Some people may raise an eyebrow at the term "french drain", but in actuality it is a simple concept. French drains, sometimes known as drain tile or a perimeter drain system, manage rainwater and other surface water around homes and other buildings. The basis of a french drain is a shallow trench in which a drain pipe is laid, but the traditional french drain is a trench filled with gravel. Trench sizes can vary depending on the project, but usually they are a minimum of two feet deep by one foot wide. A perforated drainage pipe sits at the bottom of the trench and gravel covers the pipe and fills the trench's center. Generally, the french drain is covered with landscaping fabric, as this will prevent soil from entering the gravel layer and clogging the spaces between the gravel. Next, you can lay sod, soil or groundcover over the completed trench. French drains are common and generally chosen for managing surface water because they require minimal maintenance once installed.
Many homeowners use french drains to connect to a home's gutter system to redirect rainwater. The downspouts connect to a buried french drain pipe, carrying water away from home, thus preventing flooding around the foundations and puddles around walkways and patios. French drain systems also use gravity to direct the flow of water. If your neighbor's land stands at a higher elevation than yours, you may experience pools of water on your property due to the slope running between properties. Better yard drainage is needed and french drains can accomplish this through using gravity to redirect the flow of water.
Footing drains, also known as drain tile, are very important in areas where the ground is flooded during any time of the year, especially if the home contains a basement. The best and easiest time to install footing drains is during construction of a home, but installing them later on is key if water enters a basement or if water is constantly seeping into the concrete. The actual installation is fairly simple and should be done to protect the condition of your home.
Footing drains hold water that gathers at the foundation, effectively blocking water from entering the basement. The drains will transport the water away from the house and into a drainage system. During the planning phase of installing a footing drain, make sure to look at the slope of the land as well as the soil conditions. These elements will help plan the best way to assemble the drain so that water can be redirected as well as find any potential natural drainage systems in the area that can collect excess water.
Water runoff from your house or roof can cause water damage to your lawn by creating mud pits or saturated lawns. Drywells are drainage systems that transfer water from one area to another that is better able to absorb it. Drywells are designed for temporary relief in displacing the water such as in a bad rainstorm. The drywell is buried in the ground and underground pipes feed into it to avoid landscaping problems. Once the water reaches the well, it drains into the subsoil. If properly installed, drywells can last up to 30 years and protect your home and landscape. There are a couple of things to consider before installing a drywell. First, determine the elevation of the local groundwater. You want to make sure you position your drywell at the correct underground level. If placed too closely to the surface, it may freeze at low temperatures and if placed too deeply, it will fill with groundwater and be useless in managing aboveground water runoff.
Depending on your property type, one drainage system may work better than another. We are here to assist you in choosing the right drainage system for your home and offer complete outdoor packages for new installation, replacement or restoration. Contact us today for a free quote.