Why Trench Breakers are Better than Sandbags

Traditionally, sandbags were used to prevent water from running down into pipeline trenches. While they have proven useful in the past, they are far from perfect. Not only do you have to take the time to fill sandbags and put them into place, they don’t always create the kind of seal that you need to keep water from flowing into a trench or prevent erosion. Fortunately, there is an alternative available in the form of polyurethane trench breakers. Let’s take a look at some of the advantages that these protective trench breakers have over sandbags.


Easier to Use

Perhaps the best reason to use trench breakers for your next pipeline project instead of sandbags is because they are much easier to use. Sandbags need to be filled and transported, which can raise the overall cost of your project when you factor in labor and transportation costs. Meanwhile, a spray foam trench breaker can be put into place from the ground, which eliminates the need to actually go down into the trench to put them into place. Trench breakers also eliminate the need to widen a trench. They can be applied as a spray foam that cures and bonds to the trench in about 24 hours, making them much more manageable than sandbags.

Better for Managing Erosion

Erosion is a serious threat to pipeline trenches. It’s a slow and natural process, but it is one of the biggest reasons why pipelines require regular maintenance. While a series of spray foam breakers won’t completely eliminate the need for regular maintenance, they will prevent much of the erosion that can ruin a pipeline installation project. This is because foam breakers provide a tighter seal than sandbags ever will, preventing water from eroding the sides of the trench and keeping the trench itself stable.


Although it can be argued that nothing will be safer for the environment than a simple bag of sand, you will be happy to learn that foam trench breakers are made without CFCs, formaldehyde, or any other components that can harm the environment. When you combine that with the other advantages that these breakers have over sandbags, the choice of which one to use for your next pipeline project is clear.

Spray foam has come a long way in recent years and is easier than ever to install in trenches. There are contractors throughout the country who can help install these breakers for your next project, so don’t hesitate to contact them if you want an alternative to using sandbags to prevent erosion.