Archive for the ‘Drainage System’ Category


Don’t despair! We provide Sprinkler Repair.

OK the rhyme is a little lame but it is no reflection on the quality of service or the level of expertise that we provide.

Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair has been providing Expert Sprinkler Repair since 1993.  During that time we have seen it all and done it all where residential Sprinkler Repair is concerned.

We service all of Central and Western Oklahoma.

1 SPRINKLER VALVE

Replacing Broken Sprinkler Valve in Norman.

If you need a Sprinkler Head moved, adjusted, repaired or replaced we can handle the job.

If you have any type of problem with your sprinkler valves we can provide the solution.

Sprinkler Controller trouble?  No Problem.  We service all brands and models.

 

Many times Sprinkler Wires get damaged or cut.  Sprinkler Wiring runs underground from the Sprinkler Valves to the Sprinkler Controller.  Many times the wires become damaged when digging is done in your yard.  Installing new phone lines for example causes cuts in Sprinkler Wire.

If the phone lines are installed during the winter when the Sprinkler System is not being used, you may not realize that you have a problem until the following spring.

Finding cut sprinkler wiring can be very difficult.  This is one area where there is no substitute for experience.

Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair has been finding Cut Sprinkler Wires and fixing them since 1993.

Installing in-line drains in a sprinkler system is a service that we also provide.  Many times a sprinkler system has no drains put in when the Sprinkler System is first installed.

We are happy to install them for you.

An in-line sprinkler drain automatically drains all the water out of the Sprinkler Pipes immediately after your sprinkler system runs.  This relieves stress on the pipes and joints and also prevents pipes from freezing and breaking because there is still water in your system from last summer.  SPRINKLER PIPES CAN’T FREEZE IF THERE IS NO WATER IN THEM.

 


When Determining what type of Drain you need for your Drainage System.  In our last blog, we talked about Surface Water and Sub-Surface water and why you need to understand them before designing your Drainage System.  If you need to review, click below.  If you have a question or comment please leave it at the bottom of the page. I will respond as quickly as I can.

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Before we get into Water Movement, we need to discuss Surface Drains.

Surface Drains come in many shapes and sizes.  The two most common are Basin Drains and Channel Drains.

A Basin Drain has a Square Grate and it sits on top of a catch basin.  It will have a single pipe connected to it or it will have a drain pipe running into it and a pipe running out of it.  We used this picture in a previous blog, but I want to show it to you again.

Surface Drain Connection

Surface Drain connected to a Transition Pipe

Below is a Basin before the pipe is connected to both sides.  The pipe is cut and connected to one side.   Another piece of Drain Pipe is connected to the other side.  The Drain pipe does not run straight through the basin.  Water must have a way to enter the Drain Pipe.  The Surface Drain in the picture is the most common size used in residential applications.  The Drain Pipe connecting to it is 4 inch ADS Solid Drain Pipe.

For a Surface Drain to work well it must be placed in a low lying area of standing water.  It is not intended to intercept moving water or to drain away Sub-Surface water.

 

In review, detecting Surface Water is straight forward.  You can observe how it flows into the Problem Drainage Area.

Sub-Surface water is not so easy.  You can’t see it move into the problem area.  So What do you do?

First take a look at your soil.  What type of soil do you have?

Soil with a lot of clay will have less Sub-Surface Water, Maybe none at all.  If you do have some it will move into the area slowly.  If you have sandy soil the underground water will move there in a hurry.  Most people will have something in between.

To be sure, a few simple tests can help.

Next check the problem drainage area when there is no water standing in it.  Is it soft and mushy when the surrounding area is more firm?  This is an indication that Sub-Surface Water is still flowing into the area.  Another way to collect information is to dig a small hole about a foot deep in the area. Check it every day for several days.  If water is standing in the hole, you have a Sub-Surface Water issue.  How fast it flows into the hole is also important.

OK, you have Sub-Surface water along with Surface Water in your problem drainage area.  Your Choice for the correct “Intake” for your Drainage System should be a French Drain.

OK, You have no Sub-Surface water. You only have Surface Water flowing into the problem area.  You need a French Drain If you are trying to intercept the water as it comes into the area.  Many times water will run around the surface drain and still flood the area.  Also the Surface Drain is much more easily overwhelmed and water will run past it that way too.  Again, this is very important,  If you are trying to intercept water before it gets to where its going, don’t use a Surface Drain.

A Surface Drain should be used in a Medium to Low Volume Water situation.  The water needs to be stationary or moving very slowly.  It should be placed in an area that is the lowest point in the Problem Drainage area.  They also work well in smaller confined areas such as pool decks, along sidewalks, or in flower beds.

More than one Surface Drain can be connected to one drain pipe in a “Daisy Chain” of Drains if you have several low spots in a larger area.

In many cases a small french drain can be installed in almost every place that a Surface Drain might be installed.  People opt for a Surface Drain over a French Drain because they like the way the Surface Drain looks more than the way the French Drain looks.  For some People, Looks are more important than functionality.

Channel drain in concrete

Channel drain in concrete

Setting a Surface Drain in Concrete such as a driveway or a Sidewalk is a good application for a Surface Drain.  Many times it is better to install a French Drain in your yard over a Surface Drain.  What ever makes you happy!

French Drains can be made to look very decorative.

decorative french drain

French Drains can be decorated with many types of stone

In conclusions,

French Drains are used for :  1.  Higher water volume situations  2.  Intercepting moving Surface Water  3.  Solving Sub-Surface water problems

Surface Drains are used for: 1.  Smaller water volume situations  2.  Standing Surface Water that has reached its destination   3.  Smaller and more confined areas  4.  Set in concrete such as sidewalks or Driveways

 

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French Drains and Surface Drains as part of Drainage Systems

This is a series of blogs that first explains exactly what French Drains and Surface Drains are,  and how they are used in a Drainage System.

Next, I will explain exactly what the benefits and drawbacks are of each type of drain and why you would use one type of drain over another in many different situations.

Last, I will explain the specifics of how to install your own Drainage System and how to diagnose exactly what type of system you need in the first place.

At the top and  bottom of every blog in this series will be a listing of all the connecting blogs that you can “Click” on to easily move back and forth through the series.

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A French Drain is just a part of a Drainage System.  Many people refer to basically any type of Drain in or around their home as a French Drain.  This actually in not correct.

 

Before you can really understand what a French Drain is, you first must be familiar with a Drainage System and what it involves.

A Drainage System has three parts.  It has an “Intake” to bring water into the Drainage System.  It is placed in a low area where water is standing or is in area where water sometimes runs across it over the surface or under the surface or both.  An “Intake” will be a French Drain, Surface Drain or Sump Pump.

In a Simple Drainage System there will only be One “Intake.”  In a Complex Drainage System there will be several Intakes.  They may vary in type and size.  For Example, You may have a Drainage System with a Surface Drain, and a French Drain and a Sump Pump all as separate  Intakes in the Drainage System.  The Intakes will vary in number and type depending on what water issues you are trying to fix.

The “Transition” is the second part of the Drainage System which is the Drain Pipe that moves the water out of the area that is flooded.  It is your water “High Way, ” as it were.  Typically there are two types of Transition Drain Pipes that will be covered later.

Finally you have an “Exit” which releases the water from the drainage system.  It must be in an area that is lower than the French Drain or Surface Drain that is you “Intake.”

 

 

A French Drain  is a perforated pipe that is basically full of slits or holes.  A trench is dug across the problem drainage area.  The dirt from the trench is hauled away.  The perforated pipe is placed in the trench.  The Drainage trench is dug deep enough so that the perforated French Drain Pipe is several inches below ground level when placed in the trench.  Next gravel or some type of crushed stone is placed on top and around the French Drain perforated pipe until the trench is full.

 

Once a French Drain is completed you will see gravel on the surface in a place where dirt use to be.

A French Drain is designed to take in and move a large amount of water.  It covers a large area with water standing on or moving across the area.  It needs to have some “Slope” or “Fall” to drain the water.  The pipe needs to run down hill to the exit point to release it from the Drainage System.  If it is up hill in all directions from the French Drain then there is a problem.  We all know that water will not flow up hill.  Some times this can be overcome when it is only slightly up hill by digging the trench deeper as you go up hill.  Still the exit point in the Drainage System must be lower than the French Drain where the water is taken into the drainage system, or the water will never drain.

In conclusion, a French Drain is a perforated Pipe in a trench covered in gravel.  It is the “Intake” part of a Drainage System.  It covers a wide area and needs to be higher than the exit point of the Drainage System.

This is the first in a series of blogs about French Drains and all other types of Drains as well.  If you would like to learn more just Click on the “Next Blog” below.

Next Drain Blog


Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair — Installing – French Drains – Surface Drains – Channel Drains – Sump Pumps

Providing Expert Sprinkler RepairBroken Sprinkler Pipes Sprinkler Head AdjustmentSprinkler Valve Replacement

Servicing all of Central and Western Oklahoma since 1993.

French Drain Installation

Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair has been diagnosing and solving Drainage Problems since 1993.  Water has the ability to get into places around your home where you really don’t want it to be.  Some drainage problems are easy to solve.  Typically water enters the problem drainage area one way from one source.  The really tricky drainage problems occur when water enters the problem drainage area from multiple directions and from multiple sources.  Sometimes a secondary water source can’t be seen or identified until the primary water problem source is eliminated.

An example of this occurs when water is running into a problem area in an obvious way over the ground where you can see it.

Simple enough.

A drainage system is installed with a surface drain as the “intake” with drainage pipe running to an exit point.  Initially the water drains away and everything looks great.  The next day water is back and is all around the surface drain, but below the edge and it hasn’t rained at all, so no additional water ran over the surface of the ground to flood the area.  The primary water source was solved, ( The surface water run off ) but the secondary water source was not.  Which was sub-surface water, (ground water) running into the area.  A surface drain can’t drain “ground water.”  A French Drain should have initially been installed instead of a Surface Drain.  A French Drain can drain both Surface Water and Ground Water.

 

river rock french drain install

A French Drain Can Handle Standing Water

 

Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair installs a variety of other types of Drains.  Our Drainage Systems may utilize: French Drains, Surface Drains, Channel Drains, Trench Drains, Basin Drains, and Sump Pumps.  In the past 26 years, we have installed French Drains to keep water away from home and business foundations, Surface Drains to keep water away from sidewalks and driveways,  Trench Drains, and French Drains to keep standing water out of flowerbeds and yards, and Sump Pumps to remove water from basements and outdoor low lying areas.

Wow, Some Drainage Problems are tougher than others.  Had a customer in Chickasha with an unusual Drainage Problem.  She had a new Driveway installed.  The Cement work was nice enough but they left out one major consideration when installing the new Driveway.  Even after a small rain the water would run right down the driveway, under the Garage Door and directly into the Garage.  This was a bad problem that was about to get worse.  The first big rain came and everything was magnified.  The Rushing water took out the garage door and the back wall of the garage.  Yikes!!

Hmm,?  What to do?  The company that installed the Driveway was nowhere to be found.  No surprise.

The water volume was huge and the customer had no means to redo the driveway which was substantial.

The solution took a little “Out Of The Box Thinking”.

We Installed an 8 inch metal channel drain grate across the driveway.  But with no channel drain underneath.  A large channel drain could not handle the water volume that we were dealing with.  Instead of installing a channel drain underneath the grate, we cut completely through the driveway concrete and installed two 6 inch French Drains stacked on top of each other underneath the Channel Drain Grate.

This took place in July of 2017.  Since then not a drop of water has reached the garage.

We put two French Drains under a larger version of a drain that looks like the above picture.

Drainage Systems can be made up of one drain or a combination of many drains.  Drainage  problems can be very complex.   Complex Drainage Problems may require a combination of several different types of drains all inter-connected and working together.  Other times the drainage problem may be simple and straight-forward requiring only one drain or several of the same type of drain connected together.

An example of a complex drainage system would be:  A French Drain in the back yard connected to a Surface Drain near a flower bed connected to several gutter downspouts, which are connected to a Channel Drain going across a driveway, which is connected to additional Surface Drain in the front yard, which runs to a Curb Fitting that lets all the water drain out on to the street.

A simple Drainage System might consist of a Surface Drain that is connected to a second Surface Drain which runs to a Pop-up Emitter which lets water drain over the curb and into the street.

An “Exit Point” is the term used for where all the water leaves the Drainage System.  Determining the Exit Point is very critical.  It is one of the first things we do when diagnosing a Drainage Problem.

French Drain with stepping stones

French Drain with stepping stones

 

French Drains can be installed by themselves, or as part of a Drainage System that uses other French Drains, Surface Drains, or other Drain combinations.  Typically a French Drain is used to protect a broad area that has a lot of standing water.  A French Drain might run along side a homes foundation, or beside a driveway, or on any Drainage Project where Sub-Surface water is the primary problem.  If water is running toward your home under ground ( through sandy soil), A French Drain is the only Solution  for draining away water flowing under ground.

 

If you live in Oklahoma City and need a French Drain installed in your yard, or along your driveway, or near your foundation, give Give us a call.  If you live in Edmond or Norman and need a Surface Drain installed in the concrete in your sidewalk or driveway, we can help.  If you live in Mustang or Yukon and would like to protect your trees or flower beds from standing water with a French Drain,

 

 

Cutting The Curb and Installing Curb Fitting for French Drain

Cutting The Curb and Installing Curb Fitting for French Drain

 

Every time it rains, do you have standing water on your driveway, sidewalk, or even LEAKING INTO YOUR HOUSE?  If you need DRAINAGE SOLUTIONS,  WE can help!  We specialize in: French Drains, Surface Drains, Channel Drains, Basement Drains, Trench Drains, Basin Drains, and Sump Pumps.

Problem Drainage Area

This Area Needs a French Drain!

 


Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair — Installing – French Drains – Surface Drains – Channel Drains – Sump Pumps

Providing Expert Sprinkler RepairBroken Sprinkler Pipes Sprinkler Head AdjustmentSprinkler Valve Replacement

Servicing all of Central and Western Oklahoma since 1993.

 

If you have water standing in your flowerbed we can install a French Drain For you.  If water is standing on your driveway or sidewalk a Surface Drain or Channel Drain set in concrete might be what you need.  If water is standing in your basement a Sump Pump installation is a good idea.

Drain Pipe for French Drain running under sidewalk

French Drain Pipe running to exit

Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair –  Installing French Drains and providing Expert Sprinkler Repair since 1993.

FRENCH DRAIN AS PART OF A DRAINAGE SYSTEM

 

 

Drainage Systems can be made up of one drain or a combination of many drains.  Drainage  problems can be very complex.   Complex Drainage Problems may require a combination of several different types of drains all inter-connected and working together.  Other times the drainage problem may be simple and straight-forward requiring only one drain or several of the same type of drain connected together.

An example of a complex drainage system would be:  A French Drain in the back yard connected to a Surface Drain near a flower bed connected to several gutter downspouts, which are connected to a Channel Drain going across a driveway, which is connected to additional Surface Drain in the front yard, which runs to a Curb Fitting that lets all the water drain out on to the street.

A simple Drainage System might consist of a Surface Drain that is connected to a second Surface Drain which runs to a Pop-up Emitter which lets water drain over the curb and into the street.

Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair Installs all types of Drainage Systems.

Today we installed a 6 Inch French Drain at an apartment complex near Lake Heffner.  The French Drain started in the back yard of one unit.  The Drain Pipe went under the fence and into the adjoining unit’s back yard.  The French Drain then looped around their patio and out under their fence to the west.  To get the 6 inch Drain Pipe to the correct Exit Point, we had to cut out 30 feet of sidewalk and run the French Drain Pipe under the sidewalk.  Next, we replaced the sidewalk with new concrete.  Finally, we dug a drainage ditch across the front yard to the parking lot.  We covered the Drain Pipe with sod that we carefully removed when digging the trench.  At the edge of the parking lot a 6 inch Pop-Up Emitter was installed to release the Storm water.  Seven Gutters were connected directly into the Drainage System along the way.

This particular Drainage System was made up of 55 Feet of 6 inch French Drain, 78 Feet of Solid ADS Solid Drain Pipe, Seven Gutter Connections, and one 6 inch Pop-Up Emitter.

Surface Drain in Low Area in the Corner

Surface Drain in Low Area in the Corner

 

 


Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair — Installing – French Drains – Surface Drains – Channel Drains – Sump Pumps

Providing Expert Sprinkler RepairBroken Sprinkler Pipes Sprinkler Head AdjustmentSprinkler Valve Replacement

Servicing all of Central and Western Oklahoma since 1993.

 

If you have water standing in your flowerbed we can install a French Drain For you.  If water is standing on your driveway or sidewalk a Surface Drain or Channel Drain set in concrete might be what you need.  If water is standing in your basement a Sump Pump installation is a good idea.

Drain Pipe for French Drain running under sidewalk

Drain Pipe for French Drain running under sidewalk

We Installed a Double Six inch French Drain in Edmond this week.  A Double Six Inch French Drain is two six inch French Drains laid side by side in one very wide and deep trench.  It is designed to move a huge amount of water away from a home.   Our customer had several different drainage problems in their back yard.  After a thunderstorm, water would run under their back fence and into their garage.  The back yard was on a steep hillside and the water would run very fast down the hill and into the garage.

Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair installed 2 large six inch French Drains across the water’s path.  This allowed the water to be diverted into the French Drain which then ran through drain pipe to a curb outlet at the street.  Three Gutter Down Spouts were connected into the French Drain.  The French Drain created a protective barrier for the garage.  A 12 inch Surface Drain was also included in the Drainage System.  It was placed up against the driveway and connected with 4 inch Solid drain pipe to the 6 inch French Drain.  Water was completely rerouted away from the home.  A French Drain  and Surface Drain combination in this case was the best solution to this particular drainage problem.

Installing a Curb Outlet for a French Drain in Edmond
Installing a Curb Outlet for a French Drain in Edmond

 

Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair  installed a 4 inch French Drain in East Norman this week.  The customer had water standing on the side of his house that was causing foundation damage.  He contracted a Structural Engineer to come out and look at the Drainage Problem and to give him some advise.

The Structural Engineer recommended a French Drain to protect and draw water away from the foundation.  He said that, “he had recommended French Drain Installation to solve similar problems for home owners many times in the past.  The Structural Engineer was confident that it would solve the Drainage Problem.

 

Next, our customer went online and found us by searching under, ” Norman Oklahoma French Drain.”
The Gentleman gave us a call to set up an appointment.  We arrived on the agreed time and provided a ( Free- No Obligation- Drainage Diagnostic and Quote) We came out and looked at his Drainage Problem and designed a Drainage System to solve his, Standing-Water Problem.”  We also recommended a surface drain in a corner where water was coming off a steep part of the roof and overwhelming the gutter.

 

Installing a Curb Outlet For a French Drain in Edmond

Installing a Curb Outlet For a French Drain in Edmond

The customer let us know that he was ready to move forward.  We scheduled the Drainage System Installation for the following week.  When the scheduled day arrived, we installed the Drainage System.  The Drain was made up of a 6 inch French Drain running 30 feet along the East side of the house.  It curved around the corner of the house.  At that point a 12 inch Surface Drain was connected to the French Drain with 4 inch pipe.  The 6 inch French Drain at that point changed to 6 inch Solid Drain Pipe and continued under ground 65 feet to a pop-up emitter at the curb in the front yard near the street.

Edmond Oklahoma has been the location for many French Drain Installations for us in the past several years.  Recently we ripped out an old Surface Drain that was under a deck.  The Surface Drain was too small for the job and did not Protect the Foundation from Standing Water


 The First step was to take out part of the deck along the wall.  Next we took out the Surface Drain and the Three Inch Pipe which was too small.  Digging a trench along the foundation came next.  We had to ensure the, “Fall” to make sure the water would run from left to right. 

 Next a French Drain Liner  needed to be installed.  This was necessary to maintain the integrity of the trench and to keep the French Drain Pipe from filling up with sand and getting clogged over the next few years.  Oklahoma Drainage  then installed 4 inch ADS Perf/Soc French Drain Pipe along the course of the French Drain.  Next we connected the end of the French Drain Pipe to Solid 4 Inch ADS Drain pipe to continue along the trench to the Pop-Up Emitter at the Exit Point.

Running Drain Pipe to the Curb From French Drain in Back Yard

Running Drain Pipe to the Curb From French Drain in Back Yard

 

 

 


IF YOU NEED WATER DRAINED AWAY FROM YOUR HOME OR BUSINESS CALL OKLAHOMA DRAINAGE AND SPRINKLER REPAIR – 405-203 9419

We install all types of Drainage Systems and French Drains.

French Drain Installation is a primary focus for us.

A French Drain Can Handle Standing Water

Since 1993 we have gained a lot of experience addressing drainage problems Drainage problems can be complicated.  The solution is not always clear to the untrained eye. We have repaired or overhauled many french drains and drainage systems that were installed by, “weekend warriors, a brother-in-law, or a landscaping company that also installs drains.”  They all can install Drainage Systems, Just not very well.

Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair has over 26 years of experience Diagnosing Drainage Problems.  This ensures that a Drainage System that we install won’t have Drain Pipes that are too small, or Surface Drains installed where French Drains Should be placed, or Exit Points that allow water to Stand and become stagnant.  The above examples are just three of many “Pit – Falls” that our experienced Drainage System Experts can easily avoid.

Surface Drain installed in Oklahoma City

Surface Drain installed in Oklahoma City

 

Our Drainage Systems utilize:

French Drains– 3 inch, 4 inch, and 6 inch

Surface Drains, 4 inch, 6 inch, and 12 inch

Channel Drains, 2 inch, and 4 inch

Sump Pumps 3/4 horse to two horse

Servicing Central Oklahoma including: Oklahoma City, Norman, Edmond, Yukon, Mustang, Newcastle, Midwest City, Del City, Moore, Blanchard, Choctaw, and all surrounding areas.

Connecting Gutter into French Drain

Connecting Gutter into French Drain

 

French Drains can be installed by themselves, or as part of a Drainage System that uses other French Drains, Surface Drains, or other Drain combinations.  Typically a French Drain is used to protect a broad area that has a lot of standing water.  A French Drain might run along side a homes foundation, or beside a driveway, or on any Drainage Project where Sub-Surface water is the primary problem.  If water is running toward your home under ground ( through sandy soil), A French Drain is the only Solution  for draining away water flowing under ground.

 

 

 

If you live in Oklahoma City and need a French Drain installed in your yard, or along your driveway, or near your foundation, give us a call.  If you live in Edmond or Norman and need a Surface Drain installed in the concrete in your sidewalk or driveway, we can help.  If you live in Mustang or Yukon and would like to protect your trees or flower beds from standing water with a French Drain,We specialize in just that!


Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair 405 203 9419

We Install Drainage Systems to fit various needs for home owners an businesses.  A Drainage System, can utilize French Drains, Surface Drains, Channel Drains or Sump Pumps as the intake part to the Drainage System.  The Drain or Sump Pump brings water into the Drain Pipe.  The Drain pipe takes the water to the ” Exit.”  Which is Either a “Curb Outlet” or a “ Pop Up Emitter.”

The Three parts of A Drainage System are:   THE  INTAKE ( French Drain or Surface Drain ) etc.  The TRANSITION ( The Drain Pipe ) which can be many sizes or type. The EXIT ( A Curb Outlet or Pop Up Emitter )

new curb outlet

Curb Outlet as an Exit Point for a French Drain in Edmond

The Drainage part of our company name means that we solve water problems for people in Oklahoma.  Heavy rain is becoming more common.  Back in 1993 when I first started, a hard rain was considered to be about an Inch per/hour.  It was fairly rare but not too uncommon.  Today things are different.  A weather report of rain fall at or above 4 inches per/hour was not uncommon in 2019.  Excess water causes all types of damage to property both residential and commercial.

pea gravel french drain

French Drain wit Pea Gravel

Our Drainage Systems drain water away from places you don’t want it to be.  You might have water standing along the foundation of your house, or inside your basement.  You might have water on your driveway or flowerbed too.

Designing a French Drain or a Drainage System

When I talk to a potential customer while doing a Drainage System estimate, I take a lot of things into consideration.  First I have the Customer show me where water is standing or where it is going that it shouldn’t.  This is part of defining the specific problem area.  Sometimes the Water Problem Area is larger and more involved than the customer realizes.  Once the Water Problem Area is clearly defined,  the next step is to determine how the water is getting to the problem area.  Many times there is more than one Water Source to the Water Problem area.  A big mistake in Drainage System Design is to stop once the most obvious  Water Source is found.  A Drainage System Designer must be a detective to some degree.  For Example:  Water running down the hill and onto the back patio might be the most obvious water source.  Sub-surface water or a neighbor’s new gutter downspout could also be contributing.  Most of the time water gets into the problem area from more than one source.

This is a good place for a French Drain

This is a good place for a French Drain

Next you must decide where to take the water.  This is determining an Exit Point for the Drainage System.  If possible you want your exit point to be down hill from the problem area.  If it is up hill in all directions from the problem area, then the only solution is a Sump Pump.

Once an exit Point is determined, you must ask yourself if there is any way to install two exit points.  Usually this can only work when an exit point can work on both ends of a Drainage System.  The benefit of two Exit Points in a Drainage System is it greatly increases the water capacity for the Drainage System.  It can move much more water faster during a heavy rain than a system with just one Exit Point.  Most Drainage Systems can only utilize one Exit Point.  In 21 years of Drainage System Installation,  I would say 10% of our Drainage Systems have two Exit Points.

Popup Emitter to release water from a French Drain in Yukon

Popup Emitter to release water from a French Drain in Yukon

Next we have to decide what type of drain to install in the problem area.  If it is a small area with one water source, Usually a Surface Drain is best.  If the water problem area is large with one or several water sources, a French Drain is usually installed.

If you have several problem drainage areas you must use larger Drain Pipe if you want to connect them together  to one exit point.  Large French Drains should have their own exit point without attaching other Surface Drains or Gutters to them.  It is very common to connect too many drains or gutters into a Drainage System.  A hard rain can overwhelm the Drainage Systems Water Flow Capacity.  When that happens, water backs up and the problem area floods.

I just shake my head when I see 3 French Drains and 5 gutters connected into one exit drain pipe. I see this type of design all the time.  Why spend money for a Drainage System that won’t work?  Lots of Cheap Builders and Fly-By-Night Drainage Companies cut corners on Drainage Systems and French Drains on new home construction.

For a French Drain or a Surface Drain or any type of Drainage System,  If in doubt, use a larger Drain Pipe.  Four Inch Drain Pipe is the most common. Six inch Drain Pipe is always better.   If you are going to connect a French Drain and Surface Drain together, use 6 inch Drain Pipe.


 Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair

Hey Oklahoma, We are expanding to service all of Western Oklahoma as well as Central Oklahoma.  If you live in Elk City, and need a French Drain, we can help.  If water is standing on your driveway in Clinton, Give us a call.  Duncan, Lawton, and Altus are all new areas of service for us.

Since 1993 Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair has solved all types of standing water and drainage issues.  We install Drainage Systems that utilize French Drains, Surface, Drains, Channel Drains, and Sump Pumps depending on the customers needs.

If you have water in a place where you don’t want it, we can help.

We also have Decades of experience repairing all types of Lawn Sprinkler Problems.  Fixing broken sprinkler heads, sprinkler valve problems and controller trouble just to name a few things.

French Drains as part of a Drainage System – 

Many times people use the term ” French Drain” as general name for a Drain used in or around your home.  French Drains are designed to move a lot of water over a large flooded area.  They are also designed to take water in on the surface of the ground or below the surface of the ground.  This is very important if the water coming into the flooded area is moving through the ground or coming up from underneath.  ” Sub Surface Water Movement.”  The picture below is not a French Drain!

A French Drain looks like this

A French Drain Can Handle Standing Water

A French Drain can take in water in a broad area.  It can move a much larger volume of water compared to a Surface Drain.  Also, it can move sub surface water moving into the area where a Surface Drain won’t move any water at all.

Surface Drains are designed to move surface water only on a smaller scale in confined areas.

Each solves specific drainage problems.  A Drainage System may use one or both together or even several using many types of drains.

Do you have standing water in a large area in your yard?  Typically this calls for a French Drain.  A French Drain is a great way to control standing water in a large grassy area.  It can also protect areas from flooding to a certain degree.  As long as the French Drains capacity to move water is not exceeded.  If the French Drains capacity is exceeded then water will stand in the drainage area until the rain stops and the drain has time to catch up.  A good way to prevent this is to install a bigger French Drain with a larger pipe.  The difference between a 3 inch French Drain and a 6 inch French Drain is huge.

Another way to beef up a French Drain is to connect gutter down spouts in front of the French Drain.  The water coming off the roof causes suction in the French Drain Behind it.  This greatly increases the French Drains ability to move water without increasing the size of the French Drain Pipe.

Gutter Downspout Connected to 6 Inch French Drain

Recently we installed a French Drain inside the court yard of a rest home in Norman.  We had several interesting challenges to overcome that were not typical for a French Drain Installation.  The court yard was in the center of the home and was a secure area for the patrons.  We had to put down painters tarps to run our wheel barrows over.  We took out 44 loads of dirt and brought in 52 loads of Crushed one inch lime stone for the French Drain.  Each trip was over a hundred yards from the trailer in the parking lot, in the front door, down the hall, making two turns along the way.  Each time we had to be escorted by security.  Needless to say, the installation of this particular drainage system took a while.In the above picture, the French Drain runs along the low area crossing all the areas where water would stand each time it rained.

French Drain in Rest Home Courtyard

When a French Drain is installed, a big mistake that is made by many people is to cover up the gravel with dirt.  This is a big mistake.  Basically it is ” Putting the cork back in the bottle.”  If the French Drain is in full sun and has a type of grass surrounding it that spreads on its own such a ” Tift” or “Bermuda” , Grass will grow over it and the French Drain will eventually disappear.  Grass covering a French Drain is a good thing if it grows across the drain without adding dirt.  The Grass thatch acts a water filter preventing clogging and extending the life of the Drainage System.

When a French Drain is in Full Shade, or the surrounding grass will not spread on its own, such as with Fescue,  other steps must be taken.  One option is to just leave it alone.  If you don’t mind how it looks, it will drain a large amount of water for many years.  Many times a French Drain can be a landscaping focal point.  They can be dressed up with all kinds of Rocks and Stones and Plants.

 

Just what is a French Drain?”  Many times people incorrectly

A French Drain can protect your foundation!

use the phrase, “French Drain,”  to apply to many different types of Drains that could be used in a Drainage System.  The term is widely used and many times incorrectly connected to “Surface Drains,” or “Channel Drains.”

A Surface Drain has a grate that sits on top of a basin.  The basin is underground.  A Drain Pipe is connected underground to an outlet on the Drain Basin Storm-Water Drains through the grate into the Drain Basin.  Once in the Drain Basin, water travels out of the basin through a Drain Pipe.  The Storm-Water continues downhill in an underground Drain Pipe to an exit point.

THIS IS NOT A FRENCH DRAIN!

A Surface Drain may come in many different shapes or sizes.  The Drain Grate may be round or square.  Here is a picture of a common Surface Drain.

A Channel Drain is a type of Surface Drain and many times is installed in concrete across sidewalks or driveways.

Channel Drain

A French Drain is completely different from a Surface Drain.  A basic French Drain consists of a Perforated Drain Pipe in the bottom of a trench.  The Drain Pipe should have a neoprene sock around the Perforated Drain Pipe.   This is to ensure that the Drain Pipe does not become clogged.

The dirt that was taken out to make the trench is hauled away.  It is replaced by some type of small stone or gravel depending on what is desired or available.  I prefer crushed 1 inch lime stone.  It is the most economical option in my area.  Pea Gravel or some other type of small stone can work just as well.    The lime-stone or gravel is placed in the trench on top of the perforated Drain Pipe and filled all the way to the surface (ground level).   In some cases where the French Drain needs to be deep or is being placed in sandy soil, a special trench liner must be placed in the trench before the perforated Drain Pipe or the Gravel are installed.  This helps maintain the integrity of the trench over time.  It also increases the cost of the French Drain and the amount of time to install it.  I install a trench liner in a French Drain about 20% of the time.  Most of the time a liner in not needed.

French Drain March 2011
A French Drain is designed to handle a large volume of water and cover a large area. The Drain is anyplace the trench goes. It has many applications and can be used in many situations.  It can be installed by itself or incorporated into a Drainage System with Surface Drains or Gutter Down-Spouts connected to it.
The main downfall of a French Drain is that they, for the most part aren’t very pretty.  They don’t look very nice in a yard once they are completed.
Depending on the area the French Drain is installed and the type of grass around the French Drain, will dictate whether grass grows over the lime stone.  Grass can grow up and through the gravel in the French Drain over time eventually covering the gravel.  This is Ok.  It won’t have a measurable effect on the performance of the drain.
DONT COVER THE GRAVEL IN THE FRENCH DRAIN WITH DIRT.  THE FRENCH DRAIN WON’T WORK IF THE TRENCH IS CLOGGED WITH DIRT.  DON’T EVEN INSTALL IT IF YOU ARE GOING TO COVER IT UP WITH DIRT.

DECORATIVE STONE CAN BE USED TO COVER A FRENCH DRAIN AND THEY LOOK GREAT AND LAST A LIFETIME.

French Drains Can Look Great!


French Drain Installation, Drainage Systems, Surface Drain, Sump pumps, – Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair

Hard rain and flooding seem to be more common all the time.  When I started this business in 1993, having over an inch of rainfall in an hour was pretty extreme.  Now having over 4 inch an hour rainfall is not unheard of and is becoming more common.

Protecting our homes and businesses from unwanted water should be a goal for all of us.

Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair has seen and dealt with virtually every possible Drainage and Standing water problem that can occur in or around your home.  With over 2000 Drainage Systems installed since 1993, we have amassed a great deal of experience.  This is help full in seeing underlying problems and secondary issues that may be hard to see at first for the ” Untrained Eye.”  This allows us to get things right the first time.  In this business EXPERIENCE TRULY COUNTS!

Hiring your brother in law to put in your Drainage System or French Drain is as bad as hiring a Lawn mowing company that does landscaping and drains too?  Water can cause a huge amount of damage.  How important is your money and your home?

Blane Callen, 405 203 9419

 

Is this your yard?

French Drain Installation has been an area of focus for Oklahoma Drainage and Sprinkler Repair  for the past 26 years.  During that time we have installed over 2000 French Drains in Central and Western Oklahoma A French Drain is one of several types of Drains that can make – up a Drainage System.   French Drains are intended to move large amounts of water away from a Problem Drainage Area.  Water may be standing in that area, flowing across the area on the surface, or flowing across the area below ground or “Sub Surface.”  A French Drain can remove Standing Water, Water Flow at ground level, or water flow below ground level. (Surface Drains can’t do this!)

A French Drain many is  used to move water away from or protect foundations.  A French Drain will move both Surface Water and Sub Surface water away from a buildings foundation to an Exit Point where the water can be released without doing damage.

 

Cutting The Curb and Installing Curb Fitting for French Drain

Cutting The Curb and Installing Curb Fitting for French Drain

This is a great place for a French Drain

Installing French Drain under sidewalk

Installing French Drain under sidewalk

French Drain Installation this week was a little more difficult than normal.  Many times the route that a Perforated French Drain Pipe must travel to its exit point is not very easy from an installation point of view.  French Drains may have to travel through tree roots, (big ones) under sidewalks, through retaining walls, around swing sets or dog kennels or Mom’s Prize Rose Bush.  The 4 inch French Drain we installed this week was in Oklahoma City south of 23rd in an old part of town where all the houses were old 2 or 3 story homes with lots of huge Elm Trees.  The Elm Tree in Question actually was just an old stump that had been topped out but not completely removed.  They left the roots just for us!  The roots were growing into the homes foundation and were right in the way of the path of the French Drain.  Forty feet of solid Elm Roots and 4 chain-saw blades later We were successful in running a new French Drain through a tree stump.  Yuck! “Well you gotta  do what you gotta do!”

 

 

French Drain with colored river rock

French Drain with colored river rock

A little info about French Drain Pipe and Tree Roots.  Normally tree roots don’t seek out and penetrate French Drain Pipe.  Tree roots seek moisture and residual water that may stay inside Solid Drain Pipe.  French Drain Pipe is perforated.  Water that does not reach the exit point of the French Drain will seep out of the Pipe into the surrounding dirt.  Solid Drain Pipe that is used with Surface Drains can be penetrated and eventually clogged by roots if the pipe does not have good slope or “Fall”.  If the solid pipe does not drain well and has residual water, tree roots will seek it out.