The Importance of Headwall Maintenance and Rehab

Headwall Repair Maintenance Florida

Headwalls are a key feature of municipal drainage systems, protecting pipes and the surrounding area at both ends. Proper stormwater drainage is essential in areas prone to flooding or heavy weather, and even in less rainy regions the runoff has to be handled to avoid soil erosion.

If you’re in a position where a headwall fails, it’s important to know that it can lead to increased erosion, drainage pipe damage or even the collapse of the inlet or outlet. If this isn’t exactly your area of expertise – no problem. Our team of headwall experts put together this overview of how to both avoid and react, if faced with a tough headwall situation.

What a Headwall Needs to Do

Headwalls provide multiple functions related to drainage:

• They act as retaining walls for the slopes they’re built into, keeping the soil in place
• They provide structural support for roads overhead and protect the pipe running through
• They control the flow of water at the inlet and outlet with concrete wings
• They limit plant growth that could block the pipe.
• They cover the end of the pipe and limit corrosion

To protect the long-term integrity of the area, it’s essential that any faults are detected and mitigated by professionals.

Headwall Inspections

Headwalls are frequently made from precast concrete, though some are instead made of plastic or stonework. Plastic can bend under high stress or degrade in sunlight, while concrete and stone can crack or suffer abrasion in time. Regular maintenance allows structural damage to be detected early on before it has the chance to worsen.

Besides the structural integrity of the headwall itself, the seal between the headwall and the pipe is crucial. This is what allows the headwall to protect the pipe’s inlet or outlet from damage—high turbulence, abrasion, corrosion, etc. Also, it’s necessary to occasionally clear away debris or plant growth blocking the pipe and check to make sure the soil under the headwall hasn’t eroded or sunk.

Generally, headwall inspections should be performed on an annual basis, preferably when water levels are lower. Following a storm or flood, inspections are also necessary.

What Repairs Look Like

Depending on the scope of the damage, headwall rehabilitation can range from spot repairs to full replacement of the installation. Smaller cracks are repaired with concrete patching compounds, epoxy or mortar depending on the construction material. A damaged seal can be managed similarly. If the headwall is split more severely, though, it must be removed to allow a new one to be installed, which is often a costly endeavor. Proactive maintenance prevents the need for this.

Don’t Take Any Chances, Work With The Pros

To keep headwalls in fit shape, turn to professional contractors specializing in erosion control. All State Civil Construction provides this service and more for the state of Florida.

Contact us online or call our team directly at (386) 465-2187 to learn more about what we can do for your project today!



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