Do French Drains Really Work?

Updated July 10, 2019

Do French Drains Really Work?

Do you have to frequently address a damp area in your yard? Or do you have a problem with water in your basement? Having the right kind of drainage system for your home or property is important because it can save you from a lot of problems in the long run. This can prevent water buildup on basements and garages. A good drainage system is also important in preventing possible damages in your home’s foundation as well. Having an ineffective drainage system can lead to the buildup of water underneath your home, which can damage the overall foundation of it. Because of this, you will have to spend on repairing your foundation, which can cost a large amount of money. When it comes to tackling drainage issues, French drains are often the suggested solution. But do they really work?

The French Drain

While designs may vary, French drains usually feature a trench. In the trench, a perforated pipe is put in and covered with gravel. French drains can be built inside or outside your home. However, this type of drain is usually found outside. If you want to be able to drain groundwater, then the French drain is perfect for the job. This will also work if your soil or yard usually ends up with standing water after a rain.

The Limitations

French drains are effective,but if you are planning or redirecting or moving huge amounts of water, then it wont work as successfully. They canremove moisture from over-saturated soil, but the soil should be sloped considerably in order for the water to drain into the basin. French drains also won’t be able to move water as quickly, and might even get overwhelmed with severe rainfall. French drains are also prone to being clogged, due to the fact that they are placed underground, and may need to be replaced often.

A Smart Investment

If your drainage problems involved water in your basement or standing water in your yard, then installing a French drain is a smart investment for your home. Leaving these problems unaddressed will only cause more damage, which can post a huge threat for you, your family, and your home. Having a French drain will also increase the value of your home as well.

Tips for French Drain Installation

  • If you are unsure about what to do, you can probably consult a surveyor before installing a French drain. If you really think you won’t be able to do it yourself, you can choose to hire a professional. This is crucial in making sure that they French drain will be able to work properly. The installation should be done properly so that you won’t have to face the same problem after just a short amount of time.
  • If you need help with digging, you can also ask the services of a backhoe operator. If that is too expensive, you can rent a trencher machine.
  • Smaller trenches will save you money, so make sure that you evaluate the size needed and install only the required amount.