As well as delivering safe, clean and reliable water to you, it’s also our job to take it away once you’ve used it.
So, when you flush the loo, have a shower or turn on your dishwasher, we make sure that all that used water - now called ‘sewage’ or ‘wastewater’ - is safely collected and transferred to treatment plants via the sewerage system.
In Melbourne, we enjoy a world-class sewerage system that’s central to the health of our community and environment.
Who’s responsible for what pipes?
South East Water’s sewerage network is made up of 10,500 kilometres of pipeline, 300 sewage pump stations and nine water recycling plants.
We manage and maintain the sewer up to the connection point with your property, often near the property boundary. This connection point is called the inspection opening and any pipes or fittings upstream of this is the responsibility of the property owner.
There are generally two types of house connection drain arrangements: a boundary trap and an inspection shaft. You can see these, as well as the connection points, in the diagrams below.
It’s really important that the property owner maintains and keeps the boundary trap and inspection shaft accessible and uncovered at all times. If there’s a blocked pipe in your home, this is the first place sewage should spill.
Learn more about preventing pipe blockages.
Sewer connection with inspection shaft. South East Water’s sewer and the property connection point on a property with an inspection shaft drain arrangement.
South East Water’s sewer and the property connection point on a property with a boundary trap drain arrangement.
Want to know more? Check out our sewer servicing guide which explains responsibilities and requirements for any sewer works.
Overflow relief gully (ORG)
An overflow relief gully (ORG) is a drain-like fitting located outside the home, designed to release any sewage overflow external to your property, in case of a sewer blockage (away from your precious home and belongings).
It’s the property owner’s responsibility to make sure their home is fitted with a properly designed and operational ORG. Find out more here.