What is an Overflow Relief Gully and why should it be clear?
An overflow relief gully (ORG) is a grated drain that acts as a relief valve in the case of a sewer blockage. In other words, it allows sewage to overflow outside. An ORG is required for all modern properties in Australia and is typically located outdoors near the kitchen or laundry. This system prevents sewage from emptying into your home during any blockages (or if the local sewage system is inundated with flood water during any flooding incident).
For this reason, it is important to check the ORG outside your home regularly.
Preventative maintenance measures
Here are some simple preventative measures to help ensure your property’s ORG is functioning correctly.
- Most importantly, make sure the grate at the top of the ORG can easily pop off to guarantee overflow can escape.
- Check that the ORG is not covered by any objects, such as landscaping items or garden beds, because a blocked relief gully may result in sewage being pushed back inside your property.
- Confirm that stormwater drains do not empty into the ORG as this can cause the system to overflow or become blocked from debris.
- Get a plumber to check that the ORG is at least 100 mm lower than the lowest waste outlet in your home and also 150 mm above surrounding ground to prevent stormwater from getting inside.
What does an ORG look like?
An ORG is a drain-like fitting made of plastic or metal alloy located outside your house; usually close to your bathroom or laundry external wall. ORGs can look different on various properties and should not be confused with stormwater drains.
ORG information video
Watch this great video from our friends at Urban Utilities that has some more information about ORG's.