Trench Drain FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

You asked, we listened. Find answers to all your technical questions about trench drains, catch basins and accessories as well as installation tips and chemical resistance guidelines.  Be informed before you buy.

If you don’t find the answer to your questions, call our experts at 610-638-1221.

What does Load Rating mean?

Load Rating is measured on the drain system’s compression resistance – how much weight a drain can withstand without structural damage.  These are based on DIN 19580 international guidelines, which separate drainage applications into six categories:

Load Class A

3,372lbs. – 15 kN
Residential, pedestrian, and cyclist traffic

Load Class B

28,100lbs. – 125 kN
Sidewalks, parking lots, and car parking decks

Load Class C

56,200lbs. – 250 kN
Curb sides, highway shoulders, and parking areas

Load Class D

89,920lbs. – 400 kN
Trafficked sections of roads and highways

Load Class E

134,800lbs. – 600 kN
Industrial areas, forklifts, traffic, ports and dock sides

Load Class F

202,320lbs. – 900 kN
Aircraft runways, docks, and high-impact wheel loads

Do I have to use sloped channels?

With smooth interior and radiused bottom, trench drain channels drain surface water effectively regardless of slope. For installations with infrequent water, slopes provide momentum to assist the water drainage to the outlet.

Many trench drain systems that offer sloped channels also have neutral (non-sloped) channels at various depths.  In such cases, specify whether you need non-sloped channels.

I need a project consultant. Who do I speak with?

Trench Drain Systems is proud to offer project consultations for all interested contractors, architects and engineers. Our technical specialists are trained in chemical resistance, load rating and flow rates for NDS trench drain, Polycast trench drain, ACO trench drain, MEA-Josam, ABT Trench Drain, Zurn trench drain and more.

Please call a Trench Drain Systems technical specialist at 610-638-1221.

Why and when do I need a project layout?

Trench Drain Systems requires all customers purchasing pre-sloped trench drain systems to sign off on a project layout. This ensures that outlet depth is correct, preventing costly error and allowing us to ship your order more efficiently.

How do you pack & ship my order?

We have a variety of package and freight carriers we work with. The size of your order will dictate which carrier we use. We pack your order in the best manner to assure safe delivery to your job site.

Whether it’s boxes or pallets, our experienced staff is ready to pack and handle shipping for your order.

What are your return policies?

Trench Drain Systems charges a 25% restocking fee on all returned orders. Due to time and cost, additional charges for custom fabrications, channel miter cuts, non-standard grating finishes and express shipping cannot be refunded.

My drains arrived damaged. What now?

Be sure it is noted that there is damage when you sign for the shipment. Without this notation, we have very little recourse with the carrier.

Trench Drain Systems is not responsible for damage occurring during delivery. However, we are happy to assist our customers with freight claims.

How long does shipping take?

We ship most orders same day or next day depending on what material is in stock. Delivery times will vary based on the size of the order and distance from our warehouse to your jobsite.

What is temperature resistance of Polycast’s polymer concrete drains?

Polyester resin polymer concrete is able to safely handle temperatures up to 150 degrees Fahrenheit without structural damage. For applications with higher temperatures, Polycast manufactures special vinyl ester polymer concrete channels that withstand greater heat.

What is the chemical resistance of Polycast trench drains?

Corrosion resistance varies depending on the chemical. Please review the Polycast Corrosion Resistance Guide for more information.

How wide is the Polycast 600 Series?

Polycast 600 Series, Polycast 500 Series and Polycast 900 Series utilize a 6.25″ (OD) polymer concrete channel. With a 4″ interior channel width, these drain systems have thicker walls than the competition and use the same 5.25″ wide trench drain grates.

What is the slope of Polycast trench drain?

The Polycast 400 Series, Polycast 800 MAXI and the low profile Polycast 500 Series are non-sloped drainage systems.

Polycast 600/700 Series and 900 Series have a built-in .65% slope. These Polycast systems also offer neutral channels to extend the length of the run.

Why does my trench drain need a frame?

Frames reinforce a trench drain’s channel body, protecting the polymer concrete from exposure that stresses the drainage system. With a frame, Polycast polymer concrete trench drain systems can handle heavier loads, earning them a higher load rating. Polycast fiberglass channels incorporate integral frames, which increase durability over competitive brands such as ACO trench drain, MEA-Josam, and Zurn trench drain.

Do NDS channel drains have decorative grates?

Many of NDS’s channel drain systems offer decorative grates. The NDS Mini Channel and Spee-D Channel systems provide decorative plastic grates as well as decorative cast iron grates. The NDS Dura Slope system offers decorative iron grates and perforated stainless steel grates.

Is there an edge line between the concrete/paver and the grate?

Because NDS grates rest inside the lip of the channel, there is an edge line where the channel is visible. New decorative plastic grates for the Mini Channel and Spee-D Channel eliminate the edge line, which lends the drain systems more decorative appeal.

Can NDS trench drain be used in in driveways?

NDS Dura Slope and Pro-Series channel drains can withstand load traffic on driveways with proper grating. The NDS Spee-D Channel can be installed in low-traffic driveways if it is recessed 1/4″ in the concrete.

The Micro Channel and Mini Channel systems are not rated for vehicle traffic.

Why do I need a coupler for the Mini Channel and Spee-D Channel drains?

Because they do not feature tongue-and-groove connection mechanisms, the Mini Channel and Spee-D Channel by NDS use a plastic coupler to connect channels together.

Kristie PohlmanTrench Drain FAQ