Why a Commercial Drain Survey Could Save Your Business Money

Drainage – The Forgotten Commercial Property Supply

Commercial premises are served by a variety of suppliers to keep them functioning. These are generally unseen and only come to the business owners attention when the annual, legally-required testing is needed, a bill needs paying or when something goes wrong.

The annual safety checks to your electric and gas supplies should prevent any breakdown which could affect the users of the property. There are, however, other services that do not require a legal check and when they fail it can be equally devastating to a business.

One such supply is the drainage system. This wastewater disposal system is rarely considered until a drain stops functioning, which can lead to slow drainage, bad odours, leaks and even flooding. The consequences to the operation of the property are likely to be inconvenient, unpleasant and will no doubt require financial investment to repair and damage, as well as loss of income to the business.

The Potential Cost of a Sewer Failure to Your Business

It only takes a small amount of abuse of a drainage system for it to fail. Failure can also result from external influences such as tree roots or a broken pipe. Whatever the cause, a backup of drain waste from a kitchen sink or a toilet can quickly lead to localised flooding and a contaminated and unpleasant situation.

Some commercial businesses are not permitted to operate, by law, in the event of a drainage failure, and these include all food and catering industries.

In the case of other businesses, your customers may not want to visit a property that is contaminated, has bad odours and could even be hazardous to health, and staff may not be comfortable working in such an environment.

Ways in Which a Drain can Fail

Drainage pipes are invariably underground and easily forgotten about, so the operation of the drainage system can appear to be functioning properly, even while potential problems are forming.

What you put down a drain can have a dramatic effect on it’s operation, and in a commercial property it is likely you will have less control over how your drainage system is used. This is partly because of the higher number of people using it, and because many of those people are less careful about what is disposed of in a commercial drain than they are at home.

For example, nappies and wipes are often disposed of in public toilets, even though many people would never flush them at home. Similarly, plates and pots are not scraped before being washed, thus clogging up the drains.

External influences, such as high levels of rainwater and damage to the sewer system can also reduce the function of a drainage system. These can be tree roots breaking through and damaging a pipe deep underground, or perhaps a pipe being broken from being overrun by excessive, heavy traffic.

Impact of a Blocked Drain

Whatever the reason, many of these issues will be unnoticeable until such time as the drains fail completely and leaks and flooding occur.

It is then that the cost of having repair works undertaken and areas cleaned and sanitised starts to have an effect. Businesses may also have to close over the intervening period, and there may even be a permanent loss of trade as regular customers look elsewhere to meet their requirements.

Manually searching for the failure point in an underground drainage system can take time, with many trial pits needing to be dug to locate the source of the problem. Obviously, the longer this takes the greater the impact on your business.

How a CCTV Drainage Survey can Help

There is a way to prevent the unexpected happening and that is by having an annual CCTV drainage survey carried out by a professional company.

The survey involves a small camera travelling through the drainage network and feeding back a visual record of the pipes’ condition to a TV monitor where the operator is situated. The camera can be rotated and guided by the operator to ensure all areas can be seen and recorded clearly. The camera also has a measuring system so that the exact location of any defect is ascertained.

The survey can be carried out from any drainage chamber on the system, so internal access to your property is not always required.

A full report and DVD quality footage will be provided of the survey, which will list any recommended remedial measures and potential future problems.

In the event that the drain has already failed, a CCTV survey can locate the failure point and the cause so that repairs can be made quickly.

About Express Drainage Surveys

Express Drainage Surveys have been carrying out CCTV surveys for private and commercial properties since 1991 throughout the South West of the UK. The expert team can not only carry out the CCTV drain survey, but are also able to identify any potential problems and undertake any remedial or repair measures.

All surveys are done by accredited engineers and with a free estimates you can compare the cost of an annual survey to the upheaval and expense that could occur in the event of a drainage failure.

If you want to minimise the risk of disruption to the daily operation of your business, then scheduling a regular commercial CCTV drainage survey, alongside your annual PAT testing and fire alarm checks, is a positive investment.