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Drainage Solutions for Housebuilders

House building is a growing sector with house starts having risen by 31% to March 2014, compared to the previous year according to the Department of Communities and Local Government. For developers and house builders, there are many considerations, but an integral factor to the quality, longevity, aesthetics and ultimate saleability of a property is product quality and performance.

In the case of drainage, it is core to the functionality of a property and the use of high quality materials and appropriate drainage solutions can save money further down the line, reducing the need for premature refurbishment or maintenance.

Property buyers are discerning customers, who expect the highest levels of quality and design. Whilst drainage often goes ‘unseen’ by a property owner until something goes wrong, choosing appropriate drainage designs and solutions can help to prevent problems. An example of this is surface water management, where mesh grating designs, for example, can prevent leaf and debris entering drainage channels and causing a blockage; the main cause of pooling.

In the case of block pavior covers, the cover is frequently the finishing touch to an expensively layed patio or driveway. Features such as integral lifting keys, high quality galvanised steel, designs which stop the cover jamming into its frame and flanges which help with solid bonding of the frame to the groundwork, can all add value to a home owner’s experience.      

A sure sign of a blockage or problem is an unpleasant odour.  The use of sealed and locking cover designs not only stops such odours escaping, but also provides added security against gaseous or liquid ingress.

Health and safety, as always, is high on the agenda. Slips and trips can be avoided using slip resistant tread patterns for drainage covers and additional features, such as captive locking and fastening designs, mean covers stay firmly in place within the frame and will not slip off the chamber, adding to a homeowner’s safety and peace of mind.

For house builders, however, there will always be the struggle between ideal specification and budget, but it can be argued that drainage is so fundamental to a property that this is not where costs should be cut. With improvements in material technology, there are many different drainage products now available to suit all specifications and budgets, with companies supplying off the shelf and bespoke solutions tailored to house builders’ specific needs. Choosing the right materials can save time, money and effort further into the project. Choice of light weight materials for ease of installation, heat resistance to tarmac edging, chemical resistance, freezing temperatures and other factors need to all to be considered as part of the build project and costings.    

Ultimately, the quality of manufacture, reliability and longevity in performance of drainage products will need to be considered as quality expectations continue to rise in the house building industry.

- Uploaded 20/05/2014