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City of Markham Flooding Protection Rebate Program Explained

City of Markham Flooding Protection Rebate Program Explained

How Backwater Valve and Sump Pump Installation Protects Your Property

The City of Markham has experienced floods resulting from melting snow, rain and other harsh weather patterns. In many cases, the storm-water has been more than the drainage systems can handle, causing roadways and properties to experience severe damage. In some instances, this has led to sewage backup into many homes in Markham. The city of Markham has recently identified drainage systems that need retrofitting or replacement and has invested some funds to improve those drainage systems. However, you as a homeowner must also take precautions to ensure that you do not experience a sewage backup.

Not only does a sewage backup into your home cause weeks and possibly months of renovations, but it also presents a significant and serious health hazard. It is important to you and to your insurance company that you take steps to minimize your risk through the installation of a backwater valve and, where applicable, a sump pump. When installed correctly the backwater valve allows water from your sinks, tubs and toilets to flow out while preventing sewage from flowing back into your home.

City of Markham Home Flooding Protection Rebate Program

The City of Markham is now offering a home flooding protection rebate for installation of backwater valves, weeping tile redirects and sump pump installation. Rebate programs only help if you apply for and use them. Therefore, it is important to have an understanding of what exactly is available to you and how you can access the Markham Home Flooding Protection rebate program.

Engineering a functioning city sewer system is important and the City of Markham is doing its’ part to repair or replace the city sewage infrastructure. However, the Markham Home Flooding Protection Rebate program will ease the financial strain of proactive preventative measures on individual homeowners and encourage them to initiate backwater valve and sump pump installations.

We want you to be well-informed about any possible rebates to help you protect your home or commercial property from sewage backup. Here, in this blog we want to give you as much information as possible, including how to go about acquiring the rebates. The following information will be useful to you in your search for compensation:

1. If you installed flood protection devices between May 1, 2017 and May 1, 2018 you are eligible to receive City rebates (subject to certain conditions and submission of a rebate application form). To apply:

  • Gather the paperwork and certifications signifying that everything is up to code
  • Gather invoices and payment information from your contractor
  • Fill out the application to the City of Markham for your Home Flooding Protection rebate

2. If you have not yet begun installation of a backwater valve or sump pump NOW is the time to consider your in-home flood prevention plan. Don’t wait until heavy summer rains or next winter’s freeze and thaw bring flooding or sewage backup into your home. If you are unsure about the quality of your home's drainage system or its potential for sewage backup call us now to have us check it for you.

Understanding the Markham Flood Control Program:

The Markham Flood Control Program is a long-term, City-wide initiative to improve the capacity of drainage systems in Markham. This action will mitigate surface and basement flooding risk in the city, giving property owners assurance that the town is doing its’ part. However, commercial and residential property owners are being encouraged to be proactive by installing their own preventative devices.

The overall flood control program, implemented around 2012, has likely seen some repairs completed in or around your area. However, as this is a long-term project, there is still much more to do, which explains why there are still vulnerable properties in the area.

This vulnerability has resulted in a number of inconveniences and costly repairs for some residents of Markham. If you are one of the affected residents, you will be happy to know that in April 2018, Markham City Council approved the Private Plumbing Protection Rebate Program.

Who is Eligible for the Rebate?

The first question is, “Am I eligible to receive the Markham City Private Plumbing Protection Rebate in the first place?” There are a number of factors that could get you access to the benefits of the program. You are eligible if:

  • Your home is connected to the Markham City sewer system
  • Your home is not in any financial trouble. By this, we mean that your home cannot be facing any outstanding requirements or contraventions.* If your property is in a legal bind, you will need to have that taken care of before being eligible for the rebate
  • You are up-to-date with your payments and obligations to the municipality of Markham
  • Your property is up to code and passable by an inspection if necessary

*NOTE: Contact the city if you are unsure if your property is liable for any fines, overdue taxes, or other fees that may have accrued over time and slipped your mind. All financial obligations must be met before you can receive a rebate for money you spent on your backwater valve, sump pump or other flood prevention devices or repairs.

Has Your Downspout Been Disconnected?

A downspout is known by a few names. You may know it as a leader, roof drain, spout, drain spout, or downpipes. All of these names refer to the pipe that receives the water from your rain gutter.

These pipes extend from your home toward the ground. They are angled away from your home's foundation and are intended to protect it from excessive water damage. In the face of Markham's storms, your downspout may have been damaged first.

A single downspout can contain 12 gallons of water in a heavy rainstorm. If you have multiple downspouts this can lead to an excessive amount of water running into the sewer. A heavy rainstorm already stresses the city sewer system. Gushing downspouts are often the last straw for a struggling sewer causing possible back up into your building. If you replaced your downspout because of storm damage, you are eligible for a rebate on the costs of the repair.

Was Your Home Built Before the 1980s?

Markham is focused on building a better future for its residents and has recognized that housing built before the 1980s is ill-equipped to prevent flooding from rainwater. Aging drainage components are just not holding up anymore, which means pre 1980s structures are failing to deal with harsh storms.

If you are living in an older house and have experienced water damage because of rain, you may be eligible for the rebate. This could include older repairs from a few years ago. The Markham Flood Control rebate program has a retroactive clause that may account for repairs made in past years.

The flood control program provides rebates for installation, repair or retrofitting of devices and other plumbing flood prevention measures.

What is a Backwater Valve?

In times of heavy rainfall, the entire city water system can be overloaded which can lead to sewage backup into your residence or commercial property. A backwater valve can help minimize the possibility of a sewage backup with its infestation of bacteria, pungent odor and subsequent insurance claim and renovations.

A backwater valve helps to minimize the possibility of sewage backup by allowing water to flow out of your home or commercial property but the valve closes when that water attempts to re-enter. Backwater valves are not always installed in new builds and many homes built before the 1980s have limited plumbing systems that are not conducive to smooth drainage. To protect your property for the future and mitigate flood from sewage backup, Markham is offering a rebate on the installation of backwater valves correctly installed by a licensed Markham plumber.

Lateral Valves

If you're installing a backwater valve it's likely that you're adding it to a private sanitary lateral or private storm lateral. There are a few differences between these that we'll cover. This will make a difference when you are actually applying for the rebate.

A private sanitary lateral is a pipe that lies underground. It's a part of your home plumbing that directs wastewater from your house to the city's public sewers. Even though this plumbing is directly linked to the city's piping, it is your responsibility to maintain it to your property line.

There are a lot of negative consequences if there's a break in your private sanitary lateral. Breaks can open space for tree roots and other unwanted materials to clog the pipe. Additionally, wastewater can leak and enter the groundwater and pollute an otherwise clean water table.

A storm lateral serves a similar purpose but is connected to your downspouts and drainage systems. The storm lateral is connected to the city's storm sewer main.

You are eligible for a $1,750 rebate for each backwater valve installed on your indoor sanitary and storm laterals. You are qualified to receive a $2,000 rebate if the work was done on outdoor laterals.

Weeping Tile

Because they are more costly and difficult to replace, repairs on a weeping tile qualify for a slightly larger rebate. A weeping tile is a pipe that operates to collect underground water. There are slits within the pipe to gather extra water and send it out to be released elsewhere.

Homes built before the 1980s often had clay weeping tiles. These were cylindrical tubes, placed one after another with a loose connection. It was hoped that the loose connection would allow excess water to collect in the tubes and be sent to the main sewer line.

Unfortunately, the lack of solid connection has led to the tiles separating and shifting over time. This is especially true for clay weeping tiles in areas with a lot of rainfall. You may have experienced flooding or damage to your home as a result of shifting tiles.

There are a couple of repairs that you may have done to fix this issue. One of them is a disconnection of the line and redirection to the storm lateral. If you have had to do this repair, you are eligible for a $3,000 rebate on the costs.

Sump Pump Installation

Sump pumps are very common in areas with a large volume of natural water. Places where flooding is common, there is a high water table, or there is a large amount of snowmelt are likely to have houses equipped with sump pumps.

Sump pumps are situated in the lowest level of the house, often placed in holes dug out to house them. They are used to pump out excess water beneath your home. Using a sump pump can be an excellent way to minimize the occurrence of mold and flood damage.

Again, these were not as common in the creation of older homes. In homes where a clay weeping tile was in place, you may have simply disconnected it and replaced it with a sump pump. If you had to do this, you are eligible for a $5,000 maximum rebate. Individual rebate amounts may vary based on individual circumstances. Contact Mr. Rooter Plumbing of Markham to speak directly with a specialist. Call 905-477-5530 now! 

Retroactive Rebates and New Installations

There are rebates available for both those who have already completed installation and those who have yet to do so. We'll cover a few details to clarify who qualifies for which.

Anyone who owns an eligible property in the city of Markham, and has completed installations between May 1st, 2017 and May 1st, 2018 is eligible for the rebate.

You will need to contact the city and be willing to undergo a few city inspections. This is simply to ensure that the repairs or installations were completed in the correct time frame and that they are up to code.

Be sure to find the rebate application form on Markham's website.

If you're a property owner who has or will complete installation work after May 1st, 2018, you will be eligible for a new installation rebate. Again, you will be subject to inspection.

If you're planning to do a new installation, be sure to have the necessary permits. You must also contact the city to do an inspection. Once you have those things in order, you will be ready to submit your application for the Markham Backwater Valve Rebate Program.

Mr. Rooter Plumbing of Markham WILL do the paperwork for you – all you have to do is sign it!

Keep Your New Installations Updated and Inspected

When you have installations done, be sure to get an understanding of how to monitor your drainage system. Your plumbing contractor or city inspector will know what needs to be done to keep a check on the quality of your drainage.

While a new sump pump or backwater valve will help prevent some water from entering your home, there are multiple factors that could cause damage. Keeping an eye on these things should be your first defense against damages to your home.

Reach Out and Stay Updated On Local Programs

If you're unsure if you qualify for a rebate, or if your home is liable for flooding damages, be sure to contact the City of Markham or call 905-477-5530 and have someone assist you.

Additionally, you always have access to the town's current events and programs. Stay up to date on how the City of Markham is progressing and be certain get access to the benefits of other programs similar to the Markham City Home Flooding Protection Rebate Program.

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