Community Insider Winter 2017 - Page 8

WINTER IS HERE … ARE YOUR DRAINS READY? By Spencer Bemus W inter is here, and instead of bringing fire breathing White Walkers, Southern California brings us rain. As we get into the wet season, it is imperative that drain lines and catch basins are free of debris so water can flow freely into the storm drains. There are three major components to a landscape drainage system: the above grade swale, the drain inlet, and the drain pipe. Here are some important tips for maintaining each of these drain components: Concrete Swale (V-Ditch) Keep these clear and free of debris/trash Trim and remove any plant material encroaching on the swale For areas prone to excessive runoff during rain fall, look to install a barrier such as straw wattle, silt fencing or jute netting to help reduce erosion Drain Inlet Remove drain caps, inspect and remove any debris that is accessible by hand Drain covers in turf and hardscape areas should be flat, while covers in planters should be atrium (i.e. ballooned/domed) so that loose debris doesn’t block the inlet during rainfall For inlets that prone to getting clogged, install a secondary filter such as gravel bags to filter debris before reaching the drain Drain Pipe Test flow by running a hose at the end point and check for passing water at each inlet thereafter If water is not passing, it is recommended to contact a licensed plumber to snake and/or jet the lines to allow water to flow freely If the issue still persists it is recommended to replace the drain pipe It makes the most sense to calendar this work so that drains are checked, cleared, and repaired prior to the first significant rain storm of the year. Scheduling a drain inspection for the early summer months to determine what repairs are needed provides for time to obtain proposals and have the repairs completed while San Diego is still dry. Arrange to have leaves and debris cleared from drains in the fall, and have landscape or maintenance contractors check the drains for additional debris clearance needs regularly. That way when (if?) the rains come, the drains are ready! 8 | SAN DIEGO COMMUNITY INSIDER | WINTER 2017 Spencer Bemus is Branch Manager/ Owner at Bemus Landscape Inc., with locations throughout San Diego, Orange County and Inland Empire WWW.CAI-SD.ORG