Signs That Your Storm Drain Is Failing

October 16, 2018 Published by Leave your thoughts

On all types of properties, especially large properties meant for public use, storm drains are crucial in preventing flooding from rainstorms. Therefore, if you start to see some of the warning signs that the storm drains are beginning to fail, it’s important to make sure you prioritize cleaning and fixing those storm drains.

There are a variety of common symptoms of storm drain failure, including everything from small issues such as water trickling slowly into drain gutters, to large issues such as massive sinkholes forming in areas after flooding, which can cause serious damage to roads, utilities and properties. In addition, standing water can be an indicator that storm drains in an area are not working properly.

With this in mind, here are a couple of the most common reasons storm drains fail, pointing to the necessity of prioritizing storm drain cleaning in Erie County, NY.

What causes storm drain failure?

There are two big factors that can result in storm drain failure: clogged catch basins and certain materials filling up the storm drain pipe.

It is not uncommon for catch basins to fill up with leaves, dirt, sticks and other debris and objects that fall down into the drain and can block or fill up the pipe. You’ve probably seen a catch basin on the side of the street before—they’re the areas with wide grates that cover up an opening. It’s not difficult for debris to fall down into them.

Storm drains are designed to carry a certain amount of water. But when those drains get blocked up, the amount of water the pipes are capable of carrying can result in the pipe carrying more than 30 percent more than the volume it was designed to carry, which means standing water will clog up the area. Considering many storm drain basins don’t get cleaned for many years (or until there is an issue), this is a relatively common problem, but one that can be fairly easily resolved with a routine cleaning process and an inspection of the drain pipe.

There are a couple kinds of materials most commonly used for drain pipes: corrugated steel and concrete. Corrugated steel pipes can corrode over time because of microbiological influenced corrosion (MIC), meaning the chemicals inside the pipe system eat away at the metal until it erodes, and ultimately cracks and leaks.

Concrete pipes do not have these problems with corrosion, but they can still have a number of cracks and leaks. It is a very heavy material, and the joints must be sealed with rubber gaskets or concrete, and those are the areas most prone to leakages. Concrete pipes often require more ongoing maintenance to reseal these joints.

Want to know more about storm drain failure, its causes and how you can avoid having to deal with it? We encourage you to reach out to Macken Services, Inc. for more information about storm drain cleaning in Erie County, NY and the benefits of prioritizing this service. We look forward to assisting you soon!

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