Work to utility piping systems must be permitted or have temporary authorization by Austin Water to discharge into the sanitary sewer system, even if the building has a wastewater discharge permit.

Utility piping systems include chillers and boilers used by commercial buildings, high-rises, schools, and universities to heat and cool the buildings. A permit is required to prevent certain cleaners, detergents, and corrosion inhibitors from leaching excessive chemicals and/or metals into the sanitary sewer system.


  • Cleaning and/or passivation of new utility piping systems
  • Cleaning, descaling, and/or coil cleaning of existing utility piping systems

Work must be done by a permitted utility piping system provider.

If you are a chemical or water treatment provider and would like to obtain a Utility Piping System Discharge Permit, please submit an application least 30 days prior to your first planned discharge.


To drain water from existing utility piping systems with no additional cleaning, descaling, or flushing, you must either:

  1. Have work performed under the water treatment provider’s annual discharge permit (verify they are permitted and assume responsibility for sampling, analysis, notification, and reporting), or
  2. Request a temporary authorization to have the building maintenance staff drain the water using this form.