Residential trench drain is a large market that fluctuates with the construction season. Homeowners and private drainage projects often extend the market well into winter months when the commercial sectors slow. The most common residential applications are pool/patio, driveway drains, downspout drainage and shower drains. This article discusses these four main drainage applications and some of the solutions available to you.
Pools/Spas and Patio
Pool/Spa and patio drains are grouped together because of their similarities. Plastic channels and grates are standard, both for economic and practical reasons. These trench drains only handle water flow from their respective areas, which are typically flat surfaces, and offer bottom or end outlets. Neither is designed for a high volume of water so they tend to be 4″ wide or less.
A longstanding problem that homeowners face with patio drains is how they affect the aesthetics of the patio. No one wants to spend thousands of dollars on a beautiful concrete or paver patio only to have a drain standing front and center. Thankfully, many systems are beginning to offer decorative grating for trench drains. TDS™ offers beautiful bronze and aluminum options. While NDS® came out with decorative plastic grating. Zurn® Z880 system has offered decorative options for years. Iron Age Designs make decorative cast iron grates to fit many patio drain systems to give any project that upscale look. You can buy everything you need in the form of decorative drainage kits online by clicking here.
When a driveway slopes toward the house foundation or straight into the garage, it is a good indicator that future flood mediation will be needed. A good remedy for this is a floor drain. However, floor drains have a relatively small open surface area and require seasonal cleaning to avoid clogging from debris. A trench drain on the other hand, nearly stretches across the entire driveway which effectively stops the water flow before it can harm your basement, foundation or nearby structures.
TDS™ offers a variety of options for driveway drainage. A popular system is the 5″MEArin100. The MEArin100 offers a vast array of decorative grating options and easy installation.
Polycast ® or NDS® pre-sloped systems are the standard driveway drains. Their widths and slopes allow the systems to evacuate a large amount of water rapidly. There are a variety of cast iron grates available to fit the 6″ systems, including decorative cast iron grates which allow the same water flow as standard slotted grates.
Load class is an important factor in driveway drains. A system should have grating that will not warp or break from the traffic driving over it. Class B grates (cars and lightweight trucks) or class C grates (heavy-duty traffic, H-20 loading) are recommended. Decorative cast iron is acceptable with certain systems.
Downspouts are a tricky topic. Some downspouts flow into driveways which redirects the problem to that area. Others drain right into the ground and have the potential for saturating the soil, causing erosion, killing shrubs and potentially weakening a house’s foundation.
There are basically two ways to remedy a downspout drainage problem. The first is to install a French drain or similar product to catch downspout water and slowly filter it into the surrounding soil. This eliminates much of the pooling and damage you’ll get from a sudden storm. However, this method can be ineffective if installed improperly or if there is too much water for the system’s capacity.
Your second option is to install a catch basin in the area. A catch basin holds a small reservoir of water and carries it away from the downspout site through piping. If placed beneath the downspout, it prevents water from ever reaching the soil. The reservoir at the bottom of the drain allows any extraneous debris to settle to the bottom where it can be removed later. Be sure to have a plan in place to clear debris periodically to avoid the system being blocked.
While shower drains can sound appealing, the truth is they’re expensive when compared to other residential drains. This is no fault of the suppliers (prices do vary), but rather a consequence of the application itself. The material cost for stainless steel, a standard component of the shower drain, remains high which effects pricing across all industries.
Shower drains have stainless steel grating options with different finishes and offer PVC or stainless steel bodies. (Keep in mind that not all covers have flanges). The material is important because it is rust proof and corrosion resistant. This resistance allows it to be used in settings involving steam and chemical treatment without being coated first.
Making sure that you have the right system for the application is imperative since there are several methods of installation. Infinity Drains offer a Site Sizable kit that allows for customers to adjust the outlet placement and fabricate the system to fit their application.
The most common reason people like the option of a shower drain install is the curbless appeal. Think about it in terms of practicality, a curbless shower allows greater mobility for aging baby boomers with wheelchairs or arthritis. There is a measure of safety afforded by this style of shower drain.
For those with standard 4″ shower drains, decorative round grates are available to enhance the project design. Click here to see some of the options available.
These are just a few of the residential applications that may have a need for drainage solutions. If you have any questions on the drainage issue you’re facing, or if you want expert assistance with your project, go to trenchdrain.com or give us a call at 610-638-1221.