Pipe Eye - Storm Sewer Systems

Storm sewer lines are a very important part of our infrastructure. Storm lines collect all the water and debris off roads through catch basins. One can easily imagine how much junk gets flushed into these drainage systems such as, leaves, sticks, oil run off, as well as salt, sand, gravel and de-icing compounds from the winter months. Because storm lines are actually connected to environmentally sensitive water-ways, and they are subject to all these foreign materials, it is extremely important to maintain this part of the waste-water infrastructure through regular cleaning.

  • Catch Basin Cleaning Program: Eighty percent of this foreign matter penetrates our storm sewers and our waterways through catch basins Excess water drains into catch basins carrying with it different kinds of road debris and other harmful liquids. Liquid waste is filtered out of our storm sewer system through oil separators. If catch basins and oil separators are not properly maintained, they can cause road debris to not only enter our storm sewer system, but it will also cause blockages, back-ups, and flooding.

  • Storm Main Maintenance: Storm sewer lines are responsible for carrying all of the road runoff, excess groundwater, and roof drain/perimeter drain collections to our waterways. If these lines are not maintained on a regular basis, it could lead to more expensive problems like flooding.

  • Root Problems: Many of the storm sewers installed before 1980 were intended to not only carry runoff water away, but also to collect groundwater through perforations in the pipeline. This enables roots to infiltration into storm lines. Roots love this type of environment, and also thrive to the point of blocking the storm mains and service lines. Once established, they grow very rapidly.

  • CSP Pipe Problems: Corrugated steel pipe is known to corrode quite substantially if not maintained properly. This type of pipe material is galvanized, but over time, rocks, sand, gravel, salt and the other materials found in storm waste water wears this coating off and make the pipeline susceptible to rust. CSP pipe is used mostly for infrastructure like culverts, for example the pipelines that traverse under driveways allowing ditch water to flow freely though. If water and debris is allowed to pool and sit in these types of pipe lines, it can cause the bottom of the pipe to corrode away entirely.

  • Cross Connections: Cross connections are also a problem in storm drain systems simply because they allow sanitary effluent into our environmentally sensitive waterways. Dye testing and smoke testing are a very simple solution to these problems.  Visit our infiltration inspections studies page for more information on smoke and dye testing.