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Learn how to build a French drain for your yard to protect against flooding your home's foundation.
Tags:french drain,building a french drain
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Well, today we are doing a French Drain and the reason we are doing it is if you just see over here to the right, this land slopes in and comes in and it comes right down towards the house. It keeps down right towards the foundation and that is the last thing you wanted—coming towards the foundation.
So what we are doing here is we are using a shovel, an axe, and I use a post-hole digger and we dig the hole down here. And the hole should be at least probably 14 to 15 inches deep. And it should be about 12 inches wide, but there are certain areas that you are not going to be able to get like that and you should run it all the entire distance of the link of the house. I do not think it ever going to fill up, not down here by the Mississippi river or Chattahoochee here in Atlanta where there is—so I do not think we had too much to worry about.
When I see a bucket sitting there, and what the bucket is used for, is I want to determine how well the water is flowing through, when it was raining like real hard, hard rain for two or three days or whatever—we got to make sure it continues to flow, totally down, all the way the distance for about 40 feet which is about the amount of distance it is.
When I did not see the waters flowed, and it really did not quite flowed right even from the beginning, we got a puddle right here and we need to take that off. Probably, the best way to take care of that is to add some gravel in. But before you put the gravel in, I will put a cloth and then put the gravel on top of it. Layer it out real nicely, so, it flows down that hill there and usually you can see it, it did flow quite well down the hill. And we go all the way down there, all the way down there, and there is the muddy water so we got a blockage up there. We can go and take a look and see what that blockage is.
All right, this is what I would call our little grand canyon here in Atlanta and we had that, literally not complete wall of rock, you can see that rock along there. Then you can see—it comes down there, it comes all the way down there, comes down there. We are going to head upon it, the wall. Now, I want to take that wall, I might do it probably all the way to the end to make sure that it is all even and have a continual-balanced slope. The size should be about one degree for every hundred feet. So, let us see what happens.
But believe, I have got a beginners luck! Honestly, I have never built one of these things before. I kind of follow some information on the internet and the thing that my friend printed it out for me that I am doing this French Drain. But, as you see, when I put that gravel in, it stops that puddle in and now I have got a perfect slope and that water just flows right on straight down. You see how I got the cloth I have got it laying up against the side, now, that is the side that is closest to the house, you see the cloth lying there.
Now, the cloth is over here. It is closest to the street. That will be folding over the gravel when I make my gravel tunnel. And that is what I will all be doing next. You will see the gravel in the tunnel.
But we have got the beginners luck. Do you see the wet gravel there? Then, as you see—a little bit further, it is not wet. But what you do see is wet, down that way in—that is where we want it; it is going right on down into the little canyon.
But all again, beginners luck. As you can see, I put a piece of cloth there again, another piece of cloth. And we will be making another tunnel. What I wanted to make sure is see that the water right here is gone through, I poured water and it ran right straight down the tunnel and right in to that mud.
Well, we finally have gotten all 45 feet of this French Drain done. I am walking along it now to show you, and it goes all the way around like this to show you that you need that if you are doing it, as we said for this situation, where the water is draining down into this area now rather than it was draining into the house foundation, you need to be very careful.
You will also need to be very careful about, you see this flags here?