Existing Drains: FAQs

Why is it important to know the whereabouts and working conditions of existing drains? The importance of the location and condition of any existing drains on your property, land or development is a vital piece of information to avoid having damaged drains or incurring any fines.

Firstly, drainage maintenance is a key part of keeping drainage systems in good working order to avoid blockages and leaks. Secondly, it’s imperative to know where your drains are if you are planning to either connect to an existing sewer, undertake a build-over extension or carry out any further works around your property.

Who owns existing drains?

  • When you are re-developing land that has an existing public sewer connection, it’s important to check the location and ownership of sewer connections to the public sewer before any phase of work begins.  Connecting to the public sewer requires permissions from the Local Water Authority responsible for this infrastructure, you read about how to do this in our blog here.
  • Detached houses: assuming the property has no shared drains, the homeowner will be responsible for drains within the property boundary, and the Local Water Authority will be responsible for the main sewer and lateral drains.
  • Terraced or semi-detached houses: in this type of property is common to have a shared drain with your neighbour, whilst the Local Water Authority will be responsible for the shared drain as well as the lateral drains, you are only responsible for the drain on your property that is not shared.

Flats or apartments: typically, the building management company are responsible for all drains within the property boundary and the Local Water Authority for drains beyond that.

How can I find out who owns existing drains?

Plans of your property, usually supplied during the sale, should show which drains are within the property boundary and where these are. If you do not have the plans for your property, your Local Water Authority or Council should be able to provide you with this information as well as information about the connecting sewers. You can read more about this here.  

What service and maintenance do existing drains need?

Existing drains, like any piece of hardware in constant use, need maintenance, monitoring and upkeep to manage wear and tear and avoid any leaks, breakages or blockages in the pipes. Getting your existing drains checked out by a drainage specialist will give you information about the state of the pipes and any work needed. It can also help to avoid delays or unexpected expenses once a project has commenced.

How are existing drains surveyed?

Premier Drainage Solutions advise a CCTV survey to evaluate the existing pipes and sewer connection. The CCTV drainage survey shows any defects and helps us to determine whether we need to carry out pipe lining, either on a localised patch repair, or the entire length of pipe to the public sewer. CCTV footage of the re-lining can also be submitted with an indirect application to the water authority.

What problems do domestic drainage systems have?

A property’s drainage system may have cracks or displaced joints or suffer from the common problem of root ingress from any large trees nearby. If a blockage or leak occurs, a CCTV camera survey can diagnose such problems and allow us to determine the best repair solution. Failure to repair a drainage problem can result in flooding, leaks, foul odours and structural damage.

Does repairing existing drains mean digging?

We have invested heavily in advanced ‘no-dig’ drain relining technology, which enables the repair of damaged drains and pipes without ever having to break ground. It’s the most cost-effective and convenient method available for the repair and renovation of domestic drains and one that we always recommend to minimise disruption.

What does pipe relining involve?

A resin-impregnated felt material, which is specifically tailored for the length and thickness of pipe that you have, is placed into the damaged area. It is then pressurised with either water or air. Once the resin has cured, the drain becomes functional again.

When do you need a patch repair?

If only a short section of drain requires attention, a patch repair may be the ideal solution to your problem. We impregnate a fibreglass mat with a silicate resin and insert it into the drain over the affected area. We then pressurise the patch liner against the wall of the drain using a packer. Once the resin has cured, the packer is removed, providing a guaranteed structural repair.

What is milling?

Milling machines are used for quick and efficient drain cleaning, including soft blockages, scale and calcium build-up, tree roots and concrete deposits, as well as being a solution for failed liners and imperfections in the pipe.

For existing drains, ask the experts

If you’re looking for help with your existing drains, sewer connections, diversions, or adoptable drainage, we can help. Working with us means benefitting from our 40+ years of industry experience and friendly, professional service. We are certified to connect to public sewers and have reached ISO 9001:2015 standards. Premier Drainage Solutions has the knowledge and experience to fully support your drainage works from project design and planning to sign-off. Contact us here.

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