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A History Leading to Water Filled Dams

Early in history, dams were inspired by beavers as people used wood pilings laid intricately in order to divert water. Until the early 20th century, cofferdams – temporary enclosures in or around a body of water – were built by filling containers (bags, tubes, etc.) primarily with sand, concrete and/or rock and then positioning the containers to form a barrier. However, these cofferdams were extremely labor-intensive, cumbersome, and not a reusable form of barrier. Though the dam has been around since before the time of the pharaohs, there’s been constant improvements in the materials and efficacy of the materials, which leads us to present day inflatable, reusable, water inflated cofferdams. These water-filled dams offer an updated approach, with increased effectiveness, less required laborers, and lower cost.


Water filled Cofferdams(The start of a cofferdam in the mid-20s)

Dam-It Dams, Inc. now uses on-site water to fill dual inner tubes that cause the water filled dam chambers to slowly and evenly inflate, forming a strong and stable cylindrical tube. As the inner tubes continue to fill, and the water pressure builds, the dam unrolls in a controlled manner to create the cofferdam. The updated and efficient process provided by a water filled dam allows workers to perform their otherwise “in-water” tasks in a safer dry environment by temporarily pumping or barricading the water from the site elsewhere and permitting work to be done below the waterline.


inflated-cofferdam(A fully inflated cofferdam filled with on-site water)

There are many advantages to using water filled dams:

  • Fill material (i.e., water) is readily available on site in nearly unlimited quantities
  • Water inflated cofferdams are easily and quickly filled with even distribution
  • They can be molded to perfectly fit a lake bed, river bed, watershed or any other type of physical setting, and even around your residence or other structures
  • Water filled dams make for an excellent seal and help to ensure minimal on-site water escape
  • Water filled dams are reusable and easily installed to minimize additional investment costs
  • Dam-It Dams’ water filled dams, and others like them, work with Mother Nature, not against her, to create effective water barriers that leave only a minimal, if any, trace on the surrounding environment.
  • Geo-textile material used to create the cofferdam provides a strong puncture-proof surface

For those reasons, and many more, water inflated cofferdams are far superior to their predecessors and will continue to prove their usefulness for years to come.



For more information about Dam-It Dams’ water-filled cofferdams, applications, and installation, contact our knowledgeable team. For a free quote, click the button below.

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