Like all drainage systems, SuDS components should be inspected and maintained. This ensures efficient operation and prevents failure. Usually SuDS components are on or near the surface and most can be managed using landscape maintenance techniques.


For below-ground SuDS such as permeable paving and modular geocellular storage the manufacturer or designer should provide maintenance advice. This should include routine and long-term actions that can be incorporated into a maintenance plan.


The design process should consider the maintenance of the components (access, waste management etc.) including any corrective maintenance to repair defects or improve performance. A SuDS management plan for the maintenance of SuDS should be prepared.


Table 1 provides a breakdown of typical maintenance requirements. This should include an overview of the design concepts and a maintenance schedule for the scheme to ensure that it continues to function as intended.


In the absence of legislation funding for the adopter to maintain their SuDS may need to be resolved at the start of the development process to ensure that either the local authority, a maintenance company, local residents or the water company have sufficient resources to maintain the system in the long-term.


The level of inspection and maintenance will vary depending on the type of SuDS component and scheme, the land use, types of plants as well as biodiversity and amenity requirements. Further information on maintenance can be found in The SUDS Manual (CIRIA publication C697).


The SuDS scheme is unlikely to be handed over for maintenance until all parties are confident that the scheme is constructed and performs as designed. An interim maintenance plan can be incorporated on larger schemes.


Table 1 Typical inspection and maintenance requirements


Indicative frequency

Typical tasks

Routine/regular maintenance

Monthly (for normal care of SuDS)

  • litter picking

  • grass cutting

  • inspection of inlets, outlets and control structures.

Occasional maintenance

Annually (dependent on the design)

  • silt control around components

  • vegetation management around components

  • suction sweeping of permeable paving

  • silt removal from catchpits, soakways and cellular storage.

Remedial maintenance

As required (tasks to repair problems due to damage or vandalism)

  • inlet/outlet repair

  • erosion repairs

  • reinstatement of edgings

  • reinstatement following pollution

  • removal of silt build up.


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