HSI Services, Inc. has over 20 years of experience in water management

What Are Water-Filled Dams and How Do They Work?

The process of dewatering worksites has been part of the construction industry for decades. Since it’s such a crucial part of building various structures, the process of dewatering and technology innovations have improved with time. One of the more recent professional improvements and arguably one of the better ones was the introduction of water-filled dams, otherwise known as inflatable cofferdams.

Not sure how a water-filled construction dam is designed to work? Find the engineering details here. #HSIServices #AquaBarrier Click To Tweet

Inflatable cofferdams eliminate extra work, waste, and time that would otherwise be required to remove water from the worksite. They also provide far more effective protection against remaining water than typical construction dams are known to. Let’s take a closer look at what exactly makes up a water-inflated dam and how it works so well.

Anatomy of the Aqua-Barrier

The Aqua-Barrier consists of two large chambers separated by an internal baffle. As the chambers are pumped full of water from the construction site, the baffle begins to experience more pressure on the opposite side from the remaining water. This forces the baffle to lean forward at about a 45-degree angle to the ground, facing the construction site and creating a watertight seal along the bottom. While the Aqua-Barrier’s baffle does require some exposure above the water to prevent runoff, the internal balancing system is proven to work very well in a variety of conditions.

Pro Tip: Watch a cofferdam in action with AquaComp, our free computer program to help you find the Aqua-Barrier your construction site needs!

Installing an Inflatable Cofferdam

During construction projects near water, you’ll be dealing with either stationary water or a slight current. The Aqua-Barrier works in both, but both circumstances require slightly different installation. At its most basic, a moving water installation requires lowering the deflated Aqua-Barrier into the water from above using heavy equipment. A standing water installation, on the other hand, allows the crew to simply unroll the cofferdam at the desired location in the water. Visit our information pages on proper installation for more details.

How to Get One

We offer cofferdams for sale as a permanent addition to your toolbox. However, we also offer rental services for onetime projects or companies interested in taking our equipment for a trial run before purchasing. Contact us to start the process of finding the right Aqua-Barrier size and type for your project.

An Excellent Engineering Advancement

To the construction industry, few things matter more than safety. When it comes to construction near the water, safety is even more crucial as worksites need flood protection and dewatering constantly. That’s just one of many reasons why water-filled dams, and the Aqua-Barrier in particular, are such excellent inventions for the construction field.

Join the conversation to learn more about our water-filled dams and other construction safety products.

Please give us a call at 936-372-1222 or toll-free at 800-245-0199 to get started.