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Inspection chambers, also known as manholes, are access points for engineers to carry out essential maintenance work. They also provide direct access to underground drainage networks to remove potential blockages.
Inspection chambers should be installed wherever a branch pipe meets a main run of drainage. 90% of drain blockages occur either at a branch of pipework, or in the outlet of the chamber itself. It is essential that chambers are installed at these connection points so that general maintenance and blockage removal can be carried out effectively.
Traditional chambers were designed in a way that would allow a person to climb inside to perform an inspection or repair of the piping system, although this is not always the case. CCTV drain surveys and high pressure water jetting can be carried out via manhole chambers in order to remove blockages.
Most modern chambers are now made from plastic as it is a cheaper alternative to traditional metal and brick solutions. However, if the chamber lid is put under constant stress from heavy loads such as HGVs and forklifts, it would be better to install a metal frame and lid.
Our ‘Help & Advice’ section provides more information about access chambers and how they connect underground pipework..