The Art and Science of Construction

Why Do You Need To Regularly Clean Your Parking Lot's Storm Drains And How Do You Know If They Need Cleaned?

Storm drains are vital for making sure that your property's parking lot doesn't collect standing water. They consist of a heavy metal grate over a deep catch basin. The catch basin collects small debris, while larger debris is prevented from falling into the catch basin by the grate. A pipe in the catch basin allows the water that collects there to drain into the city's stormwater management system or into your property's sewer. 

When a storm drain is functioning properly, it will rapidly divert water away from your parking lot and prevent it from pooling there. Unfortunately, storm drains can become clogged with debris, which reduces the flow of water or stops it entirely. When a storm drain is clogged, you'll need to have it cleaned. To learn about why you need to regularly clean your parking lot storm drains and how to tell if they need to be cleaned, read on.

Why Do You Need to Clean Parking Lot Storm Drains?

When a storm drain is completely clogged, your parking lot will flood, and this damages your parking lot and presents a safety hazard to the drivers using it. Asphalt and concrete parking lots will both be damaged by standing water — if the problem isn't corrected, the parking lot will begin to crack.

Drivers who use your parking lot may lose control of their vehicles when they hydroplane over the standing water in your parking lot, which can cause a collision. Additionally, pedestrians will have to wade through standing water in order to reach their vehicles, which is a major annoyance. Periodically cleaning your storm drains to ensure adequate drainage will prevent these problems.

How Can You Tell if Your Parking Lot Storm Drains Need Cleaning?

Your parking lot storm drains need to be cleaned if you notice water pooling next to them. This is usually a sign that the catch basin is full or the pipe in the catch basin is clogged by debris. There's nowhere for the water to go, so it starts to back up out of the storm drain and pool in your parking lot.

If you have an asphalt parking lot, you'll need to clean your storm drains if you notice the asphalt by the drain sinking lower. This is normally a sign of slow drainage due to a clog. Water pools near the storm drain while it slowly makes its way through the pipes, and the water seeps through the edges of the storm drain and causes the parking lot's gravel subbase to shift, which causes the asphalt above to start sinking.

How Are Parking Lot Storm Drains Cleaned?

Storm drain cleaning uses a combination of hydrojetting and vacuuming in order to remove debris from the catch basin. After removing the metal grate above the catch basin, a pipe will be inserted into it. The pipe is used to suck up all of the debris that has fallen into the catch basin, where they'll be loaded into a vacuum truck attached to the pipe.

Once all of the debris has been removed from the catch basin, a flexible pipe with a nozzle attached to it will be inserted into it in order to hydrojet it The pipe is connected to a water truck that delivers high-pressure water to it, which comes through the nozzle and blasts away any debris that was stuck to the side of the catch basin and couldn't be vacuumed up. After hydrojetting the catch basin, the nozzle will be advanced through the pipe in the catch basin in order to break apart any clogs that are inside. After vacuuming and hydrojetting, your storm drain's catch basin will be empty and the pipe connected to it will be free of clogs.

If your parking lot frequently floods during heavy storms, call a storm drain cleaning service in your area and have your storm drains unclogged. Unclogging your storm drains will improve water drainage on your parking lot, protecting the structural integrity of the parking lot and preventing standing water from becoming a hazard to the drivers using it