If you are in a position where you need to choose the correct manhole covers, channel drainage system, storm drain or gully grate, you are only able to confidently make this choice if you are aware of the load ratings. The reason that this piece of information is so important is because the class essentially acts as proof that the product has been verified to withstand a certain weight loading. Meaning that before you go to buy one of these you can use this information to know if it is what you are looking for.
So, if we take a cover class like the A15, it would have a load rating of 1.5 tonnes. Which means that it would be used for light jobs and installations and would be no good in areas where heavy vehicles or anything of this kind could potentially cause harm or break the cover. It is paramount that the correct load rating is chosen not only for practical uses, but also for health and safety measures.
So what are the standard weight classes to bear in mind?
The main thing to bear in mind is that, due to BS EN 124:2015, weight classes are universal across the UK. This is basically a standard that means there are certain requirements and measures that have to be met upon the installation of access covers etc. It also helps to give standard categories into which the products can fall into to avoid any confusion. You can find the classes in the list below.
- The A15 class has a maximum load rating of 1.5 tonnes. It would be used for jobs that are light duty. This may include places like garden patios and walking areas.
- The B125 class has a maximum load rating of 12.5 tonnes. You may look to use a cover of this kind in an area like domestic driveways where large 4×4 or work vehicles like vans will be parked.
- The C250 class has a maximum load rating of 25 tonnes. This type of cover would be ideal in an area such as roads that receive light traffic as well as car parks primarily used for private use.
- The D400 class has a maximum load rating of 40 tonnes. Ideally, the D400 cover should be used for main roads, highways and high traffic areas such as public car parks.
- The E600 class has a maximum load rating of 60 tonnes. This would typically be the best choice in areas such as industrial estates or cargo handling yards or delivery depots.
- The F900 class has a maximum load rating of 90 tonnes. This would only be used in places like airports and docks where the load rating has to be extremely high.
Are things different with steel manhole covers and the weight classes for them?
When it comes to the load classes for galvanised steel manhole covers, things are slightly different. The scale for these covers goes from 2.5 tonnes to 38 tonnes. The reason for this is because steel is not as strong of a material as cast iron. You can find the list below to help you.
- The first load rating for steel covers is 2.5 tonnes. This would be used for pedestrian areas and light duty jobs.
- The next load rating is 5 tonnes. This is applicable for driveways that need to take the load of family cars.
- The third load rating is 10 tonnes. This is fine for roads that don’t deal with lots of traffic.
- The next size has a load rating of 17 tonnes. You can use these main roads and highways. Also in public car parks.
- Moving up to the 25 tonne option. This would be used in industrial estates and possibly loading bays.
- The most heavy duty steel cover you will come across will be able to deal with 38 tonnes. This is for extremely duty applications such as a docking area.
Always take advice and speak to a qualified professional if you have the choice before making any purchase like this, because the load class is something you need to get right. The main thing to take into consideration when deciding what is right for the area where you are doing the job is to ask yourself what is going to be the safest option for the people who will be using the area. Please note that with things like this, always be cautious when making your choice. it’s also worth noting that the correct pipes and underground pipe fittings are used with the correct systems also.
If you are unsure about anything written in this guide, then don’t hesitate to contact us and we will do our best to help you and point you in the direction of what will be best for you!
Shop Drainage channel and manhole covers: