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Flooding

  • How do drainage pumps work?

    drainage pumps

    Drainage pumps are often installed to move waste-water from a range of domestic and industrial sites, including private housing, farmland, and construction sites. They deal in underground dewatering, usually when gravity can't be applied to move the water (in this respect a drainage pump is similar to a sewage pump). What a drainage pump does is effectively ‘what it says on the tin', however, how they do it is a different matter entirely. This article aims to introduce the how's and why's of non-submersible and submersible drainage pumps.  

    Non-Submersible Drainage Pumps

    A non-submersible drainage pump is not placed directly in water; instead, it uses suction hoses and permanent pipework to transport the waste-water from the unwanted location. This type of drainage pump is often used when pumping waste-water from ponds, and other mobile drainage requirements.

    Submersible Drainage Pumps

    The reputable pump manufacturer Grundfos defines the submersible pump as "an enclosed unit with a close coupled pump and motor, due to its construction, the pumps are suitable for submersible installations – designed to be partially or completely immersed in water."

    A submersible drainage pump will collect water from the base of the unit and transport the water up and out of the system and include a no return valve to ensure there is no potentially damaging backflow. To use the ABS Coronada 250W-SX as an example, it is optimised to work when submerged in several ways. Firstly, the unit is encased in corrosion resistant stainless steel which is vital for the products durability – the model is also equipped with thermal sensors in the motor to prevent overheating. The Coronada is also equipped with the previously mentioned no return valve.

    The Calpeda GXRm 11 fits the similar purpose of draining rooms, water extraction, and can also clean water containing solids of up to 10mm in size. Its operating systems differ in various ways from the Coronada, for example in the Calpeda the motor is cooled by the water passing between the motor jacket and external jacket. However, both jackets are similarly corrosion proof – making both these submersible drainage pumps excellent units for domestic use.  

    Submersible Drainage Pumps & Industrial Use

    An industrial site naturally includes different working conditions when compared to the domestic setting – the Trencher T400F automatic submersible drainage pump is an excellent example to consider concerning industrial conditions.

    Whilst this pump is undoubtedly suited to a residential environment, what makes it uniquely suited to industrial sites is its adept handling of water supply from lakes and rivers. The Trencher is excellent when dealing with sediment removal thanks to its high abrasive resistance resin vortex impeller– which is something more common in industrial sites that often handle raw materials, thus this feature is less likely to be needed in a suburban estate.

    Every pump adheres to its specifications and operating systems, they often share a common purpose but when looking at the ‘how', one must look carefully at the detailed specification pdf's that are regularly available to select the correct drainage pump for you.

  • Fighting off floods: Six tips and tricks

    Floods count as some of the biggest and most costly natural disasters to befall the British people—and the long-term forecast is bleak as climate change predicates longer and more intense rainfall.

    So, get your wellies on, your umbrella out, and give this a good read. The chances are, unfortunately, you’ll need it.

    Know the risk

    In England and Wales more than five-and-a-half million homes are at risk of flooding, and despite the increasing concerns over exacerbated flooding more than 10,000 new homes are built across flood-prone areas in Britain every year.

    Some areas, however, are more prone than others. And though the Environment Agency has said it is impossible to completely protect your property, the Agency can help homeowners with a “flood plan” that could keep you and your property safe.

    Make your house less permeable

    Arguably the best form of damage limitation is to prevent the water from entering your home in the first place. Water often seeps in through doors, air bricks, and other gaps. A form of reverse pressure can even force water to back-up through the sinks, even the dishwasher.

    Fortunately, guards and covers can be fitted in times of emergency, and “non-return” values can be fitted to pipes susceptible to backing up. Be sure to look for any flood-prevention products with the “kitemark” accolade. The kitemark is a symbol that the product has been tested to the rigorous standards of the Environmental Agency.

    Limit the damage with Clarke pumps

    clarke pumps

    The Clarke pumps available in our catalogue are submersible and known for their durability; they operate in dirty water—even water containing solids in suspension—as flood water undoubtedly will have. Now for the ingenious part: the pump has a float switch that enables it to operate automatically, whenever it detects a rise in the water level. So, if disaster strikes, this pump will be one step forward on the road to recovery.

    For more information on the kinds of pumps we sell, check out our article about it here.

    Keep the important belongings safe

    Expensive electrical gadgets, that handmade rug from overseas—any sentimental/irreplaceable belongings should be kept far from range of any floodwater; ideally upstairs, in waterproof cases, even in a different building. The plug sockets, if they aren’t already, should be relocated to higher ground.

    Prepare an emergency flood kit

    Ideally this should contain your ID, a change of clothes, any medication you should require, and some first-aid equipment—in addition to a list of useful contacts such as Floodline and your home insurance and policy number.  

    Be wary of the hidden costs for homeowners on a floodplain

    In addition to the already enormous cost of buying a home in Britain, an increasing number will require substantial investment into flood deterrents. Think, are you buying a home in a flood-prone area? Is it flood-resistant and, is it worth the price if not? It can cost anything up to £5,000 to resist quick, flash floods and this number can be expected to accumulate to as much as £40, 000 in the long term, in the more vulnerable flood hot spots. So think carefully before you commit.

    Do you live in a high-risk flood area? Read our blog here to find out, then take the appropriate measures.

  • The UK Locations Most At Risk of Flooding

    As global warming continues its march relatively unimpeded, sea levels and the incidence of tumultuous weather will continue to rise. And while many may assume that coastal regions of the UK are far and away the most susceptible to flooding, data collected by the Environment Agency actually shows that the network of rivers and tributaries that wind their way throughout Britain make inland areas just as vulnerable.

    Boston and Skegness

    It is however, a coastal region that is most in dangerous in terms of flooding. Boston and Skegness, both perched precariously on the Lincolnshire coast, are subject to frequent storm surges that plague that particular stretch of the east coast. When deep depressions track across the Atlantic Ocean (resulting in lower pressure and rising sea levels) winds push the surface waters forward as part of a process known as wind drift. When these depressions reach the North Sea, they are forced southwards. Because this water cannot escape through the Dover Strait, it accumulates in this region and causes sea levels to rise dangerously, afflicting the east coast in the process. Just earlier this month, over 3000 residents were forced to evacuate their homes in the face of warnings of gale force winds and high tides.

    Nottingham

    Nottingham is perhaps the most populous area that is perpetually under threat of sustaining damages from flooding. The city has been associated with flooding throughout its history, so much so that indentations marking the height of its historic floods have been engraved into Trent Bridge since 1852, and had been marked into the Hethbeth Bridge before it. The concern over flooding is so dire that £1 million of funds have been invested into flood defences to protect the Mapperley Park region of Nottingham. Everything from flood-resistant doors to storm gullies is under consideration.

    Vale of Clwyd

    The low-lying nature of the Vale of Clwyd puts it in jeopardy of regular flooding. The Welsh region owes this unenviable status not only to how low-lying it is, but also to its proximity to both the River Clwyd and the Irish Sea. Any time flash floods are forecast, more than 137,000 properties are at risk of being enveloped by water. The floods that devastated the region in 2012 are just one example of the area being affected by flooding.

    Windsor

    lowara pumps uk

    The River Thames continually threatens to put the residents of Windsor at risk. The 5000 residents that call the river’s banks their home have experienced severe flooding numerous times over the course of the last decade - the worst of which was the floods of 2012. The majority of residents were affected and train lines were wrought with delays and cancellations.

    If you live in an area that poses a risk of flooding, it is well worth opting to buy from lowara pumps UK. With a wide range of drainage and sump pumps available, a Lowara pump is a dependable ally for anyone who is wary of flooding affecting their home.

  • An Introduction to Agricultural Irrigation

    For the unfamiliar, agricultural irrigation is the manual application of water to land for the purpose of growing and sustaining crops. What sounds like a simple process is actually bewilderingly complex at times. With climate and crops differing by region, a variety of irrigation techniques have emerged, which, while useful, also serves to complicate matters further. To help you sift through the confusing world of irrigation, we have produced this guide to the most popular, effective and efficient techniques.

    Flood irrigation

    flood irrigation

    Flood irrigation is the oldest and most inefficient form of agricultural irrigation. As its name suggests, flood irrigation essentially consists of allowing water to flow freely through a field of crops. Its haphazard application makes it an attractive choice for farmers that are reluctant to splash out on a complicated (and sometimes expensive) delivery system of pipes and pumps, but it also makes it extremely inefficient. Over half of the water intended to nourish crops is actually lost to evaporation, run-off, transpiration and infiltration of unintended areas, making flood irrigation a poor choice for those who are environmentally conscious.

    Pressurised irrigation

    Unlike flood irrigation, which can occur almost without human intervention, drip and flood irrigation is reliant on an elaborate system that provides them with a supply of pressurised water. Composed of a water source, a pump that is capable of pressurising the water, as well as a means of actually transferring water to the crops; pressurised irrigation systems are far more complex than their flood irrigation counterparts. This complexity allows pressurised systems to be far more efficient and effective, but it also makes them far more likely to break down.

    Drip irrigation

    self priming pump

    Drip irrigation is, by some distance, the most efficient form of agricultural irrigation, but it is also one of the most difficult to maintain. A network of pipes, interwoven with emitters at strategic locations, allow water to be dropped directly onto the root zone of crops with unerring accuracy, so much so, that it can result in a 95% distribution uniformity, which, for the unaware, is a measure of how evenly water soaks into the ground during irrigation.

    Sprinkler irrigation

    Sprinkler irrigation works in much the same way as drip irrigation does, just in a slightly less efficient manner. Water travels from the source, becomes pressurised thanks to a self-priming pump, and is then distributed across crop fields by a selection of sprinklers. If the sprinklers are positioned optimally, and water is applied in a uniform fashion, sprinkler irrigation can be relatively efficient. What makes sprinkler irrigation less efficient than its pressurised cousin drip irrigation, is that it can be thwarted by adverse weather conditions - even a simple breeze can drastically affect the trajectory of water from sprinklers.

  • How to Decorate Your Bathroom For Halloween

    With Halloween just days away, millions of us are busy worrying about the best way to decorate our homes in a suitably spooky manner for the year’s most frightening day. Out of all the rooms in the house, the bathroom isn’t the one that necessarily screams out scary the loudest. But, after a bit of digging, you’ll find that bathrooms are actually a standard setting for many of the most iconic horror scenes in film history. Taking some creative inspiration from hallmarks of the horror genre Psycho and The Shining can’t hurt when trying to create the perfect bathroom for Halloween.

    Psycho

    Psycho

    The shower scene from Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho is quite possibly the most famous horror scene in film history, and, as the most famous horror scene in film history, there is no better film to take inspiration from for your Halloween-themed bathroom. Positioning a cardboard cut-out figure purportedly clutching a knife behind a translucent shower curtain is the perfect way to echo the film whilst frightening any visitors that are unfortunate enough to enter your bathroom.

     The Shining

    the shining

    After an axe-brandishing Jack Nicholson proclaimed: “Here’s Johnny!’ whilst poking his head through a bathroom door, the scene from The Shining has become a hallmark of the horror genre. A wall decal that vividly depicts the only horror scene capable of rivalling the infamy of the shower scene in Psycho, is one worth having in your home for Halloween.

    Harry Potter

    Moaning Myrtle was an ever-present in the bathrooms at Hogwarts. Whenever she did pop up, she always had an unnerving impact on the viewer initially, but ended up leaving them laughing, which is exactly the impact a Moaning Myrtle decal in your bathroom will have on your guests. Inexpensive but guaranteed to garner a reaction, a Moaning Myrtle toilet decal is the ideal addition for any Harry Potter fan on Halloween.

    The only horror story you have to avoid

    waste water pump

    Spend too much time concerning yourself with making your bathroom look horrifying, and you can end up with a real horror story on your hands. The appliances behind-the-scenes that allow your bathroom to run smoothly on a daily basis are vital. Without a waste water pump, for example, especially given the tumultuous weather of late, you are leaving your home without a line of defence against flooding. By whisking away any encroaching water with speed and ease, a waste water pump will set your mind at ease and keep your bathroom in tip-top shape.

    Bonus tips

    There are a host of simple but spooky changes you can make to your bathroom that don’t involve imitating film. Everything from skull-shaped soap dispensers to pumpkin-adorned bath mats and towels are readily available, and each addition is equally effective at helping to create the perfect Halloween bathroom. A smattering of fake blood is another popular option, but is only worth exploring by the most daring amongst you - both because it is realistic enough to cause genuine terror and because it is likely to give you a fright when you realise how difficult it is to clean up afterwards.

  • Keeping your garden pristine in adverse weather

    Maintaining a garden can be a trying undertaking at the best of times. When the weather isn’t quite in your favour, the work involved can be excessive. Fortunately though, there are a number of measures you can take to ensure the garden that you have invested hundreds of hours of work into remains pristine even in adverse weather conditions - from droughts to floods. Solutions range from permanent to temporary; some require a transformative change in your approach to plant cultivation, whilst others require nothing of the sort.

    Rain

    tt pumps

    Floods caused over £1.5 billion worth of damage during the UK floods of late 2015 and early 2016. Rain is essential for the growth of almost every garden plant yet an overly excessive outpouring can derail the health of even the sturdiest garden. Whilst us Brits are more than well accustomed to receiving our fair share of rain, sometimes it can overwhelm and lead to floods - especially if our gardens lack adequate drainage and runoff.

    The only immediate and 100% effective response is to employ a submersible drainage pump. The trencher range of tt pumps is particularly well-equipped to handle water containing sand and silt, which is common with a flooded garden.

    Wind

    As we transition from summer to autumn, the likelihood of stronger winds multiplies. Burgeoning plants are best supported by wooden stakes that help to prevent them from wilting under the pressure of strong winds. A similarly simple and straightforward countermeasure you can take to safeguard your garden is installing a temporary windbreak - plastic screening tied to a couple of posts is probably your best bet.

    More permanent and natural alternatives require a slightly longer-term approach. Interspersing layers of trees and shrubs can generate a natural windbreak. Similarly, electing to keep trees that border a garden can help to protect the plants within from wind damage.

    Drought

    I am sure the suggestion that areas of the UK are likely to experience drought is likely to raise a few eyebrows, but the effect of climate change has already been dramatic, and drought is a very real prospect every time summer comes around. Ways of combatting drought can consist of the complex and exciting (xeriscaping) to the simple and the mundane (adding mulch and compost).

    Xerophytes are organisms that can survive with little to no water, and are therefore more than capable of outlasting a British drought, which is defined as 3 or more weeks where less than a third of the typical volume of precipitation falls. Acclaimed because of their ability to take on a drought, xerophytes are also popular because they require very little maintenance, making them a very strong choice when a lack of rainfall is predicted. They do however; require an overhaul of your garden if you plan on adopting this approach for your garden in its entirety.

    Simply adding mulch and compost are two far faster and cost-effective ways of fighting drought. Mulch can help off-set high temperatures by up to 10°C, ensuring the soil stays cool and the roots of your plants are able to uptake moisture.

  • How to prevent your home flooding

    Unfortunately, as climate change rages on and continues to worsen over time, so too, does the risk of flooding. Over the past few years, we have seen flooding become an increasingly frequent topic on the news, with intense rainfall causing over £1.5 billion worth of damage in late 2015/ early 2016 in the UK. No longer is flooding something to marvel at with a sense of morbid curiosity as it affects other areas across the globe, flooding is now a very real threat at home as well as abroad.

    How then, can you best defend your homes, containing everything and everyone you love, from flooding? The bad news is this - it isn’t going to be a cheap. The good news is that we are here to advise you on the most cost-effective and worthwhile changes you can possibly make to protect your home.

    Covering air bricks

    air brick

    Air bricks are an easily overlooked flaw in any home’s composition. As effective as they are at allowing air in for ventilation purposes, they are also effective at allowing water into your home. The solution to this problem depends on how much money you want to spend. Smart airbricks have water sensitive valves that close when water is detected. Pretty clever? As you’d expect, they are pretty expensive too. The alternative is a vent guard, which can be snapped shut when relentless rain is forecasted. Less expensive, but also less visually appealing.

    Alternatives to sandbags

    sandbags

    Sandbags are the traditional defence against flooding, but they are also the outdated defence too. Absorbent polymers are the new sand. The reason they are so popular is down to the deficiencies of the sandbag - they are tricky to store, not to mention move, owing to their size and weight. The new school of sandbags only increase in size and weight with the arrival of water, and do not leave behind the same melted pile of sand afterwards.

    Regular maintenance

    window sealant

    While you may be tempted to invest in some of the more heavy-duty anti-flood measures like an anti-flood door, these are unsightly as well as expensive. You would be better off ensuring your home is properly maintained. An anti-flood door is redundant if you have gaps in your roof. That is why it is worth the hassle of having a tradesmen round to shore up your home’s first line of defence against the elements. Doors and windows can be sealed off and any gaping flaws in your roof can be addressed and amended.

    Submersible drainage pump

    ksb pumps uk

    All of these precautions are undoubtedly helpful, yet none of them are capable of providing a 100% fool-proof barrier against floodwater. The one thing you can rely on to be effective is a submersible drainage pump. And there is no better manufacturer to buy from than ksb pumps uk. As well as being renowned for their reliability, the sheer range of variations that are available mean that there is bound to be a pump that is tailor-made for you.

  • How the human race is defending itself against flooding

    Although it might not feel like it, the UK is widely expected to suffer a drought in incoming months. And whilst it may seem like the worst time to start preparing for a flood, it is arguably the best. Floods are often so damaging because the defences made to combat them are often a case of too little, too late. And, unlike a waterlogged garden, you can’t just use drainage pumps. Through months, and sometimes years of preparation, areas of the world have been able to successfully defend themselves against floods. Here are some of the most interesting cases.

    Flood barrierdrainage pumps

    The Eastern Scheldt storm surge barrier in the Netherlands is the largest of its kind in the world. Designed and constructed in response to the devastating 1953 North Sea Flood that proved fatal for thousands, the Oosterscheldekering (as it is also known) incorporates 4 kilometres sluice-gate-type doors that are only closed during adverse weather conditions. It has been so successful that (as part of the broader Delta Works project) it has been named one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World by the American Society of Civil Engineers.

    Hydroelectric dam

    Whilst the Oosterscheldekering is essentially a flood barrier, the Three Gorges Dam in China also doubles as a hydroelectric dam. Because of its 22 cubic km flood storage capacity, the dam is slated to reduce major downstream flooding as an incidence from one in every ten years to one in every hundred years. Alongside its proficiency as an anti-flood measure, the Three Gorges Dam also provides enough electricity to provide for 3% of the national demand.

    Channel modification

     In order to circumvent the pooling of rivers that causes flooding, the river course can be widened, deepened and straightened, to make the speed of flow of the water faster. Channel modification has been carried out on 25% of all the main rivers in England and Wales. While it is clear that channelisation has helped to reduce the risk of flooding, it can also have negative ecological repercussions - the dredging of the Charlton River in northern Missouri in the US caused the number of species present in the modified areas to fall to 13. In the natural areas of the river, 21 different species remained.

    Managed/ ecological flooding

    Ecological flooding is a more recent approach to combatting flooding. Why would you encourage the very thing you are trying to prevent? The answer is that, whilst you are allowing flooding to occur, you are only allowing it to happen in areas that you specify, which prevents it from happening in the highly areas you do not want it to happen. Aside from - diverted floodwaters away from settlements, managed flooding also aids the animal kingdom. An investigation of the ramifications of managed flooding in south-eastern Australia, found that it promoted the diversity of species present.

    Afforestationdrainage pumps

    Afforestation is potentially the most environmentally friendly anti-flood measure. By introducing more greenery, more rainwater is intercepted and used for photosynthesis and consequently prevented from ever reaching the river. The Mississippi River is one notable example of how this approach has paid dividends. As a counter-measure to the 1993 floods, a programme of afforestation was pursued and it has ultimately helped to reduce flooding by reducing the river discharge.

    With global warming making summers drier but winters wetter, do you think we should be doing more to combat the threat of flooding?

  • How to dry out a damp basement

    How to dry out a damp basement with submersible pumpsA damp basement can lead to a number of problems for your home and pose threats to both your health and your safety. Damp in your home has proven links with respiratory problems, asthma and allergies according to the NHS. However, sometimes damp is not as simple to spot as puddles of water accumulating on your floor or massive tell-tale dark patches on your way.

    Damp can come in many forms, such as a feeling of humidity or a stale smell. Floor tiles may also be loose. You must act fast in order to resolve this issue and stop the rot. To avoid any problems with mould make sure you dispose of any furniture affected by the damp and fix the source of the problem.

    The primary three sources of damp are: the seeping in of water from outside of your home, the presence of groundwater amongst your home’s foundations and the possibility of humidity.

    External water

    This is when water infiltrates your home by finding entry through weaknesses in your foundation. The usual culprit of this is the drainage systems in your home, so be sure to check where the rainwater is flowing to during times of heavy storms. Guttering that is clogged up with debris will often lead to the water pouring over and down along your foundations, which can leak into your home. This can be solved by regular cleaning of your gutters.

    Another way this can occur is the improper grading of your home, whereby the water will be directed towards your foundations rather than away. You may have to relay pavement in order to get proper sloping facing away from your house.

    Combat groundwater with submersible pumps

    This is the process of water entering through your walls/floor when the soil the foundations your home is built on is saturated with water. This is one of the more challenging forms of damp in your home to combat, but it is possible. To prevent such a problem occurring in the first place, install some submersible pumps either within your basement or below the surface of it. Read our handy FAQ guide regarding submersible pumps should you have any questions.

    Should the problem have already occurred, if it is a small issue you can attempt to patch the cracks created by the damp yourself. However, large cracks will require help from a structural engineer in order to properly deal with the issue without causing major damage to your home.

    Humidity  

    This can come in two ways: either outdoor or indoor humidity. Outdoor humidity is when moist air creeps into your home and condenses in the foundations of your cool basement. Indoor humidity, caused by such things as improper venting in your home, can also have the same effect. Luckily, this is one of the easiest sources of damp to be able to prevent and can be as simple as installing energy efficient windows or using a dehumidifier in order to prevent any build-up of moist air within your home.

    Worried about basement flooding? Find out how to prevent it.

  • How to avoid basement flooding

    Converting a basement or cellar, or even excavating a new one, is an increasinglysump pumps for flooding popular way of extending your property. It can provide you with more living space, a home cinema, an office or any number of other things. But it’s important to take steps to prevent flooding. Many basements rely on using sump pumps to keep them dry, but there are some other maintenance measures and checks you can carry out to ensure that you don’t suffer from flooding or water damage when the weather turns wet.

    1. Gutters and Drains

    Keeping your basement dry during wet weather actually starts outside the house. Ensuring that your guttering and downpipes are kept clear and that the drains they feed into aren’t blocked by leaves and other debris will help to make sure that rain water is kept away from the base of the building and therefore won’t find its way to the basement.

    It’s a good idea to get your drains checked too. A blockage could lead to flooding, so getting them inspected or cleared out will provide you with extra peace of mind.

    2. Property Maintenance

    You should also inspect the walls of the basement itself and around the outside of your property for cracks and damage that could allow moisture to penetrate. If there is damage, you need to get it repaired as soon as possible before it becomes any worse. If you have basement windows at or below ground level, these should be checked too. Make sure the frames are in good order and that there are no cracks in the glass that could allow water in.

    3. Sump Pumps

    If you have a sump pump, you need to ensure that the sump itself is free of debris. Make sure the pump is working properly too. It may have had an easier time over the dryer months, and you need to make sure it will work when needed. If it does need replacing - perhaps because it isn’t working as efficiently or it’s become too noisy - then it’s best to get it done before it fails completely. See out guide on how to install a sump pump.

    4. Power Supply

    Of course, your sump pump will only work if it has a power supply. If you live in an area that’s prone to flooding and is likely to suffer power failures, then you might want to consider a back-up power source - either using a generator or batteries. It’s worth finding out how long you can be without power before it becomes a severe problem. If you suffer from regular power loss, it might be worth increasing the size of the drainage sump.

    5. Get Insured

    If the worst should happen and your basement does get flooded, then the clean-up costs could be substantial. Make sure that your household insurance policy covers you for flooding to the basement. If it doesn’t, then look at taking out a separate policy, but check carefully what is and isn’t covered and if there is any excess payable should you need to make a claim. Find out more information about flood insurance.

    Shop sump pumps now to avoid your basement from flooding.

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