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How Does a Catch Basin Work in a Parking Lot? Fort Lauderdale, Florida

How Does a Catch Basin Work in a Parking Lot?

Looking down into a Nyloplast PVC drain basin, used as the overflow and outlet structure for a bioretention cell (biofilter, engineered rain garden). The smaller pipes are probably underdrains that collect stormwater runoff that has filtered through the soil in the bioretention cell. The larger pipe is an outlet pipe that flows to a downstream storm sewer. The bottom of the basin is filled with a sump of water (which helps settle sediment and other particles from the runoff). The ductile iron grate, my head and the sky are reflected in the water.

The parking lot is a major component of any business, but its very nature means that it’s prone to water damage and the formation of puddles that inconvenience those who park there. A storm drain system that diverts water from the parking lot to a municipal sewer system or water catchment helps redirect water away from the parking lot, but it’s not always a complete solution. Installing a catch basin helps the parking lot last longer, prevents water from pooling, and aids with water runoff from storms.

Here’s a look at what a catch basin is, what it does, and why you should contact us at U.S. Pave today for more information about installing a catch basin.

Purpose of a Catch Basin in a Parking Lot

A catch basin is a water collecting tank that’s designed to collect and manage stormwater runoff, preventing water from pooling on the parking lot surface. It’s ancillary to a storm drain in that it’s purposefully placed in low-lying areas of a parking lot to catch and redirect water runoff. Another use for the catch basin is the ability to control and direct water flow through the lot.

Components of a Catch Basin

A catch basin is a simple system that consists of a sump, inflow and outlet pipes, and a grate. The grate is where stormwater enters and is the only sign that a catch basin is in the lot, as it sits flush with the surface of the parking lot. All of the other parts are buried below the surface of the lot and connected to the storm drainage system throughout the parking lot.

The sump captures sediment, debris, and associated pollutants. Two pipe fittings are placed in an offset manner at the middle of the sump for inflow and outlet to complete the catch basin. The inflow pipe is set higher than the outlet pipe to control the flow and prevent large pieces of debris from reaching the outlet. A tee or elbow pipe is installed on the inside of the sump on the outlet side as an additional method of controlling debris.

How It Works

A catch basin is a simple system that lets water flow through from the side and the top, then lets it flow out at a regular pace. The water enters the catch basin through the grate and from an inlet pipe, then flows out through the outlet pipe, where it either empties into the stormwater system, a sewer system, or a retention pond.

The inlet and outlet pipes are set halfway down the side of the basin to create a trap or sump. This allows sediment and debris to settle into the trap. An elbow or T pipe further aid in the prevention of debris leaving the basin and clogging the drainage system.

Why Your Parking Lot Needs a Catch Basin

Your parking lot needs a catch basin to help control the flow of water to the sewer or drainage systems. It has a collection box that catches debris that would otherwise impede the flow of water and ultimately clog the drains. A catch basin also prevents water from pooling and standing on the surface of the parking lot.

Controls Flow

A catch basin can be placed in areas of your parking lot that catch more water than other locations of the lot. The basin holds the water under the surface of the lot and releases it to the storm drains as water levels recede. In turn, water drains at a predictable rate as opposed to attempting to flow out all at once and backing up.

Catches Debris

Debris of all forms find their way to parking lots and are prone to clog drains whenever it rains. A clogged drain results in water backing up onto the surface and causes parking lot flooding. A catch basin gets around this problem by having a larger grate that allows debris to flow in and get caught before it enters the storm drains.

A catch basin can easily collect debris, prevent it from flowing out, and let water drain through. It’s a passive system that provides active protection of your parking lot during a rainstorm.

Helps the Parking Lot Last Longer

Standing water is the enemy of a parking lot as it corrodes. Water that sits on the surface of an asphalt parking lot eventually finds its way through the small cracks of the aggregate and eats away at the underlayment. Cracks start to form on the asphalt surface, which eventually leads to the formation of potholes.

The Importance of Regular Maintenance and Cleaning of a Catch Basin

One of the purposes of a catch basin is to collect debris of all kinds and prevent it from clogging the drainage system. This means the debris collects at the bottom of the basin and builds up over time. If the basin isn’t cleaned on a regular basis, the debris can eventually clog the pipes.

Cleaning the catch basin is as simple as removing the grate and using a shovel to remove the debris that’s collected in the sump. You can also have a professional cleaning company vacuum out the basin and remove what’s been collected. Make sure that you clean the basins regularly to keep them at their most effective.

Your Parking Lot Benefits From Having a Catch Basin

A catch basin provides multiple benefits that go beyond controlling water runoff. It also reduces the amount of contaminants that are likely to reach local bodies of water. This simple system also aids with groundwater recharge.

Get Help To Determine if Your Parking Lot Needs a Catch Basin

A catch basin plays a crucial role in controlling the flow of water through your parking lot. Get in touch with us today at U.S. Pave to schedule a professional consultation and have one of our experts evaluate your parking lot. We can identify problem spots in your lot and arrange to have catch basins installed and connected to your storm drains for optimal drainage and protection.

Interior of Nyloplast drain basin by Aaron Volkening is licensed with CC BY 2.0

Posted on behalf of US PAVE

U.S. Pave is a full-service paving maintenance and installation company serving all of Florida with Parking Lot Maintenance, New Asphalt Construction, Asphalt Patching and Repair, Parking Lot Crack Repair, Pothole Repair, Parking Lot Resurfacing (Overlay), Parking Lot Sealcoating or Resealing, Concrete Maintenance, Concrete Flatwork, Concrete Car Stops, Flow line / Curb & Gutter, Trip-hazard Removal/Grinding, Parking Lot Striping, Signage, Bollards, ADA Compliance and Upgrades, Catch Basins, Sweeping and Porter Services.

Whether you’re in need of a small repair or a new construction project, U.S. Pave's dedicated team has you covered.

For more information on our services contact us today at (954) 210-7481.

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