French Drain Installation
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Is your house or property plagued by water damage, flooding or stagnant water? Installing a french drain might save your home's foundation and the surrounding property. French drains are simple yet effective drainage systems that can prevent flooding, prolong the life of your house and keep water a safe distance from entering basements.

What is a French Drain?

French drains are trenches, typically sloped, filled with gravel and a perforated pipe, designed to divert water from ground and away from a building structure. These versatile drainage systems can be installed both inside and outside of your home or business, tackling various drainage problems. Common drainage problems include the gathering of water at any low point in your lawn and the clogging of debris in your gutters.

A French drain system is the most common landscape drainage system used to alleviate unwanted water from your yard. The system utilizes a gravel-lined channel with an embedded pipe that moves water away from your house.

The pipe is perforated, which means it has drainage holes.  The key is to place the holes facing down into the ground. The bottom of the channel is often lined with filter fabric to keep dirt from washing in and clogging the drain. The collection area is filled to the top with gravel and backfilled with the excess soil.

Water collects at the bottom of the channel and moves upward into the drain. As water moves through the french drains, it eliminates standing water. The installation of french drains removes water from your home’s foundation and basement of your home without the need for a sump pump.

French Drain Installation

Benefits of Installing French Drains

A french drain offers many benefits to your property. This new drainage system will maintain the stability of your house and landscape.

Mold & Mildew Prevention

When you eliminate soggy areas or excess moisture from your property, it helps create a healthier environment and alleviate strong odors. We highly recommend a french drain system for properties with high humidity or heavy rainfall.

Long-Lasting Solution

After a professional drain installation, you will experience years of dry lawns that withstand weather conditions to protect the ground from water damage and drainage problems.

Basement Waterproofing

Those who have a lower level on their property understand how difficult it is to keep entryway doors in the basement from allowing water to seep through the cracks. However, french drains provide an extra layer of defense against water buildup. A sump pump is another common fix for managing a drainage problem.

Types of French Drains

There are different types of french drains, each with specific materials and components used in their construction.

The most suitable pipe for a french drain is an 8-12 inch PVC or corrugated pipe that has a smooth but perforated surface. These downspouts are designed to manage groundwater runoff, or water that does not pool on the ground or surface. Instead, the water seeps through the ground directly, keeping your system working properly.

There are other types of french drains that are installed on the home's foundation, interior and exterior perimeter known as trench drains.

french drain installation
A proper french drain system follows specific protocols to get water to flow through the yard.

Professional French Drain Installation Services in Athens, GA

Most installers think that the holes are to be placed facing the sky. This faulty installation can cost a homeowner thousands in repair damages.

As a local french drain installation service, Drain + Tree offers professional installation and maintenance for residential and commercial properties. With our expertise, we will assess your property's specific drainage requirements and create a plan to combat water damage and flooding efficiently.

How to Choose the Right Installer

Selecting the right installer for your french drain project is crucial to its success. One essential aspect to consider is the contractor's expertise in lawn grading. Consulting with lawn grading experts can ensure that your lawn is graded accurately and safely, which is vital for proper drainage and preventing damage to your landscaping. Drain + Tree can get the job done for both, grading lawns or driveways and installing drainage systems without requiring a third party contractor.

Attempting to re-grade your lawn and landscaping independently can lead to serious damage, such as root damage to plants, grass and trees on your property. So choose wisely and invest in a landscaping professional who can deliver the best results.

Why Choose Us?

By hiring Drain + Tree to fix your drainage problem, you gain access to advanced equipment and technology that guarantee a precise and timely drainage installation. A professionally installed french drain system not only protects your home and property from water damage, but also increases its property value.

Faulty French Drain
An improperly installed french drain.

French Drain Installation Process

Contrary to popular belief, a French Drain is not the drainage system made possible by the French. The drainage method is not from anyone in France. Rather, the origin of French drains comes from the book Farm Drainage: The Principles, Processes, and Effects of Draining Land, written by Massachusetts farmer, Henry French.

The french drain installation process is a multi-step procedure that starts with site assessment and planning, followed by excavation and pipe installation. Finally, backfilling and restoration will finish the job for a successful french drain installation. The drainage system ensures that water is efficiently diverted away from your home or business, preventing damage to the foundation and basement walls.

Materials and Components

In a french drain flood and system, water is directed into a trench filled with gravel and then into a perforated pipe placed at the bottom of the trench. Some french drain systems use perforated heavy-duty pipes and collect runoff in a basin.

Clean gravel is utilized to facilitate the absorption of rainwater runoff and pooling water, as well as eliminating soggy and wet areas. A catch basin will filter out any leaves, grass or debris from entering the drainage system, ensuring it is working properly.

Site Assessment and Planning

During site assessment for the french drain installation, it is essential to consider various landscape factors, such as slope shape, slope gradient, slope length, stream drainage characteristics, depth to the water table, and hydraulic performance of the drain. The slope is the terrain form where the drain will be installed must be level, inclined or curved.

A larger slope gradient indicates it is a steeper slope, and a longer slope will increase the amount of material and labor for the installation. Stream drainage characteristics and depth to the water table can influence the efficacy of the drain. The hydraulic performance of the drain is determined by the size, shape and the material used in the drain.

Excavation and Pipe Installation

Once the site assessment and planning phase is complete, excavation and pipe installation can begin. The recommended dimensions for a french drain trench is approximately 6 inches wide and 18 to 24 inches deep, with a slight downhill slope. Landscaping fabric should be used to line the walls of the trench to prevent soil from mixing with the gravel. Then, the perforated pipe will be placed at the bottom of the trench. Surrounding the drain pipe with gravel helps filter out silt and prevent clogging.

Backfilling and Restoration

The purpose of backfilling for French drain installation is to cover the pipe with at least 12 inches of washed gravel and lay filter fabric over it to prevent soil from obstructing the flow of the pipe. Grading the yard ensures the optimal functioning of the drainage system by directing water away from the house.

Once the pipe is covered with gravel and filter fabric, topsoil backfill is used to fill and return the foundation to its original grade height. This is the final step in the french drain installation process.

Done Right The First Time

At Drain + Tree, we take a careful, customizable approach to optimizing your yard space by redirecting excess water that can damage your home’s foundation. We are the local experts that take pride in transforming our community’s outdoor living spaces. If you seek drainage for your property, then a risk-free consultation is your best bet to get the designed system you deserve.

If you need help with getting a dry yard on your property call us for a free estimate today.
French Drain Installation Done Right

Common French Drain Issues and Solutions

Despite their effectiveness, french drains can be subject to a variety of issues, such as clogging due to silt, debris, tree roots or poor-quality pipes and an improper slope. Addressing these issues is essential to prevent flooding, foundation damage and mold from the water buildup.

Solutions for these common french drain problems include regular inspections, cleaning and flushing of the pipes.

To unclog french drain pipes, methods such as using a drain snake, chemical cleaners and hydro jetting can be employed. Preventive measures include inspecting the pipes frequently, cleaning them on a regular basis and avoiding planting trees or shrubs in close proximity to the pipes.

An improper french drain slope can lead to clogging due to a buildup of dirt, sediment or silt in its pipes. This will cause water to pool in the drain instead of flowing out. The recommended slope for a French drain is at least 1 percent, enabling the force of gravity and flow to be effective. To address an improper french drain slope, excavation of the area is necessary.

French Drain Maintenance and Repair

Regular maintenance and repair of your french drain system is essential to guarantee its efficient operation and avoid expensive repairs. Inspecting and cleaning your french drain on a yearly basis using an electric snake can help prevent blockages and ensure its proper functioning.

Regular Inspections

Regular inspections of french drains can prevent flooding, diminish the possibility of enduring water damage to a property and guarantee that the drain remains effective in diverting water away from the building's foundation. The process for inspecting a french drain includes examining the pipes for any indications of damage or obstructions, confirming that the drain is suitably sloped and assessing the adjacent soil for any signs of erosion or water accumulation.

It is recommended that french drains be inspected and cleaned at least once annually.

Cleaning and Flushing

Cleaning a french drain takes professional equipment and knowledge of how the drainage system operates on its own. To effectively clean and flush a french drain, it is recommended to use a pressure washer or electric sewer snake at least once a year. However, a homeowner can use a garden hose to flush the drain and remove any debris that has accumulated.

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French Drain Installation Costs

The cost of french drain installation varies depending on factors such as size, materials and labor. Homeowners can anticipate paying between $10 and $50 per foot to install an exterior french drain on their property.

To understand your project cost, call us for a free estimate before the installation process begins.

Factors Affecting Cost

Several factors influence the cost of French drain installation, including the extent of the area to be drained, the type of soil present and the size of the drain required for the project. Taking these factors into account can help you better understand and plan for the expenses associated with a drain installation.

Looking for a risk-free quote?

We offer free estimates and a fair price for your job well done.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it worth putting a french drain in?

Considering the potential benefits of installing a french drain, such as better water management and protection of buildings from floods, it is worth considering investing in one if your property meets the necessary drainage requirements.

What is the difference between a trench drain and a french drain?

When it comes to drainage, there is a clear difference between a french drain and a trench drain. A french drain is installed beneath the soil surface to move away underground water from the nearby buildings. Meanwhile, a trench drain is used to remove standing water from a specific area on the surface level.

Ultimately, both are effective solutions for managing drainage issues.

What is the average labor cost to install a French drain?

On average, homeowners can expect to pay between $1,000 and $18,000 for a French drain installation, with costs varying depending on the size, type and location of the drain.