Okay, let’s test your stormwater reg knowledge: If the closest stream, river or lake is miles away, you’re not going to spill pollutants directly into a waterway, right?
Actually, that’s incorrect. Your risk of polluting that stream, river or lake is as close as your nearest storm drain — where rogue liquids can escape directly into the groundwater and eventually into a waterway. And that can mean a hefty fine that will quickly drain your bank account.
Keeping spills out of your drains isn’t as hard as it seems — especially if you use a drain cover. It’s one of the easiest, most cost-effective ways to cover and seal a drain to prevent unwanted liquids from entering. There are a lot of choices out there in materials such as vinyl, clay, urethane and rubber. There are even magnetic drain covers. Here’s what you need to consider in selecting the right drain cover for your application:
1. Ease of Deployment
Some drain covers require you to position the cover and fasten it to the drain in order to block the liquids. Other covers, such as clay, require you to mold the drain in place to make a positive seal. Some drain covers use magnets to attach to drains (I never quite figured out how that works on non-ferrous drain covers). The most efficient, easy-to-use drain covers simply need to be laid into position on the drain and they start working immediately.
Above all else, a drain cover needs to stop liquids from getting in the drain and be easy enough to use that you won’t hesitate when the time comes. Whether the cover will be placed into a regularly scheduled routine maintenance application or reserved for emergency use only, you need something that will quickly and easily seal – and can be removed easily as well, and even cleaned and stored for future use. It may be worth checking the seal with plain water to see if the drain cover actually stops the liquids from reaching your drains.
2. Ruggedness and Reusability
Due to its simplicity, ease of use and resistance to chemicals, the most popular type of drain covers are made of some form of urethane. The soft, pliable urethane used in drain covers seals to most clean and dry surfaces – but not all urethane covers are the same. It’s tricky to get the right urethane formulation that provides the right combination of drain-sealing ability, durability and re-usability.
Urethane is inherently intolerant of UV exposure. Did you know that polyurethane can begin to become unstable, brittle or even begin to meltdown in the presence of sunlight in just a few hours? Not good if you’re using it outdoors. New Pig invented a way to protect urethane from these harmful rays with our Patented DrainBlocker line of products. Our drain covers are equipped with a DuPont Elvaloy PVC top layer to deflect UV light and prevent it from reaching the lower layers, so the polyurethane seal continues to do its job, night and day. We tested competitor urethane covers without this PVC layer (you know, those products that look like a thick Fruit Roll-Up- and seal about as well) and found that those drain covers start to degrade and begin to turn back into their natural liquid state in only a short amount of time in the sun.
The PVC layer on the drain covers not only protects the urethane but it also gives the entire product increased strength to prevent tearing and deformation when removing the drain cover. If you’ve ever tried the cheaper drain covers you know that they have a tendency to stretch like a rubber band and tear easily when trying to pull them back up. This relegates the cheaper covers to one-time use only and in the long run, makes them a more expensive alternative to our much more resilient DrainBlockers, which have a typical life expectancy of up to 5 years. The Elvaloy DrainBlockers are best suited for use indoors or outdoors where only foot traffic and light, hand-pushed carts will be used.
3. Traffic Applications
What if you need a drain cover for an area that gets vehicle traffic – anything from light vehicles to heavy-duty 18-wheelers? We’ve got you “covered” there too! Our Drive-Over DrainBlocker can handle all kinds of traffic. The Drive-Over DrainBlocker Drain Cover has an incredibly tough top layer called HogHyde that is puncture resistant and can withstand just about anything you can throw at it. Just like the Elvaloy PVC, this HogHyde will block harmful UV light and protect the urethane for years. The Drive-Over DrainBlocker is made to shrug off the toughest abuse and keep on sealing. Both DrainBlockers have high resistance to chemicals and can be removed, cleaned, and stored for multiple uses.
UV-protective, super-strong, tight-sealing PIG DrainBlockers go the extra mile to help you stay in regulatory compliance. Go ahead and compare the limited-use competitor drain covers to PIG DrainBlockers. We think you’ll choose our PIG DrainBlockers every time. If you have any questions or need help selecting the right DrainBlocker for your needs, please contact us and we’d be glad to help.
Now that you know how important it is to keep your drains covered, get a PIG Drain Cover to protect your facility and the environment.