Water that runs off large surfaces, roofs, drives and so on is called stormwater. This water is gathered by something called stormwater pits and drain systems to take it away from people’s property and the street. It acts as a storage container for the stormwater and then that water drains into drainage pipes and away. When stormwater is not contained and directed away like this it can quickly build up around homes and in the streets leading to a lot of potential damage. Here is a closer look at how does a stormwater pit works and how to install one.

All about Adelaide stormwater drains and pits

As mentioned a stormwater pit is a container or essentially a ‘pit’ hence the name that holds stormwater and then controls the rate that drains into the drainage system so that when there are heavy rains there is no flooding as the drainage system cannot keep up with that amount of water all at one time. Even with stormwater pits, heavy enough rainfall can still lead to flooding of land and streets when the pits are overwhelmed too (or if your stormwater drain is blocked). They are made from concrete and have a number of pipes coming out of them for drainage. At the top is a grate that is there to help filter debris like twigs and leaves to prevent issues of blockage. A stormwater pit is not the same as a soakwell, which is another water collection pit but it only holds the water until it can drain into the soil surrounding it.

Bonus Read: How To Unblock A Drain In A Flash!

Stormwater pit installation

The process of installing a stormwater pit in Adelaide is more than just digging a hole and putting it in. That is why it is something that should be done by professionals. In order for the pit to work properly things like sizing and filtration need to be considered. While traditionally they are made from concrete, you can get ones made from recycled plastic nowadays. The stormwater drainage solution for your property needs to consider the different options such as:

  • If it is a light-duty rainwater pit needed with a plastic base
  • Whether to use top filter lids made from aluminium or plastic
  • Heavy-duty stormwater pits come in different sizes with bases made from polypropylene
  • Filtering devices including leaf guards
  • Attaching drainage pipes
  • Shape required as well as size
  • Whether a rainwater tank installation is included

But one of the reasons you should use a professional company when looking at how to install a stormwater pit is that the materials used for these systems are made from pre-cast concrete which is heavy and needs special lifting equipment to handle them. Also, the site needs to be excavated first in preparation and this needs to be made stable and safe. Furthermore, the soil needs to be compacted to prevent subsidence in the future. A professional company will have an engineer that they consult with for larger works to make sure the site is suitable and that the soil is ready. Then using that equipment they lift the pit into the hole and lower it down. Then drainage pipes are attached and once the grout or sealant has had time to properly dry they will backfill the pit, compact the ground and then level it. Finally, the grate goes in place on top of the pit.

Is DIY installation of a stormwater pit possible?

It is great to better understand how does stormwater pits work, and how they are installed, but this is not a DIY project, in this country only licensed professionals can handle this work for it to be legal. This might be a general or dedicated local Adelaide plumber or a guttering installation company with the right license. Either way, they have a license to handle this work. If someone does this work who does not know what they are doing it could lead to real problems in the area with the drainage system it connects to. The water might not get directed in the right direction or place.

Is permission required when installing a stormwater pit?

To discharge any water into the drainage system run by any council you do need permission. Where you live affects how you go about getting approval or a permit and there may also be a fee to receive it. It is likely that once you have that, and your professionals have installed the pit you will then also have an inspection to make sure everything is good.