Sign In

Sump Pump Discharge

Sump pumps remove water that is collected from a building’s foundation and are commonly found in basements in Lethbridge.  A s​ump pump can sometimes create issues adjacent to the property. The property owner is responsible​ to address any issue identified by the City of Lethbridge. 

Homes built in new neighbourhoods, since 2005, are connected underground to the stormwater system.  This arrangement eliminates issues with adjacent properties.  

​Want to see the Bylaw? City of Lethbridge Bylaw #5594 – Section 13.7​ 

Check out Sump Pump Ownership Tips. Refer to page 28 for sump pump information, specifically. ​



What issues can be caused by sump pump discharge?

There can be a number of issues​ caused by  sump pump discharge that might be causing problems in your neighbourhood, such as potholes in paved lanes, standing water in unpaved lanes, and excessive winter icing of sidewalks and lanes. City staff can help you to determine if there is a problem or not.​



How does sump pump discharge cause issues?

If your sump pump runs frequently or year-round, the volume of water can cause problems with sidewalks, streets or lanes. 


Who is responsible for addressing sump pump discharge issues?

The property owner is responsible to address these issues, in accordance with the Drainage Bylaw #5594. 



What are my options for reducing the impact of sump pump discharge to adjacent property?

  1. You may discharge your sump pump to your yard year-round.
  2. You may connect your sump pump to an existing floor drain through a controlled discharge connection.
  3. You may connect your sump pump to a new or relocated floor drain through a controlled discharge connection.
Please note: Options 2 and ​3  will require that you hire a licensed plumber to perform the work. Option 3 will require that your plumber obtain a plumbing permit before performing the work.​​
If you choose to explore other solutions other than what we have suggested, all installations must comply with both the Alberta Building Code and the applicable City of Lethbridge Bylaws.​

What is a controlled discharge connection?

A controlled discharge connection is an authorized connection from the sump pump to the sanitary sewer system via a basement floor drain. It includes a small storage tank intended to allow a limited amount of water into the floor drain. During wet weather events, the controlled discharge is designed to move surplus water to your yard. This mitigates frequent or year-round sump pump discharge to your yard or adjacent property. 

Where am I allowed to discharge my sump pump water?

  • ​​You may discharge your sump pump to your yard year-round.
  • You may connect your sump pump to a floor drain through a controlled discharge connection.



Who pays for a controlled discharge connection?

​The property owner is responsible for any retrofitting costs. 

Are there grants available from the City of Lethbridge? ​No.

Would the existing Protective Plumbing Incentive Program (PPIP)​ provide assistance with a controlled discharge connection? No.​



When modifying my sump pump, what guidelines do I need to follow?

​You need to follow City Bylaws and the Alberta Plumbing Code. 



Click here ​to see the background regarding sump pump discharge​​, and supporting information and documents.​

For more information

Phone: 311 or 403-320-3111 (if outside of Lethbridge)
Online: Submit a service request