French Drains: What You Need To Know - My Plumber Kelowna


By Dave Bangar

French Drains: What You Need to Know

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Why Kelowna Homeowners Should Consider Having a French Drain Installed

In rainy climates like the Okanagan, wet and muddy backyard yards, damp basements, and water damage are major concerns for many Kelowna homeowners.

Fortunately, a drainage system exists to help combat these issues. This system is known as a French Drain. 

In this article, we will explain what a French Drain is, how it works, why you might need one, and more. 

What is a French Drain?

A French Drain is a sloped trench that is dug in your yard. Inside the trench sits a perforated pipe buried underneath layers of gravel.

The drain should be installed in any problematic areas of your yard where water is most likely to accumulate and helps divert the water away from your property.

How a French Drain Works

Anytime there is lots of rain and snowmelt in Kelowna, low-lying properties often have water accumulate in the yard. If the property is not sloped downwards, the water can pool up, create a large, wet mud pit, and even travel downwards into the home, causing damage to the foundation and flooding in the basement. 

French Drains are an effective solution to this issue because they are sloped and utilize gravity to help pull water downwards and redirect it away from your home. 

When a French Drain is installed on your property, this water will fill the trench and flow downwards through the pipe. Depending on the location of the drain and how it was installed, the water will be emptied away from your house and diverted to:

  • A low-lying area 
  • A drainage ditch
  • A dry well
  • Your street

Why You Would Need a French Drain

If you are a Kelowna homeowner but aren’t sure whether your home needs a French Drain, we’ll explain the advantages of having this type of drainage system and the types of homes that would benefit. 

To help with this, we have listed some of the most common reasons you may need a French Drain on your property. 

You Have a Low-Lying Home

Homes that are located in low-lying areas and are not fortunate enough to be perched on a hill are unfortunately more susceptible to water accumulation and flooding. For this reason, most low-lying homes in Kelowna should have a French Drain on the property to help prevent water from travelling into the home. 

You Frequently Deal With Flooding and Other Water Issues

Many parts of Kelowna frequently experience flooding during the spring months when the snow melts and the rain becomes heavier.

If the basement of your Kelowna home frequently floods and you have already experienced water damage inside your home, a French Drain may be necessary to prevent further damage to your home and your foundation.

Your Landscaping is Being Ruined

While water is great for keeping your garden and soil healthy, too much water can cause your plants to die.
Excess amounts of water penetrating the soil can also cause problems with other landscaping features like retaining walls. Plus, it can be difficult to enjoy spending time outdoors when your yard is one big muddy puddle.

How a French Drain is Installed

The first step is to figure out where the drain needs to be placed. Once the ideal location is identified, the trench needs to be dug with a slope of at least one inch for every eight feet in the direction you want water to flow. This ensures the water is able to properly flow away from the house. 

Filter fabric is then placed in the trench before the gravel bedding is poured. After the gravel is in the trench, the pipe connections are hooked up.

The drainage pipe should be wrapped in a water-permeable fabric to ensure the water is able to enter the drainage pipe before being placed in the trench. Once placed, the pipe should be covered in gravel. The last step is to backfill the trench with topsoil.

Work With Kelowna’s Best Plumbers

Struggling to deal with excess water in your yard that has travelled to your basement? A French Drain may be the solution. Contact our team of Kelowna-based plumbers today to learn about your options.

At My Plumber Kelowna, we have a team of licensed, trained, and highly experienced plumbers who can help you install a French Drain and resolve any other plumbing issues you may be experiencing.

Call us today at 250-601-0000 or fill out a form on our website and we will be in touch ASAP.

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