City of Stephenville to conduct smoke testing of wastewater collection system

Thursday, July 14, 2016

STEPHENVILLE, Texas—Inspection crews for the city of Stephenville are looking for any defects in the municipality’s wastewater collection system and during the next two weeks will use a smoke testing method to determine sewer lines in need of repair.

Notices about the smoke testing have been distributed as yellow door hangers on residences in Stephenville, including those near the Tarleton State University campus, which might be occupied by students, said Tarleton Police Chief Matthew Welch.

According to the notices, inspection crews will conduct a physical survey during the next few days on the city’s wastewater collection system. “Pipeline Analysis, LLC, will perform this study, which involves opening manholes in the streets and backyard utility easements,” the notices state. “Information gained from this study will be used to repair and improve the wastewater collection system.”

The survey will include smoke testing of the sewer lines to locate breaks and defects in the system. “During this testing, white smoke will exit through vent pipes on the roofs of homes and through sewer line breaks.”

Inspectors stress that the smoke used in the process is non-toxic, leaves no residue and creates no fire hazard. The only time smoke may enter a residence is if defective plumbing exists or if drain traps are dry, states the notice.

“If you have seldom-used drains, please pour a gallon of water in the drain to fill the drain trap,” inspectors have advised. “This procedure will help prevent the possibility of smoke entering your living areas through those drains.”

Field crews will perform testing of all sewer lines in the area. At no time will crews be required to enter residences or businesses.

Should anyone have questions regarding the smoke testing of the city wastewater collection system, call 800-637-0164. For more information about the process, visit

Tarleton, a member of The Texas A&M University System, provides a student-focused, value-driven educational experience marked by academic innovation and exemplary service, and dedicated to transforming students into tomorrow’s professional leaders. With campuses in Stephenville, Fort Worth, Waco, Midlothian and online, Tarleton engages with its communities to provide real-world learning experiences and to address societal needs while maintaining its core values of integrity, leadership, tradition, civility, excellence and service.


Contact: Pipeline Analysis, LLC

A founding member of The Texas A&M University System, Tarleton is breaking records — in enrollment, research, scholarship, athletics, philanthropy and engagement — while transforming the lives of more than 15,000 students in Stephenville, Fort Worth, Waco, Midlothian, A&M RELLIS at Bryan and online. True to Tarleton’s values of excellence, integrity, and respect, academic programs emphasize real world learning and address regional, state and national needs.