Drainage System Components

There are several drainage components that are fairly common in most drainage systems. This section introduces some basic components that are part of the drainage systems described in the following section - Drainage Systems. Successful construction involves selecting the appropriate materials for the collection, conveyance, and discharge requirements of your system. Attention to proper capacity and durability of each drainage material is critical. The performance of your system will be improved by using good construction techniques and by performing routine periodic maintenance.

Drainage Materials

The quality and availability of drainage products vary greatly from area to area. Return to top

Installation Considerations

Drainage system installation should be done during dry weather periods except in emergency situations. Excavations can quickly be flooded with water making proper construction difficult and dangerous. If there is a lot of water present while excavating soil, you will have sediments accumulating in the gravel openings, on the geotextile, in pipes and catch basins, and in marine waters where the drainage will eventually discharge.

Avoid construction when the ground is wet. Your system will perform better with dry weather construction and not cause sedimentation in other areas.

Before you complete the installation of your system check to make sure pipes have not been crushed by heavy equipment. Make sure each connection is solid and not leaking. Check the slope of pipe runs. It is a common practice to water test your drainage system before covering it with soil (backfilling).

Figure 10. Anchoring Systems.
Figure 10. Anchoring Systems.

Water must move downhill so double check to see that water moves to your planned locations. If you do not do the installation yourself at least observe your construction so you can help troubleshoot any future problems. Make a photo record of the work if you have a camera handy. During construction you should take your plan drawing and sketch onto the plan what actually was installed. Important items such as locations, depths, sizes, and problems will help you improve or expand your system later. A system "as-built" will also help you or a future property owner avoid damaging the system during other site improvement work.

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Care and Maintenance

Every drainage system needs some periodic inspection to see that the system performs properly. Surface features like yard drains, roof drain catch basins, manholes, swales, above ground pipes and couplings, pipe anchors, and discharge areas can be quickly checked. Catch basins and manholes are usually designed to capture debris and heavier sediments and will require the removal of a few buckets of material from time to time to prevent pipe clogging and discharge of material into water bodies.

Below ground drainage features like pipes, strip drains, couplings, and overall system performance should be checked regularly for signs of failure during rainfall events. Overflows, leaks, wet areas, flow bypassing your system, and discharge interferences can be noted and immediately repaired if you detect the problems early.

For more information please contact us at (281) 340-9206 or go to our online request form.

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