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How to Choose the Best Tools to Reduce Runoff

Here are some of the industry’s best cost-effective, EPA-compliant tools to reduce polluted erosive runoff.

Dewatering Bags

Dewatering bags are a cost-effective solution as a sedimentation control tool. You can pump water at overly saturated construction sites into a bag, and silt, mud, sand, and other pollutants become trapped. This allows the filtered water to escape into the ground below, or into nearby storm drains. 

Choose high-quality dewatering bags manufactured from UV-resistant, non-woven geotextile fabric sewn with high-strength, double-stitched seams into a completely enclosed bag. The bags should have a sewn-in sleeve to hold the pump discharge hose. Dewatering bags are available in a range of sizes from 5’x6’ to 30’x30’.

Easy Installation

Install on a mild slope so incoming water flows downhill. 

Secure the pump hose to the bag using a heavy-duty pipe clamp, rope, or other means. If using a rope, wrap the rope at least 6X around the hose over a 6” width of the bag. Fasten securely. 

The bag won’t flow if it is on a low permeable or impermeable surface. Instead, place the bag on hay bales, a clean aggregate, or other highly permeable surfaces to maximize water flow. You want the water to be able to flow through the entire bag and filter out from all sides. 

When the pump is started, the dewatered bag will fill with water, sediment, sand, and debris. As the bag fills, the sediment will settle, and the filtered water will be released. 
Dewatering Bag Filled
Keep an eye on the bag while pumping. Make sure the hose stays securely connected and that there is a continuous flow. If the flow appears to be slow or clogged, you may need to move the bag to a surface with higher permeability.


Inlet Protection

Inlet protection devices trap and filter sediment runoff, preventing pollutants from contaminating stormwater systems. They also prevent silt and sediment from clogging stormwater drainage systems. 

You’ll find inlet protection devices on almost every construction site from residential and commercial developments to heavy civil highway and utility projects. They are installed in:

  • Curb inlets
  • Drop inlets
  • Culverts
  • Catch basins
  • Other stormwater system entries


Curb Inlet Protection

There are two types of curb inlets, and both connect stormwater street runoff into stormwater systems.

  1. An open or grated horizontal single opening on the street.

  2. Two-piece curb and gutter with an open curb inlet and a grated or open inlet on the street. Curb inlets may have a grate in front of the gutter opening.


Drop Inlet Protection

Found in parking lots, medians, paved roads, and paved swales, drop inlets always have a grate on the surface. Drop inlet protection devices can be below or above surface, round, square, or rectangular.


Choosing the Right Inlet Protecting Device

There are hundreds of inlet protection devices; however, you should consider these factors when selecting the right inlet protection for your construction project:

  • Type of construction project
  • Phase of construction
  • State, DOT, or inspector requirements
  • Type of inlet
  • Material preference
  • Budget

Some of the Most Effective Inlet Protective Devices

Most Effective Protective Stormwater Devices
If you need help selecting the right inlet protection devices, talk to a White Cap stormwater expert. We’re here to help you understand the wide selection of stormwater tools so you can choose the right product every time.

Sandbags in Action as a Stormwater Solution

Turbidity Curtains

A turbidity curtain is a water barrier that prevents sediment and debris from drifting into open water around shorelines and construction projects. 

Turbidity curtains trap sediment to prevent downstream water pollution similar to the way a silt fence traps sediment and releases filtered water on land. However, these water barriers are used for more than just silt and sediment control. Use Turbidity Curtains to contain marine life, logs, trash, debris, hazardous materials and to provide a detour around marine construction projects and oil spills.


Types of Turbidity Curtains

Water conditions determine which type of curtain your construction project needs.

Type I are for calm water, sheltered from wind and waves. These curtains are perfect for protected areas such as ponds, lakes, and canals. 

Type II tolerates moderate waves and wind. They can be installed in rivers, streams, and lakes with slow-to-moderate currents, up to 2 knots or 3.5 feet per second. 

Type III is designed for fast water. Install these curtains in areas with considerable currents, up to 3 knots or 5 feet per second. Use Type III turbidity curtains if water is tidal or normally exposed to wind and wave action.

Custom Made to Your Specs

Every curtain has a floatation device that rides the top of water line and a skirt that extends from the floats to the floor of the body of water. Water conditions determine which type of curtain your project requires, but the curtain’s size, permeability, and additional features can be custom manufactured to your specifications.



Manufactured in 50’ or 100’ sections, curtains can be connected with heavy-duty galvanized clips included on the floating device. 

While most curtain skirts are 3’ or 5’ long, a curtain’s skirt length can be custom-fabricated to meet the needs of your specific project.


The curtain’s material determines its permeability. 

  • Impervious - Curtains are made from PVC-coated polyester and used to contain silt and prevent materials from flowing through it. 

  • Pervious - Made from woven geotextile fabric, these curtains are used when a “flow through” application is needed, but they will also contain most silt and sediment.

Additional features may be required for hazardous spills and marine clean-up projects:

  • Oil containment booms
  • Marker lights
  • Buoys
  • Anchor Systems
  • Concrete Washout Pans
Stormwater Management - Water Treatment Plant

Concrete Washout Pans

Be BMP compliant and avoid expensive EPA fines when you use concrete washout pans. 

Portable, easy to set up, and convenient, washout pans are designed for containment of hazardous construction site materials including concrete, sediment, paint, drywall mud, stucco, and mortar. With concrete washout pans, construction sites are well-maintained, environmentally friendly, and BMP compliant.


We’re Here When You Need Us

For every job, you want the best tools that meet your project’s budget and specifications. Whether you’re looking for an innovative green inlet protection device, custom turbidity curtains, or a fast solution to reduce runoff, you can always count on White Cap to offer you a wide selection of quality stormwater management solutions.
Dewatering Bags
Washout Pans
Building Paper
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