Trench drains are one of the most reliable and effective solutions that you can use for drainage at your home or your business. These are cost-effective drains to install and they perform well even in situations that would be challenging for other drainage solutions. Trench drains are easy to care for and do not require much in the way of annual maintenance.
There are some reasons that your trench drain can fail, however. These common reasons for trench drain failure are fairly easy to avoid and if you are aware of these common problems your trench drains will not let you down. Being educated about the reasons that your trench drains might not hold up can help you to prevent common mistakes that you might not have known about otherwise.
If you are ready to learn some more about the common reasons why trench drains fail, you need to keep reading.
Common Reasons Why Trench Drains Fail
1. Incorrect System Selection is the Most Common Reason that a Trench Drain Might Fail
This is the most common reason that a trench drain might fail and it is one of the reasons that being educated about the basics of trench drain systems can be so important. You will want to be sure that you are aware of the maximum volume of water runoff that your system needs to handle and that you are also thinking about the conditions that your trench drain will be exposed to. If your trench system has to be placed in an area that gets vehicle traffic for example, or if it is exposed to chemical wastes that might be corrosive, you will need to look at a heavy-duty trench system that will hold up to these kinds of demands.
Many people make the mistake of installing drains that are too shallow for their needs or that are not made of the right materials to hold up to challenging conditions of various kinds. When the trench drain system that you have in place is not built for these kinds of conditions, the strain of exposure to these challenges can lead to the trench drain breaking down. This is easy to avoid, however, and you just need to be aware of the water volume you are expecting as well as the kinds of environmental challenges that your trench drain system will be exposed to.
If you are not sure which kind of trench drain system you need to install for your unique situation, you can call out an expert to give you some guidance. Having some advice about the kinds of drainage systems that are ideal for your unique needs can make it much easier to select a trench system that will not let you down. There are so many options on the market that you really should have no trouble getting the right drainage style for your needs.
2. Incorrect Grating Can Cause Trench Drain Failure
The grates that you place over your trench drains are just as important as the kind of trench drains that you choose to install. There are so many kinds of grates that you can choose from that you might feel a little overwhelmed by your options. Thankfully, there are some easy rules of thumb that you can follow to guide your buying choices.
If your drains will be exposed to wheeled traffic of any kind, plastic gratings are never a good choice. These kinds of trench drain grates are designed for use around fountains or pools and are not meant to be used for walkways or road surfaces. The same can be said for industrial locations where runoff might include caustic substances that could break down plastic. Staying away from plastic grate covers is your best bet if your drainage system needs to be exposed to chemical runoff or wheeled traffic.
You will also be able to choose from various kinds of slots and gaps in the drain covers that you pick. These different slot styles allow for different volumes of water flow. Knowing the maximum volume of water that needs to flow into your drainage system can help guide this choice so that you end up with grates that will allow your trench drains to take in the maximum amount of water when necessary. There are also heel-safe and ADA-approved grates that you can select for places where foot traffic is common. Being sure that no one will get hurt when passing over your drains on foot or in a wheelchair is important as well.
The load class of each grate that you look at will help you to make this decision. Most companies make it quite clear what each grate they offer is rated to handle. You should be able to make a really good decision just based on the load class of the grates that you are looking at and stave off issues with your trench drains that stem from the grates that you have selected.
3. Incorrect Installation is One of the Reasons Why Trench Drains Fail
There are many reasons why installing your own trench drains might not be a good idea. Likewise, you need to work with a skilled drainage installation company if you are going to install a trench drain system. Getting the installation process done right the first time is important to prevent problems with your trench drains down the road. Installation is just as important as the selection of the right drainage solution for your situation and you should never cut corners on either part of the trench drain installation process.
Trench drain systems require the right slope to perform correctly, and without this key item being taken into consideration, your trench drains can fail. You will also need to set up the foundation of support for the drain lines in the system properly or they could flex, bend, or crack. Drains that need to pass through walkways and roadways also need to be reinforced to handle the strain of weight passing over them throughout the day.
When the right steps are not taken during the installation process, trench drains can fail very rapidly. This is the most common reason for failure in self-installed systems, but drainage companies can make mistakes when they deliver sloppy work as well. You will need to make sure that you are working with a skilled drainage installer and that you have taken the time to plan out the entire drain system before work is begun on the project. Any time that you make changes to one part of the drain system, you will almost always need to make changes to the rest of it. This is why having the entire system planned out before digging and installation begins is so critical to the longevity of your drainage system.
4. Trench Drains Can Fail Due to Improper Maintenance
While trench drains are very simple to maintain, they do require some maintenance annually to work correctly. When there are issues with your drains due to a lack of maintenance, they can break down or fail. If you do not think that you are capable of providing the services that your drainage system needs to perform optimally, you just need to hire a maintenance company to provide these services at least once a year.
The kinds of maintenance that your drainage system might need can vary depending on your location and the kinds of use that your trench drain was installed for. For outdoor systems, plant debris and dirt, and silt can block your drain and lead to issues that create ponding. This can undermine the drain itself and lead to the breakdown of the system at this point. Outdoor drains might also suffer from damage to the grates themselves which can cause debris to fall into the trench drain and block it.
Indoor drains that are installed in common work areas or other locations might suffer from breakdown due to caustic chemicals or just to the buildup of dirt and silt. You will need to clean these drains out to make sure that they can perform effectively and also to ensure that they are not breeding bacteria and other hazardous materials.
Providing care for your drains at least once a year is important to your trench drain system lasting for a long time. In addition to annual care, if you see that there is something wrong with one of your drains, do not wait a few months to attend to the problem. Issues that are not resolved promptly can lead to the failure of your trench drain system that could have been avoided. Neglecting your drains will often invalidate your warranty as well, so you do not want to miss the chance to have any repairs or replacements covered for you.
Drains that are backing up and creating flooding can also impact the safety of your walkways or roadways and these problems can also lead to flooding in your home or business itself. It is always a good idea to care for your drains so that they can perform properly and you will enjoy the tandem benefit that this maintenance will help your drainage system to last for the long haul.
5. Faulty Products Can Fail Trench Drains
When you choose a drainage installation company, you need to be sure that you are working with the best in the business. The products that are used to create your trench drain system need to be sturdy enough to hold up to daily challenges without suffering breakdowns. This is one of the reasons that you need to do your research before you select a company to work with for your trench drain installation.
While every company might have to deal with the occasional faulty or poorly-designed part that leads to an issue with a drainage system, you should not take your chances and pick the cheapest company that uses the cheapest parts for your trench drain installation. If you have found yourself as the owner of an entire trench drain system that is made with faulty or low-quality products, you might have to pay to have the entire drainage system replaced.
In addition to avoiding the cheap installer pitfall, make sure that you also look at the policy that the company offers for parts that fail before they have reached their expected lifespan. These parts should be under warranty and the company should offer some guarantee for their work. If there is no mention of these kinds of benefits that come along with each installation job, you should look for another company to work with for your trench drain job.
There is no reason to start off with a drainage system that is not likely to hold up to daily use and challenges. You can avoid this common problem by doing some research into the companies that you want to work with and ensuring that they will stand behind their work and the products used to create your drain system.
Trench Drains Can Last For Years if You Use These Tips
When you use these tips, trench drains can last for years without issue. Doing your research before you pick a trench drain style and making sure that you are working with the right company can make all the difference in the performance of your trench drains long term. There is no reason to cut corners since this will just lead to added expenses down the road. Reinstalling or replacing an entire faulty drainage system is no fun and you will be able to avoid this necessity if you take the time to look into the trench drain process before you hire someone or undertake the job yourself.
Trench drains are a very practical and affordable drainage solution that you can trust to work properly for years. Make sure that you avoid these common reasons for trench drain failures and your trench drain system will hold up to years of use without complaint. Maintaining the safety and cleanliness of your property is easy with quality trench drains in place and you will have no trouble with the maintenance and care of your trench drains if you keep these tips in mind.