Frequently Asked Questions

  • Who owns the building sewer line from my property line to the main sewer line in the public street?

    The lower building sewer from your property line to the main sewer line in the public street is publicly owned and maintained by West Valley Sanitation District when a approved property line cleanout is installed at your property line.

  • Will West Valley Sanitation District correct my sewer backup problem?

    Call the District first if you experience any sewer overflows, backups, or other sewer-related problems, it is free of charge, during normal business hours from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at (408) 378-2407 Press 2, and after hours only at (408) 299-2507. Note that the District is only responsible for problems in the public right-of-way; that is, the lower building sewer from the property line cleanout to the main sewer line located in the street. Property owners are responsible for the portion of the building sewer line that is on private property from their building to the property line cleanout.

  • What is the principal cause of sewer backups?

    Sewer backups are usually due to tree roots that grow into and clog the sewer lines as they seek the water inside the pipe.

  • What steps can I take to help avoid sewer backup problems?

    There are simple measures you can take to maintain your sewer line in optimum condition, among them:

    1. Don't pour grease down your drains, click here.

    2. Call us first regarding overflows, backups or for any sewer related question or issue. We are more than happy to come out and check the sewer lines in the public right-of-way, and make sure the problem is not coming from our sewer pipes. You will be responsible for any problem that is within your property line. We recommend calling a reputable plumber to help clear any clogged indoor lines or your portion of the lateral sewer within your property.
    3. Make sure that only human waste and toilet paper are flushed down your toilets.

    4. Identify where the cleanouts (access points) to your sewer line are and keep them readily accessible in case a plumber needs to access them. Typically, they are located in close proximity to the house in a garden area, in the driveway, or in the garage.

    5. If you have chronic root problems, one solution is to consider is the removal of trees or plants that may be the culprits.

  • What are the procedures for connecting to West Valley Sanitation District sewer system?

    A sewer connection permit will need to be obtained and an encroachment permit from the local agency having public right-of-way jurisdiction will be required when installing a building sewer line from your property line to the main sewer line in the public street.

  • What are the procedures for obtaining sewer service?

    Contact the District Permit Counter by phone during regular business hours, 7:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday at (408) 378-2407 Press 5 or email at and a confirmation email will be sent.

  • What fees does West Valley Sanitation District charge?

    The District Board of Directors established fees and charges for sewer service. The rate structure is based on the cost of providing sewer service to a residence. Non-residential rates reflect the typical amount and strength of wastewater. The District also has some special fees for unusual circumstances. The fees are calculated on the actual cost of service and reflect a fairness principle that the users pay for the impact that they cause on the sewer system.

  • What is a property line cleanout?

    A cleanout is a riser pipe that is placed into a sewer line that provides an opening at ground level. The property line cleanout is installed at the edge of the property line. Maintenance of the building sewer line from the building to the property line cleanout is the owner's responsibility, and from the property line cleanout to the main sewer line in the public right-of-way is the District's responsibility.

  • What is a sewer backflow protection device and why do I need it?

    A backflow protection device reduces the risk of sewage working its way up in your building sewer line into your building from a blcokage in the District main sewer line. Not all of the buildings that are connected to the West Valley Sanitation District sewer system require backflow protection devices. However, a number of buildings do need to have a backflow protection device installed to prevent possible sewage overflows within buildings in the event of blcokages in the District main sewer line.

  • What is the responsibility of property owners for the maintenance of sewer lines on private property and the line that connects the property to the District's sewer system?

    The owner of the property is responsible for keeping the upper building sewer line clear between the building and the property line cleanout if there is one. If there is no property line cleanout or the location is unknown, the owner is responsible for clearing the lower building sewer line to the District main sewer. Locating the building sewer line and its connection to the District main sewer is also the owner's responsibility, although we will attempt to assist with available records and information. We suggest the owner employ a plumber to clear any stoppages in the building sewer line.

  • Where can I get more information about the monthly sewer service charges that appear on my property tax bill?

    The total 12 months of sewer service charges, along with other fees and charges such as financed payments, appears as a lump sum on the property tax roll under code "Sanitary Sewer Service."

    For a breakdown and/or an explanation about your sewer service charges, please contact the District Office by phone during regular business hours, 7:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday at(408) 385-3008.

  • How do I request public records from West Valley Sanitation District?

    West Valley Sanitation District's Board of Directors adopted Policy # 900.1005 on November 12, 2014 regarding public records requests. The purpose of this policy is to affirm the public's right to access District records and to establish District guidelines concerning accessibility of District records. Use the District Public Records Request form to make your request.