Water-inflated cofferdams are a temporary damming option that diverts or stores water and are most commonly used for construction, repair, or flooding protection. But how do they work, and what are the main uses? Read on to learn all you need to know and more about inflatable cofferdams, how they function, and how purchasing or renting one from the team at Dam-It-Dams can help you!
Anatomy Of A Water Inflated Cofferdam
Before we explore the uses and potential of an inflatable cofferdam, we should first establish how they work and what makes them a trustworthy water intrusion protection device.
The internals of an inflatable cofferdam are simple; similar to a water balloon, they are made of a textile material that inflates and has a predetermined shape. Although, the geotextiles, comparable to polypropylene, used in cofferdam manufacturing are far more substantial than the rubber of a balloon and can withstand the pressure of thousands of pounds of water up to a depth that can often exceed ten feet. The makeup of an inflatable cofferdam is usually a single inflatable tube that uses watertight baffles to maintain rigidity and stabilize the dam’s structure. When installed, a deflated cofferdam uses water pumped, often from the very source you are diverting, to fill the tube and provide a hefty, nearly immovable barrier. Finally, for more extensive inflatable dams, an anchor, or several, may be needed to stake the dam to the earth and ensure that large volumes of swiftly flowing water do not cause it to shift.
Uses For Water-Inflated Cofferdams
As we mentioned, most inflatable cofferdams will be used for construction, repair of existing structures, and flood prevention. Some of the most notable use cases for an inflatable cofferdam include the following:
- Building on or near waterways – Further, cofferdams may be used when groundwater intrusion may need to be pumped out of a specific area. Some construction projects that can benefit the most are sewage treatment facilities, bridge construction, and dock facilities.
- Assistance and safety for bridge or dock repair – Inflatable damming options provide a safe environment for workers and reduce the need for overhanging equipment when working on bridges.
- Flooding prevention, generally where you may otherwise use sandbags – Cofferdams offer superior protection from a storm or snowmelt-related flooding. They are easier to set up and require less labor than other water prevention methods.
- Ecological damage cleanup and or prevention – Cofferdams protect against shore erosion by ensuring that topsoil is not removed and sent downstream, or you can use them after an accident to contain certain chemical or oil spills.
Things To Note About Inflatable Cofferdams
If you plan on using an inflatable cofferdam at your next work site or on your property, there are a few essential things to remember. Always clear the area of large debris before installation. While the materials used in inflatable cofferdam construction are incredibly durable, large rocks or other detritus may hinder the dam from having a proper seal and cause erosion under the structure. Additionally, always use the appropriate equipment recommended by your cofferdam consultant when installing or removing an inflatable cofferdam, as damage or severe injury can occur.
Reach Out to Dam-It-Dams For More Information About Inflatable Cofferdam Purchase or Rental
Cofferdams come in all shapes and sizes and are available for rent or purchase. Inflatable dams from Dam-It-Dams are custom tailored to fit whatever situation you may need and can be used repeatedly with proper maintenance, set up, and take down. Don’t risk injury, fines, or property damage when a cofferdam can help. For more information on the versatility of inflatable cofferdams, call us today at 810-695-1695.