The responsibility for maintaining and repairing wastewater pipes that carry wastewater from the house or business to the Council main is shared between the property owner and the Council.
In Christchurch there are three types of wastewater (sewerage) systems – gravity, pressure and vacuum. Most properties with wastewater service use the gravity system. If you are not sure which system you have you can contact us on 03 941 8999.
Your solicitor should have advised you of your rights and responsibilities when you purchased the property. The Certificate of Title to your land should show the ownership of the wastewater pipes and other services in your property, including those in any easement, such as a Private Lane or Private Right of Way.
Most lanes are privately owned – if you live in a lane but are unsure whether it is a private or public road, you should check the Certificate of Title to your land, which clearly marks the boundary between private land, public land and common land. You can also enquire with the Council.
Titles can be ordered through Land Information New Zealand (LINZ)(external link). Their website has step by step instructions on how to do this.
Choose the type of system you are connected to from the list below for advice on what to do if you have a problem with your wastewater.
Example of a gravity wastewater system on a private lane:
Example of a gravity wastewater system with one property:
Example of a gravity wastewater system with more than one property:
Example of a pressure wastewater system with Council owned tanks:
Example of a pressure wastewater system with privately owned tanks:
Example of a vacuum wastewater system: