Stormwater drains are different from sewer drains. Sewer drains carry waste from our kitchen, bathroom, laundry and other plumbing pipes in our homes which are then drained to a waste treatment plant where the water is treated. Storm water drains, on the other hand, carries rainwater that flows from our roofs, lawns, driveways, and pathways.
Rainwater is essentially much cleaner than the sewer water that drains to our sewer pipes. They are not treated and drain directly to our lakes, rivers, and oceans. It is therefore important that we keep our stormwater drains clean and clear to prevent rainwater from overflowing on our property.
Here are some tips on how to keep our stormwater drains clear and things that you can do to prevent your stormwater drain from clogging up:
1. Clear your roof of leaves, twigs, and branches that would go down the downpipes and could cause the stormwater drain to clog up. One of the major causes of the stormwater drains clogging up is the accumulation of sediments inside. If gutters and downpipes are not cleared, it would cause leaves, litter, and debris to go down and blocked the downpipes. Putting a gutter guard helps to ensure that this debris does not go down and cause a blockage. If you got trees near the roof, regularly trimming them down helps to make sure that leaves do not accumulate that much on your roofs and gutters.
2. Remove debris on your yard and lawns that can go down the stormwater drain. Planting grass and vegetation on your yard helps to minimize soil erosion and therefore lessens the accumulation of sediments inside your stormwater drains. They also help in preventing debris left in the yard from going down the stormwater drains. One best safeguard to prevent any debris from going inside the stormwater drain is to install a stormwater grate. This helps to filter out what goes directly inside the stormwater drain allowing only rainwater to flow inside.
What could commonly cause blockage to our storm water drains?
- Litter – rubbish such as plastic wrappers and candy wraps.
- Dirt – you may raise an eyebrow with this example but yes dirt can cause blockage to your storm water drains
- Plastic bottles – proper disposal of your water bottles and soda cans may just save you extra dollars.
- Leaves – It’s autumn season so expect for dead leaves scattered across your lawn, make a habit of sweeping your front and back yard for dead leaves. It’s a good exercise and will save your drains.
3. Avoid throwing or dumping rubbish inside the stormwater drains. Again, only rainwater is meant to drain inside the stormwater drains. If you just had a recent BBQ outside, do not throw your leftover food down the stormwater drain. Or if you just cleaned your car, do not spill any oil down the drain as well. Remember that water from the stormwater drain goes directly to our water systems like our lakes and rivers and they go there directly untreated, unlike the sewer waters that are treated in waste treatment plants.
Remember, only rainwater is meant to drain in your stormwater drainage and nothing else. If your stormwater drain becomes clogged up and blocked, it’s considered as an emergency situation since it poses a health risk to human and marine life since this water goes directly to our natural waterways without being treated. A blocked stormwater drain can become contaminated and cause potentially hazardous bacteria and virus to affect our waterways so it’s very important to have these drains fixed as soon as possible.
Here is another article that you may find interesting in regards to “What should I know about water hammer”.
If you got any electrical and plumbing problems don’t hesitate to call us at 13 10 91 to fix the problem right away. We serve areas in Canberra, Newcastle, Central Coast, Hunter Valley, Lake Macquarie, and Port Stephens.
At The Plumbing and Electrical Doctor we have made these articles downloadable to PDF for our customers convenience.