The City of Fort Atkinson’s Engineering Department has scheduled a contractor to perform smoke testing of the sanitary sewer system beginning June 1.

The “smoke” is manufactured for this purpose, is non-toxic, leaves no residuals or stains, and has no effect on plant or animal life. The smoke has a distinctive, but not unpleasant, odor.

Visibility and odor only last a few minutes, where there is adequate ventilation.

Smoke is blown into the sanitary system that will rise from the ground to be visible, revealing areas of pipe that need to be repaired. Because the plumbing appliances in one’s house or commercial building are connected to the sanitary sewer system, smoke will rise through the vent pipe and out the roof.

In some cases smoke might enter your home or place of business if the:

• Vents connected to your building’s sewer pipes are inadequate, defective or improperly installed.

• Traps under sinks, tubs, basins, showers and other drains are dry, defective, improperly installed or missing.

• Pipes, connections and seals of the wastewater drain system in and under your buildings are damaged, defective, have plugs missing, or are installed improperly.

Should smoke enter your home or business without an obvious pathway (example, a dry trap), it should be inspected by a licensed plumber to determine further action.

This testing will begin on or around June 1 and mighty take up to six weeks to complete.

Persons who have any questions on this matter should contact Tom Williamson, assistant city engineer, at (920) 563-7760 or email

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