Concrete Repair: Why Inlets Collapse and What To Do About It

concrete repair - inlets - sweeping.comConcrete Repair – Durable but Not Everlasting

Concrete is known to be a very strong,  exceptionally durable material used in construction. These are the characteristics that make concrete water inlets perfect for drainage or flowing rain water even in places of high traffic such as paved streets, car parks, parking lots, footpaths, sidewalks, and roofs.

A typical concrete inlet features a grate that filters out the debris trapped in rainwater from entering and blocking the storm drain. The grate also prevents vehicles, people, and larger objects from falling into the culvert.

See our images of concrete inlets and inlet repair.

Concrete Repair – Can concrete inlets get damaged?

Despite being dependable and durable, concrete inlets can fail, posing risks to people and animals who might fall into sink holes caused by the collapse of the inlet. When larger pieces of debris, leaves or construction materials find their way into the inlets, the drainage water backs up into the street or pathway.

When larger pieces of debris, leaves or construction materials find their way into the inlets, the drainage water backs up into the street or pathway. This “backed-up” water seeps into the cracks between the inlet and the pavement and can cause erosion of the sub-strata.

When this happens, concrete repair for the inlet grate, culvert and apron can be quite costly. In addition, the erosion on the surrounding the pavement, sidewalk, or groundcover can cause large sinkholes that would also need to be

If this erosion is extreme, the inlet and supporting structure can fail and the concrete repair can be quite costly. In addition, the erosion to the surrounding the pavement, sidewalk, or groundcover can cause large sinkholes that would also need to be filled, compacted, and reseeded.

Here are some of the main reasons why inlets collapse and what concrete repair measures are necessary to restore the inlets.

Reason 1: Structural failure

Although concrete is the most dependable material to use in making inlet aprons and boxes, improper concrete mixing and pouring may leave weak spots after the concrete has cured.

These weak points are often difficult to spot in concrete but you can minimize risks by choosing high-quality factory-made precasts that have been tested for strength and consistency.

When it comes to concrete repair, poured-in-place casts must be designed to meet site-specific requirements including reinforcement and environmental conditions necessary for the concrete to dry properly.

Reason 2: Functional failure

When a concrete inlet is poorly designed, it can collapse because it can’t handle the pressure of drainage water or when the load on the grates is too high.

When the inlet cover is installed without proper preparation or when the grates are too thin or too far apart, functional failure is possible. Such functional faults can be repaired before too much damage is done.

For effective and long lasting concrete repair, review and adjust for site-specific factors such as traffic, amount of water and debris, geographic features and environmental factors that affect the runoff water.

Reason 3: Poor maintenance

Like every other drainage system, a concrete inlet must be properly maintained to prolong its life and enhance its efficiency. This means that debris must be cleaned away from the grate after storms, smaller particles that build up must be cleaned out, and the entire drainage system must route the water to where it is designed.

A concrete repair process must include the use of a sufficiently large vault system, properly sized pipes, and maintenance access in the design for ongoing maintenance.

Concrete repair of collapsed inlets is a chance to fix all the problems that caused the collapse in the first place. These tips can be a starting point when assessing and repairing a collapsed or ineffective drainage inlet system.

Do you have an inlet in need of concrete repair?  Is your inlet sagging, cracked or not operating properly?  Call us at 609-886-1940.  We’ll be glad to assess your needs and guide you to the proper level of inlet concrete repair.

Street Sweeping – New Trends That Sweeps Streets Clean and Safe

Street Sweeping – Evolving to Higher Standards

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Flexibility, environmental sensitivity and well maintained equipment are in demand by clients

The street sweeping industry has become more competitive. With more professional street sweeping companies entering the industry, clients are demanding ever higher standards.

Have a look at the variety of new and different types of debris that needs to be “swept up”.

Any company which desires to remain competitive needs to keep in tune with the ever-changing customer expectations and demands. This requires paying attention to the emerging trends which are shaking up the industry.

Understanding the latest trends, and adjusting operational standards, practices or services accordingly is essential for any company which wants to remain competitive. Any company which ignores these trends does so at its own peril. So, what are the latest trends? Well, here’s a selection of that are getting the most attention in the industry.

Sreet Sweeping Trend 1 – Versatility in Service Delivery

The days when street sweepers simply swept streets are over. Nowadays, clients want companies which are versatile. This means that the companies can handle clearing any size of debris, at any scale, and under any condition. Versatility also means that street sweepers can provide services beyond merely sweeping streets. Among the extra services clients demand from street sweeping companies are portering, replacement and repairs.

To be versatile, a company needs to first of all invest in equipment which can handle various street sweeping and cleaning projects. It also means companies need to provide a variety of street cleaning services which stretch beyond sweeping. Finally, versatility means tapping into emerging technologies to enhance service delivery. For instance, forward-thinking companies now employ technologies like GPS and mobile apps to simplify resource allocation and coordination of their services.

Finally, versatility means tapping into emerging technologies to enhance service delivery. For instance, forward-thinking companies now employ technologies like GPS and mobile apps to simplify resource allocation and coordination of their services.

Street Sweeping Trend 2 – Flexibility with Communities

Having fixed working schedules may have been a virtue in the past, but not anymore. Clients nowadays want flexibility in cleaning schedules. They prefer companies which can schedule their cleaning operations in what is normally considered off hours. This includes, for instance, after 4 or 5PM on weekdays, or even on weekends.

Even as they desire flexibility in scheduling, clients expect minimum interference or inconvenience from the cleaning operations. For instance, they expect the cleaning equipment to be quiet enough not to bother them with irritating noises.

To be flexible, companies need to discuss with clients what their most convenient cleaning schedules are. They also need to invest in equipment which is as quiet as possible. Finally, they need to hire individuals who are willing to work beyond the standard 8 to 5.

Street Sweeping Trend 3 – Environmental Concerns

Most clients today are concerned about the environment. Specifically, they are concerned about their own carbon footprint. Many clients are now avoiding environmentally unfriendly cleaning services that contribute to environmental degradation.

Clients now prefer street sweeping companies which are eco-friendly. They expect companies to use cleaning chemicals which are biodegradable and safe for the environment. Companies need to place such standards into consideration when purchasing cleaning materials.

Street Sweeping Trend 4 – Professional Development

There was a time when street sweeping was considered menial work. Street sweepers were expected to have a basic education and not much commitment to the work. As such, clients did not expect more than basic street sweeping from their sweeping contractors. Well, not anymore. Clients are now raising their expectations of street sweepers. They expect them to be professionals with experience and committed to high levels of customer satisfaction. They are not willing to tolerate unprofessional conduct or mediocre performance.

To adapt, many street sweeping companies are now adopting professional standards for their staff and operators. This includes joining professional organizations, continuous education, and professional certification. Such companies are setting higher standards of conduct in the industry. Any company which wants to stay competitive needs to adopt similar standards.

In a nutshell, the street sweeping industry is changing rapidly – as new players enter the market, and client expectations continue to rise. To remain competitive, a company needs to pay attention to the emerging industry trends and alter their operations accordingly.

The latest trends which are sweeping through the industry include versatility in service delivery, flexibility with communities, environmental concerns, and professional development. Any street sweeping company which desires to remain competitive needs to adapt its policies, standards, and services according to these new realities.

If you’re looking for a street sweeping service that is dedicated to adopting the newest trends, give us a call at 732-886-1940.  We’ll be glad to talk with you about how we are raising the bar in street sweeping.