How to Install Drainage to Remove Standing Water Around a Landscape

It’s that time of year in Oregon where standing water in and around your landscape can become an issue and you need better yard drainage. One example is a neighbor’s property is standing at a higher elevation than yours therefore allowing run off onto your property. A french drain is an affordable solution to this problem.

A french drain is a trench in which a pipe is laid to redirect water away from your yard. Standing water can rot the roots of your trees and vegetation as well as make it very hard for your grass to survive.

How to install a French drain:

  1. Determine where your biggest water issue is and where it’s entering.
  2. Check all utilities and underground cables so you know where not to excavate.
  3. Choose where your French drain will be located based on the first two steps. Commonly they are placed along fence lines or next to your home if water is threatening your foundation. Keep in mind that you don’t want to compromise anyone else’s property when redirecting the water. If possible connect your French drain into an existing rain gutter drain that will take the water to the street storm system.
  4. You’ll want your trench to be at a small slope, 1% is recommended. Figure the depth needed for length of trench along with width. The width will be determined based on the size of pipe you’ll be using. Smaller problems usually us a pipe 5”-6” wide.
  5. Digging is the most labor intensive portion of a French drain. This portion of the process can be outsourced to an excavator.
  6. Line the bottom of your trench with gravel. Lay your perforated pipe in trench. It that may be wrapped in landscape fabric to keep particles, soil, and gravel out. Cover pipe with gravel.
  7. If your pipe is not covered with landscape fabric you can line the trench and cover your pipe with the fabric before covering with gravel and sand.
  8. To complete you can add another layer of landscape fabric over your gravel then follow with sand before laying soil, sod or bark dust depending on the location of your French drain.

If you need assistance establishing your drain location or any other portion of the process please call us.