Manhole Covers

Recessed manhole cover with built-in lifting keys
Recessed manhole cover with built-in lifting keys for easy lifting of inside recessed lid

Have a look at the different kinds of manhole covers for paving you can buy at the best prices. You can find manhole covers that will suit any purpose you need. Allowing you to safely cover a drain on a driveway or patio.

 Often called inspection covers, you can choose manhole covers made from steel, cast iron or polypropylene (plastic). With many shapes, depths and sizes available to buy. They can be purchased in circular, square or oblong in shape. They can even be made to convert circular drains to square lids.

Different Kinds of Manhole Covers

All manhole covers fall into 3 distinct categories. These three categories then have varying weight carrying strengths according to how the covers are going to be used. As well as three distinct shapes which are square, round and oblong. If the manhole cover is going to be driven on with vehicles then you must install a suitable cover that will allow the weight of the vehicle. If the cover is just going to carry the weight of pedestrian traffic then the cover will be different in strength again. The built-in strength of the manhole cover usually reflects in the price to buy the cover. The higher the load bearing qualities of the manhole cover usually the higher the cost to buy the manhole cover.

Always ensure you check to see if the manhole cover you buy is suitable for the kind of traffic it is expected to carry. The three different categories are –

  • Solid top manhole covers. These include cast iron, plastic or steel covers but they all have a solid top.
  • Recessed manhole covers. These kinds of covers allow you to place a material inside the cover lid. This material could be tarmac, block paving, paving slabs, concrete, turf, grass or stone gravel chippings.
  • Convertible manhole covers. These covers allow you to convert a drainage hole from one shape to another. IE. Circular drain to a square manhole cover or visa-versa.

A large range of different types of designs, materials and shapes of manhole covers made by Clarke-drain, Ecogrid and many other manufactures can be seen here

Solid Top Manhole Covers. Cast Iron, Plastic and Steel

Cast Iron Manhole CoversYou can find solid top manhole covers that are made from cast iron, plastic (Polypropylene), steel or a combination of steel and plastic.  These solid lid manhole covers can be found for sale all at various prices to buy. Some are manufactured to take pedestrian traffic whilst some are made to be fitted to a driveway or highway to be able to carry the weight of vehicles.

The sizes of cast iron, plastic and steel inspection covers that can be purchased are similar to other regular sized covers. Typical sizes of cover ranging from the popular 450mm x 600mm for private & domestic patios and driveways to larger 600mm x 600mm covers for industrial and highway uses.

Always check to see what weight you need the cast iron cover to carry before you buy. Some covers will only take the weight of a person whilst some covers are designed to carry heavy commercial weight on highways and can carry weights up to 50 + tonnes. On a typical driveway the popular cast iron and steel covers are designed to carry weights of between 2.5 -10 tonnes of weight.

 Recessed Manhole Covers. For Paving, Gravel & Asphalt

Recessed manhole covers for block paving and paving slabs.Recessed manhole covers are very popular when installing paving on a patio or driveway. They can be used to disguise the drain or inspection cover very efficiently. Especially when used for laying block paving, gravel or asphalt inside the lid.

By installing a recessed cover the design and pattern of your paving will flow effortlessly through the cover. Neatly disguising and integrating the cover into your paving design. This can look much neater than a cast iron or steel manhole cover. They help to hide the cover from view.

The recessed manhole covers are simple to install and are available to buy in a range of sizes including square 300mm x 300mm. Oblong 600mm x 450mm and square 600mm x 600mm. The steel tray inserts are available at depths of 100mm, 80mm and 43mm  which make them ideal when laying 50, 60 and 80 mm block paving as the blocks will fit comfortably inside the steel cover.

The new manhole covers have four or two corner holes where you can insert a key into the key slots for easy lifting. When lifted it will allow the lid to be easily removed and then replaced from the rim of manhole cover. Although you can also buy them with locking keys for added security. Or why not have one installed that has lifting keys integrated into the lid of the manhole, that way the lifting keys never get lost.

Convertible Manhole Covers for Paving

Convertible manhole covers allows you to convert round drains to have a square lid coverThis design of manhole cover allow you to change the shape of the drain lid. This could be from a circular drain to a square or oblong lid. They are available to buy to convert from round drain to either oblong or square. You also have the choice to have a solid top or a recessed top.

These designs of manhole cover are becoming very popular choice of manhole cover. This is because it allows the installer to use a recessed cover which when fitted on a driveway or patio hides the cover very well.

Circular or round manhole covers

Circular Manhole CoverSolid top circular or recessed round shaped manhole covers are popular covers. Often found fit in modern style houses on driveways and patios. These round manhole covers for paving can often be difficult to cut paving to fit around. They are usually found fitted above water stop taps and gas stop taps.

Circular inspection covers can be made from cast iron or steel but more often than not they are made from modern plastic called polypropylene. These are very strong and robust.

Paving contractors will often want to convert the round shape of underground drains to a square design to help them with easier laying of the paving material. This is because the design will look more aesthetically pleasing as well as making the paving easier to cut and fit to a circle design.

Recessed circular manhole cover for pavingCircular manhole covers are also available to buy with recessed lids. This allows your paving to be fitted inside the cover.

Round recessed manhole covers for paving are not often used when installing driveways or patios. This is because they are difficult to source, purchase and install. Because they are round it makes it very difficult to cut the paving to not only fit around the cover but also inside the circular manhole cover. The more popular choice among paving contractors is to convert round covers to square or oblong rather than fitting paving inside a recessed circular manhole cover.

Manhole Covers For Turf & Grass.

Recessed covers can also be designed to have grass, turf and gravel placed into the lid. These kinds of covers compliment and disguise the drain. Especially if the drain cover lies within a grassed lawn area.