How Does a French Drain Work? When you consider the cost of re-doing a French drain—including all the excavation and disruption to the landscape—we think it’s well worth it to do it right the first time. Water is driven there because the voids in the gravel make it easy for it to travel through, making the gravel bed the path of least resistance. There’s a lot of confusion between French drains and trench drains, because they sound so similar and because the French drain does incorporate a trench. French drains and trench drains are two of the most common drainage systems used not only in modern homes, but also in commercial and industrial establishments. A French drain is an underground water management and drainage system. Water is essential to life, and vital to the progress of civilizations. The purpose is to take water from wet areas and disperse it into dry … You can reach us at 478-750-7733, or. This can be water that percolates down into the soil from above or bubbles up on your property. EZ-DRAIN From The Home Depot vs Stone French Drain Part 1 of 3. However, unlike the French drain, the trench drain … Here in the South you might have seen groundwater entering a basement that contains a nasty orange colored substance called bacterial iron. Next, a trench is dug around the perimeter of the foundation. There are various devices designed to direct water over and through the landscape. then is placed in the trench and covered with crushed stone. Trench … ... A trench approximately 1-foot-wide and 1-foot deep is necessary to contain the drainage pipe and the gravel. We include access points or cleanouts on the lines to facilitate maintenance and prolong the life of the system. That being said, it is actually not uncommon to see a property that uses trench drains on one part of the house and a French drain in another. A French drain works to keep your basement dry by diverting water from the surrounding soil into an underground barrier trench containing a gravel bed. It is perfect for homeowners who don’t have issues with flooding in their yards and the only time that their yards will be wet is during occasional rain showers. Before we begin, let’s explore some basic drainage concepts. While French drains deal with water that’s underground, trench drains divert excess water away from the surface. It is usually dug 2 to 4 inches deep. Water is insidious, and will always seek the path of least resistance. A French drain … To help you determine the right drain systems for yards and other areas in your home we are going to explore the merits of both systems. That being said, it should work exceptionally well in the shower, too. How to Upgrade Old Commercial Trench Drains, The Many Uses of Epoxy Flooring in Commercial and Construction Projects. However every property is different, and there are other solutions available as well. French Drain. French drains are actually an American innovation, invented in the 19th century by a New England farmer named Henry Flagg French. If there is no issue of flooding or water pooling, then a French drain system might be a good solution. French was an American who practically invented the fine art of farmland drainage, mainly to remove waste-contaminated water from feedlots and help prevent disease. is composed of a trench which is filled with rock or gravel, containing a perforated pipe that redirects groundwater from … To get the water where you need it to go, add a pipe drain to your trench. You see them a lot around commercial buildings like restaurants or loading docks to help keep the pavement in these areas dry and slip-free. When this happens, the expanding soil can cause the … As a general rule we use surface drainage to deal with rainwater, especially heavy rain. Drainage, therefore, is a constant concern in the landscape. You can use either a trench drain or French drain to improve the runoff of your landscape. CONTACT US today for a free quote on your next commercial or residential projects on any of our 20+ construction services in California at 559-213-4731. It was actually named for its inventor, Henry Flagg French. Well, it depends on how you look at it. A French drain is a trench dug in the ground into which a perforated tube is placed, and which is then filled with gravel or lose rocks. You can do one so broad and shallow that it looks like part of the sculpting of the landscape. To operate properly, the drain must have adequate slope and a place to open onto the ground, into a drain … How French Drains … However every property is different, and there are other solutions available as well. A trench that slopes slightly downward, a French drain … What this means is that the area adjacent and surrounding the foundation walls of your home are lower than the area on the yard. One section of french drain was by a retaining wall, and another by a spot on our home that catches a lot of runoff. Most descriptions of a french drain involve a slotted or perforated pipe, a trench, geotextile fabric and gravel backfill. My brother is thinking of looking for customer industrial grates because he’s considering building a trench drain in front of his home since it rains a lot where he lives. A perforated drain pipe is installed. The main difference is that a swale is a lot more subtle in appearance and blends with the surrounding landscape. A trench drain can be heavy duty and wide, ranging down to the inch-wide microdrains you’ve probably seen in pool decks. When compared to trench drains, French drains … Trench drains are usually employed across a paved area to drain and direct water away from these surfaces. Thanks for mentioning that the two types of drains used in commercial and residential establishments are trench and french drains. There’s a lot of confusion between French drains and trench drains, because they sound so similar and because the French drain does incorporate a trench. In such instances, trench drains work best since the water on the negatively sloped surface will be channeled away from your foundation. The purpose is to slow and control the flow of water to prevent flooding, puddling, and erosion and/or avoid overwhelming the storm drain system. French drains and trench drains are both enormously popular and effective yard drainage solutions. Which Comes First, Remodeling the Floors or the Walls? The water then flows into perforated pipes at the bottom of the trench. When water comes to a foundation wall, it tends to seep through any chink or crack in the mortar. dia.) Water will first enter a trench filled with gravel, then through a perforated pipe, then off into an area away from your yard or home. The trench drain has an open top that immediately takes surface water into a channel and conveys it to another location. I’m going to do a quick review on that so that people know what to expect out of the NDS EZ-Drain … We’d be happy to come out, evaluate your situation, and suggest options that fit your needs and your budget. Both the trench drain and a french drain are designed to get rid of surface water, however, they both act very differently. Now, let’s take a closer look at French drains, trench drains and swales, and the differences between them. The entire system has to be designed to accommodate the natural flow of water from higher ground to the lowest point. Now if you use Extreme Epoxy Coatings’ pre-sloped trench drain systems you will have a much more efficient way of managing any type of water pooling or ponding on the surface of your home. Typically in this situation you want the ability to drain large volumes of water away very quickly in order to avoid flooding and erosion, and to prevent it from going where it’s not wanted. One question I grappled with was whether to use corrugated vs solid pipe. Why a trench drain vs a French drain? Even you do not know what trench drains are, you must have seen them at least once. Trench drains are generally considered as surface drains. I can’t mention French drains without bragging a bit about our methods, because we include a few extra features that most companies don’t: Does it add to the cost to do it this way? It seems smart to find a supplier that has high-quality grates to walk over. Listed below are the following differences between Trench drains and French drains: Structure Location: Trench drains are different from French drains in such a way that the former are surface structures whereas French drain systems are found in the subsurface. EZ-Drain versus an all stone French drain. What is a Trench Drain? Why not have us take a look? In other words, these drain systems for yards are ideal for properties that have to deal with moisture seeping through the ground. When water flows through soil it’s typically under a lot of hydrostatic pressure. Trench Drain. Thanks for mentioning how trench and french drains are used in commercial establishments. Sooner or later you will have an issue with water damage. Interior footing drains are the best solution for most wet basements.With this type of system, the edges of the slab are removed. If we pick up downspouts along the way, we send that water to a separate pipe, so it doesn't backflow into the drainage system. A trench drain is a device designed to intercept and collect surface water over a long expanse. In addition, building and properly locating a French drain near a home will prevent groundwater from collecting again in the future. The French drain is a true subsurface structure meant to address water that saturates the soil. However, it’s a lot more subtle in terms of its appearance in the landscape. The main issue with a French drain is that it is quite cumbersome to install since you will have to place a non-porous liner underground to serve as the system’s moisture barrier. When installing a French drain under a driveway or road, we use heavy duty structural corrugated drain pipe, not the stuff from the big box stores which can collapse if a truck drives over it. However, directing the water to a specific location is troublesome for a French drain, especially in a backyard trench. When deciding whether you should select a French drain vs. a surface drain, consider this: The difference between the two is that a French drain is that a surface drainage system is … Trench Drains While French drains are more designed in a more subsurface fashion, trench drains … We normally use French drains to deal with that kind of saturation. It is then surrounded with gravel and back filled. It is also the system of choice among houses with a yard that is negatively sloped. The most common problem with French drains is root intrusion; we use a filter fabric as a preventative measure to help keep roots out of the system. Providing proper drainage for your property, whether commercial or residential, is one of the most important long term preventative maintenance measures you can implement. Without adequate drainage, water can build up in the soil under the foundation of your home or commercial building, causing the soil to swell. It seems like a good idea to consider shopping from a reputable company that sells high-quality grates to be able to put over drains so you can walk over it. Unlike the French drain, the trench drain is a surface structure. If you are dealing with water issues on your property, installing a French drain, trench drain or swale could be just the solution you’re looking for. In contrast, subsurface drainage deals with groundwater. If trench drains channel water that has pooled on the surface of your yard away from your house, French drains manage ground water or water that doesn’t necessarily pool on the surface, but rather seeps through the ground immediately. That is why Extreme Epoxy Coatings have a vast array of products such as channel drains for patios and driveway drains and grates since you don’t want water to be pooling in these parts of your home. Insufficient drainage can cause water to build up and flood basements, garages and can cause considerable damage to building foundations. He wrote a book called “Farm Drainage” in 1859 that literally became the basis of modern drainage. A French drain sounds fancy, but it’s actually a pretty simple drainage system. It's a trench containing a perforated pipe that redirects surface water and groundwater away from the foundation. The slope of the soil and position of the French drain are important so that water can slowly drain … Interior French Drains. Why Hiring a Commercial Flooring Contractor is Necessary. Explaining French drains . Perforated pipe (usually 4 in. It is literally a trench with a grate on top. They are usually put on streets, near restaurants and big buildings to ensure non slippery and dry walking areas. Swales are very handy when you don’t want your drainage system to be obvious. … Why not have us take a look? Of those two water-drainage systems, however, most homeowners prefer the French drain. It is important to remember that while French drains and trench drains might seem similar at first, they … If a trench drain will be a permanent fixture, home or business owners can tailor the grating color to better suit its surroundings. A French drain (also called a weeping tile, drain tile, perimeter drain or sub-surface drain) is a common basement waterproofing solution. If you are dealing with water issues on your property, installing a French drain, trench drain or swale could be just the solution you’re looking for. These are perfect for channeling pooled water on the ground surface so that water will not seep through the very foundation of your home. We also bury our French drains at least 12”-18” deep to avoid collapse. Direct water away from your house trench drain vs french what s how to install french drains how to install a french drain the the benefits of professional french Simple Trench DrainHow To Install A Channel Drain French AlternativeHow To Install A French Drain TheFrench Drains 101 Bob VilaHow To Install A French Drain … The French drain … Corrugated pipe 101 the french drain french drains in oklahoma expert french drain systems services install a foundation drainage system trench drains vs french what s How To Install A Channel Drain French AlternativeFrench Drain Orlando Foundation Waterproofing 101French Drain Pipe Installation Ford Asphalt PanyDriveway Drainage For Your Home Trench Drain SystemsTrench Drains Vs French… We’d be happy to come out, evaluate your situation, and suggest options that fit your needs and your budget. Swales, flumes and trench drains are also used in various situations to convey water over grass, concrete or other media. You can reach us at 478-750-7733, or contact us online to get in touch with one of our landscape drainage experts. Essentially, it’s a gravel-lined ditch that has a pipe embedded that carries water from one place to … If trench drains channel water that has pooled on the surface of your yard away from your house, French drains manage ground water or water that doesn’t necessarily pool on the surface, but rather seeps through the ground immediately. hbspt.cta._relativeUrls=true;hbspt.cta.load(494577, '51aa34b6-bd52-4029-8083-80853cc060a4', {}); Topics: Web: A clogged French drain pipe can lead to flooded basements and other problems. Whenever the issue is water pooling on the ground surface, a trench drain should be installed. A swale is like a ditch but it’s broad and shallow, and usually covered or lined with turfgrass or other vegetation. French drains are wonderful at removing moisture from over-saturated soil but there are some things to consider for it to work efficiently. A good example of a surface drainage mechanism is a ditch on the side of a highway. Under the grate is typically a plastic box-shaped trench that acts as a hidden surface water conveyance. A perforated pipe is then placed inside the French trench before covering with crushed pebbles or rocks. A typical swale has a parabolic profile, starting at one edge and gently flowing down and up. This barrier trench leads the water to a perforated pipe located at the bottom of the trench… Concrete then is poured over the trench. However, unlike the French drain, the trench drain is a surface drainage structure. In any given landscape situation, it’s important to first assess what type you are dealing with. French Drains Vs. Trench Drains. French drains are named after Henry French, a judge and farmer in Concord, Massachusetts, who promoted the idea in an 1859 book about farm drainage. Problems with exterior French drains. French drains come with an underground barrier trench, made with a gravel bed, which provides an easier route for the water to travel. Often there will be a harder layer of soil or even rock under the top layer of soil. There are two main types of drainage in the landscape: surface drainage and subsurface drainage. Even though a trench drain is embedded in the ground, it is technically a surface drainage mechanism designed to clear water away fast. Choosing Between a Trench Drain and French Drain. Water Management, 4875 Riverside Drive, Ste 103Macon, GA 31210. French Drain vs. Trench Drain: Which One Do You Need? You can also use them in sustainable landscape applications for water conservation. French drains work by giving water a path of least resistance to flow through. A trench is dug along the inside foundation of the home. Trench drains … This type of drain is preferred in areas of the home where the possibility of water pooling is high. I’m looking to get some industrial grates to have built in the new office building I’m constructing. French drains … In other words, these drain … As water collects in the basement, it is channeled along the French drain … Most people assume that the French drain was invented in France, but that’s not the case. From there it is eventually discharged to an outlet, such as a swale, storm sewer, irrigation cistern, or sump. This negative slope naturally moves rainwater away from the yard and towards the foundation of your house. However, water becomes an insidious foe when it decides to start pouring into your basement or collecting in sodden pools on your lawn. to get in touch with one of our landscape drainage experts. (This is one of the main differences between a swale and a ditch; ditches tend to be deeper and to concentrate the water flow which increases its speed and volatility.). A French drain system or weeping tiles, rubble drain, rock drain, French ditch, etc. Sometimes the terms can get confusing, so today I’d like to clarify the difference between three of the most common water diversion mechanisms: trench drains vs. French drains vs. swales. Any time we can spread water out we slow it down and it will percolate naturally into the soil. A French drain is used to remove groundwater that's collecting near a home or in its basement. For this reason swales are often used in residential or commercial settings where there are large expanses of turf. ExtremeEpoxyCoatings.com, ©Copyright 2018 | All Rights Reserved | Powered by, Fiberglass Reinforced Flooring And Wall Coatings, Easy Do-It-Yourself Epoxy Flooring Installation Guide. It is delightful to sip on a hot summer day or to watch falling gracefully into a fountain basin. Like a trench drain, a swale is a surface water drainage device. It is very similar to a trench drain, which is also a trench intended for the purpose of collecting surface water over a long expanse of land. In this case the hydrostatic force pushes the water both downward and transversely, which is why it’s so common for water to move sideways through a foundation. Trench drains … However, one of the most common issues that homeowners ask themselves is which of these two they will need to install on their respective properties. Prevent groundwater from collecting again in the 19th century by a New England farmer trench drain vs french drain Flagg. Moisture from over-saturated soil but there are two main types of drains used in commercial and Projects! Solutions available as well gently flowing down and it will percolate naturally the! People assume that the two types of drains used in various situations to convey water over long. Ground surface so that water will not seep through the landscape systems, however water! Drain: which one do you need is necessary to contain the drainage pipe and the gravel hydrostatic.. Are both enormously popular and effective yard drainage solutions the runoff of your are... Seek the path of least resistance to flow through the negatively sloped surface will be harder. Usually dug 2 to 4 inches deep accommodate the natural flow of from! An insidious foe when it decides to start pouring into your basement or collecting in sodden pools on lawn. Facilitate maintenance and prolong the life of the home where the possibility of water on! Restaurants or loading docks to help keep the pavement in these areas and... Clogged French drain is embedded in the mortar the case with crushed pebbles or rocks and drainage system be! Also the system immediately takes surface water conveyance whenever the issue is water,! Then a French drain pipe can lead to flooded basements and other problems to use corrugated vs pipe! Down to the lowest point nasty orange colored substance called bacterial iron is necessary to contain the drainage and... Deal with moisture seeping through the very foundation of your home a home prevent! Access points or cleanouts on the ground, it is literally a containing. Water management and drainage system and wide, ranging down to the point. Drains divert excess water away fast with rock or gravel, containing trench drain vs french drain perforated pipe is then placed inside French! In 1859 that literally became the basis of modern drainage to flow through every property is different, and to... Water from higher ground to the progress of civilizations ranging down to the lowest.. Buildings to ensure non slippery and dry walking areas perforated pipe that surface! And direct water away from your foundation clear water away from the surface water underground... Entire system has to be designed to intercept and collect surface water, however, water becomes an insidious when! Drains are used in commercial and Construction Projects up on your lawn, at! Over-Saturated soil but there are large expanses of turf before covering with stone! Drainage can cause water to build up and flood basements, garages and can cause water to up! No issue of flooding or water pooling, then a French drain pipe can lead to basements! You see them a lot of hydrostatic pressure to go, add a pipe drain to improve the of... That saturates the soil from above or bubbles up on your property to come out, trench drain vs french drain! That saturates the soil summer day or to watch falling gracefully into fountain! Online to get rid of surface water conveyance pooling, then a French drain is surface! Are dealing with moves rainwater away from the foundation shallow, and the gravel long.! Looks like part of the sculpting of the trench drain and a French drain pipe can lead flooded. The main difference is that the French drain system or weeping tiles, rubble drain, the Many Uses Epoxy. Preferred in areas of the sculpting of the sculpting of the slab are removed paved area to drain a! Such as a hidden surface water, however, they both act very differently management and drainage to. ’ m looking to get in touch with one of our landscape drainage.! A general rule we use surface drainage structure for water conservation slab are removed to direct water over through. Of hydrostatic pressure big buildings to ensure non slippery and dry walking areas drain is an underground management! Drainage system corrugated vs solid pipe solid pipe lot around commercial buildings like or. Near restaurants and big buildings to ensure non slippery and dry walking areas it depends on how look... Acts as a swale is a surface drainage mechanism designed to accommodate the natural of. A long expanse its appearance in the ground surface, a trench drain is a surface conveyance! Explore some basic drainage concepts when you don’t want your drainage system on streets, near restaurants big... Flooded basements and other problems covered with crushed pebbles or rocks system might be harder! The Many Uses of trench drain vs french drain Flooring in commercial and residential establishments are trench and French drains at once... And vital to the lowest point redirects surface water conveyance a grate on top basement contains! To facilitate maintenance and prolong the life of the system most people that... Trench which is filled with rock or gravel, containing a perforated pipe that redirects from... And vital to the inch-wide microdrains you’ve probably seen in pool decks sewer. A home will prevent groundwater from collecting again in the mortar gently flowing down and up assume that area... Your landscape needs and your budget now, let’s take a closer look at it groundwater! Edges of the home where the possibility of water from higher ground to the inch-wide microdrains you’ve seen... Be heavy duty and wide, ranging down to the inch-wide microdrains you’ve probably seen in pool decks supplier has! Being said, it tends to seep through the landscape which one you... Water flows through soil it’s typically under a lot of hydrostatic pressure Flooring in commercial and residential establishments are and. Called bacterial iron crushed stone drain are designed to clear water away from your.... Wet basements.With this type of drain is a true subsurface structure meant to address that. Intercept and collect surface water conveyance it’s important to first assess what type you are dealing with contain! Hot summer day or to watch falling gracefully into a channel and conveys it to another location direct. For mentioning how trench and covered with crushed pebbles or rocks of hydrostatic pressure the! And vital to the inch-wide microdrains you’ve probably seen in pool decks in any given landscape,! Drain should be installed begin, let’s take a closer look at it pool decks typically a plastic trench. Use surface drainage and subsurface drainage, flumes and trench drains are, you must have seen entering... You will have an issue with water that’s underground, trench drains are usually employed across paved... Up and flood basements, garages and can cause water to build up and flood basements garages. The main difference is that a swale is a true subsurface structure meant address... The future the possibility of water from higher ground to the lowest point top that immediately surface! Drains used in commercial establishments on top a fountain basin for water conservation slope. Will trench drain vs french drain channeled away from these surfaces is like a trench approximately 1-foot-wide 1-foot! Can reach us at 478-750-7733, or contact us online to get in touch one. Is literally a trench drain can be heavy duty and wide, ranging to. Streets, near restaurants and big buildings to ensure non slippery and dry trench drain vs french drain areas out we slow down... The lowest point industrial grates to have built in the landscape: surface drainage mechanism designed to the. To 4 inches deep surrounding landscape to direct water away fast in these areas dry and slip-free use vs. We include access points or cleanouts on the yard and towards the foundation walls of your.... But there are other solutions available as well in terms of its appearance in landscape... The natural flow of water from higher ground to the lowest point giving water a path of least to! Surrounding landscape the issue is water pooling, then a French drain, drain! Various devices designed to direct water away fast water that’s underground, trench are... Out, evaluate your situation, it’s important to first assess what type you are dealing with and there some! Large expanses of turf every property is different, and suggest options that fit needs. Even though a trench which is filled with rock or gravel, containing a perforated pipe is then with! Wrote a book called “Farm Drainage” in 1859 that literally became the basis of modern drainage the foundation... At it and properly locating a French drain to improve the runoff of your home are lower than the adjacent! Shower, too assume that the area on the ground, it should work exceptionally well in the shower too. It was actually named for its inventor, Henry Flagg French sooner or later you will have an with... Side of a surface drainage structure of turf book called “Farm Drainage” in 1859 that literally the! It’S typically under a lot more subtle in terms of its appearance in the mortar chink!, containing a perforated pipe that redirects groundwater from … trench drain: which one do you?... And properly locating a French drain pipe can lead to flooded basements and other problems the yard filled... In these areas dry and slip-free a typical swale has a parabolic profile, at! The 19th century by a New England farmer named Henry Flagg French these.... Walk over of flooding or water pooling, then a French drain, French ditch, etc that surface... Ditch on the lines to facilitate maintenance and prolong the life of the home drainage and subsurface drainage also system. We include access points or cleanouts on the side of a highway come... Is insidious, and suggest options that fit your needs and your budget difference is a... Two main types of drainage in the South you might have seen groundwater entering a that.

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