SiteStak Wide Drone MJ Evans
Calendar 9 April, 2019 (Updated 22 March, 2023)

How to store PVC drainage materials and pipe prior to installation

This guide relates to the storage, transport and cutting of PVC plastic drainage pipe on building sites in the UK. Commonly used pipe sizes are 110mm and 160mm.

Recommended Drainage Pipe Storage

Drainage pipe is normally delivered in pack quantities. Typically for 110mm pipe this is 50 pipes and for 160mm pipe this is 35 pipes. Standard pipe lengths are 3m or 6m. Packs of pipe should be unloaded onto a relatively flat firm surface and not left exposed to sunlight for longer than necessary. Once pipe needs to be used, the banding must be cut, and the wooden packing strips removed. Due to their shape, the pipe lengths tend to end up in an untidy mess at risk of damage from excavators, dumpers and other machinery and at risk of warping in the sun.

Pipe Infographic White

Manufactures and drainage suppliers will often refuse to take responsibility for damage to products once they have been delivered. The responsibility lies with the Groundworks Contractor and until SiteStak there was no solution to this problem.

How to avoid Pipe Warping

Prior to installation drainage pipes left in the sun during warmer summer months will heat up. If the extruded pipe lengths do not have enough support, they will inevitably bend and warp in the sun and once the temperature drops (at night for example) they will hold the warped shape. The best way to avoid this is to store the pipe lengths in a SiteStak Drainage Pipe Site Storage Rack. This supports 60% of a 6m pipe length once the banding has been removed.

Messy Building Site Drainage Mess on a construction site compound Messy building site buried materials Messy building site inadequate storage Messy building site damaged materials Messy building site pile of pipes messy construction site

Drainage Fitting Storage

Most manufacturers recommend storing drainage fittings in the plastic bags provided in a cool place out of direct sunlight. This is to prevent build up of heat within the packaging. In practice, there is seldom a cool place out of direct sunlight to store fittings on site. One option (albeit expensive) could be to use a 20-foot or 40-foot shipping container. Cost aside; however, this is by no means the most ideal solution for the following reasons:

  • Visibility of stock levels – once a container is filled with bags of drainage fittings it becomes almost impossible to see how many of each type are there.
  • Organisation of stock – there are often more than twenty types of drainage fittings in use on site. Sorting through bags or boxes of fittings can soon become very time-consuming.
  • Damage to stock – once materials have been heaped up, it soon becomes necessary to stand on some to reach others. Clambering around a container to find the fittings required can not only damage materials but also pose a health and safety concern.

Many sites ignore the manufacturer's recommendations and simply store drainage in a corner of the site which soon becomes a mess. Contractors could consider a SiteStak Fittings Store for bulk storage of drainage fittings.

SiteStak Construction Site Cartoon Mess

Stock Control System

Any construction buyer will be familiar with calls from site claiming that materials have not arrived, have gone missing or can’t be found on site. In the confusion of a busy site and the prevalent mess of untidy materials storage it can be all too easy to misplace materials on a large site. Over-ordering and under-ordering of materials can cause delays on site or lead to wasted materials. Only with SiteStak can you see stock levels of drainage materials at a glance.

Watch How to Store PVC Drainage Pipe and Fittings. Mobile Workstation for Storing, Moving and Cutting Pipe on YouTube.

Transporting Drainage Materials on Site

Traditionally, drainage pipes are moved either by telehandler or excavator forks when in pack quantities. Once a pack of pipes is opened, pipes are moved by hand, but any surplus pipes are at risk of damage. Drainage fittings are either carried by hand in plastic bags or loose to the point of work. Sometimes an assortment of fittings is placed in a dumper bucket and tipped onto the ground at the point of work. Here, they are immediately at risk of damage from moving machinery or wastage as any surplus fittings are left half buried in the mud.

The SiteStak System has been designed specifically to solve challenges with storage and transportation of drainage materials. It reduces wastage of products, protects them from damage and makes it them easier to transport around site directly to the point of work. Once at the point of work it also provides a dedicated workstation for cutting and chamfering pipe, storing associated tools and attaching fittings to the pipe while installing drainage. Once the drainage installation is completed on one section of a site it can simply be picked up with either using the fork pockets or lifting eyes and moved to the next phase of the project. At the end of the job rather than wasting excess drainage materials they can be moved in the SiteStak workstation to the next project.

Front view of a SiteStak workstation full of underground drainage

Drainage Pipe Workstation and Tool Storage

As well as storage of both drainage pipe and fittings, the SiteStak Workstation includes pipe cutting guides to hold pipe at an ergonomic height while working with pipe. A tool shelf keeps commonly used hand tools and equipment including handsaws, drills, files, lubricant and tape measures out of the mud and near at hand. One of the most commonly cut pipe lengths is 600mm rocker pipes, the SiteStak includes a handy rocker cutting bay at the relevant length to speed up this process. A steel ruler is attached to the face of the tool shelf for making accurate shorter cuts.

Watch How to cut drainage pipe perfectly straight every time! on YouTube.
Mark Chambers Drainfast Team Portrait

Written by
Mark Chambers

Marketing Manager

As Marketing Manager, Mark plays an active role in running strategic projects to increase our brand profile.

Truck Delivery options

Enter your postcode for delivery timescales, accurate stock levels, and your nearest depot