What do you do when you have a house built lower than the grade around it? If there’s water left against the house, up against the foundation, whether it’s a basement or a crawl space, it’s only a matter of time before it becomes a problem. Water left to sit will end up finding its way into the structure. This will contribute a musty odor, as well as mold and mildew. A Curtain French drain can prevent issues before they start and protect your home. Here’s everything you need to know about how to build a Curtain French drain.
Example of Curtain French Drain Installation
Today we’re installing two systems in one trench — a Curtain French drain, with the 8-Slot High Octane and solid armor pipe for the roof runoff system. The downspouts will be tied in series. That will allow the water to flow, so there’s no way that shingle gravel, tree seeds, or leaves will be a problem. As you go downstream, the pipe becomes neater and cleaner.
We have cleanouts on all the downspouts. We taped up every connection in that solid pipe to keep the water pressure high. The pressure is what’s going to keep that pipe clean. Finally, we’ll Y these two systems together and take them to a single discharge line out front at a storm drain.
Increase Velocity by Installing on a Slope
Now that you’ve got an overview of the project, we’re going to explain everything you need to know about how to build a Curtain French drain. First, we want to emphasize the importance of the depth and slope of your trench.
You always want your system on a 1% slope to chase the water out. Otherwise, you’re just going to encourage water to run down the basement wall. For this installation, we started extremely shallow on one side of the house. We kept getting deeper and deeper as we worked our way around an addition that was put on this home years ago.
Remember, if your system is just off the basement wall, you’ll want to keep your trench shallow. If you need to dig a little deeper, your trench should be four feet off the house wall.
Build a Curtain French Drain That Lasts
We ran all the single downspouts to popups in the front and put an inline catch basin. That catch basin is a super low maintenance option for homeowners. It can be cleaned a couple of times a year with a Shop-Vac. This will prevent clogging, and it’ll keep your line flowing free. You want your drainage systems ready for those big thunderstorms and rain events.
Next, we installed an Open French drain. An Open French drain is when you just leave the stone exposed. We went ahead and burrito-wrapped the system and covered it with inch and a half round rock.
When you burrito-wrap a wide Curtain French drain as we have here, you will have to add a strip of fabric to the top. Just make sure you only have a couple of inches of overlap. This fabric has holes punched in it to improve its flow rating. If you overlap the material, the holes won’t line up, and you’re not going to get flow.
Here, you can see a finished Open French drain. Look how nice that looks. The men closed up the French drain. That Curtain French drain has been burrito wrapped. So, no debris can fill the voids of the drainage stone. This drain is going to last forever.
Helping You Build a Curtain French Drain and More
French Drain Man provides tips for DIYers, as well as professional installations for all your drainage needs. With over 35 years of experience, we’re the experts in drainage-related. From Curtain French drains, buried downspouts to outdoor sump pumps, we provide the best drainage solutions to homeowners.