Why You Might Need a French Drain in Garland
When it rains, does your Garland, Texas, home have adequate drainage? If you notice puddles in your yard, excessive dampness or dripping in the basement, or cracks in your foundation, it may be a sign that those Garland showers are depositing rainwater too close to your house. A French drain is a simple solution to get rid of that water.
Why Do Homes Need Drainage?
Parts of Texas are rather dry, but that’s not true for Garland. The average monthly precipitation in Garland is almost always over three inches (with July, August, and January being the exceptions) and in some months it reaches four- and five-inch averages. If your home doesn’t have an adequate drainage system to keep this water away from your foundation, you could experience significant problems down the line.
What Is a French Drain?
A French drain is a little bit like a gutter for your foundation. The same way a gutter collects water off your roof and drains it away, a French drain will pull water from the ground into a ditch, and then into a pipe that escorts the water away from your property.
It starts with a ditch that angles away from your foundation, dug lower than the foundation itself to draw the water away from it. First, gravel goes into the ditch. Then you bury perforated pipes in the ditch at the same angle, so that the water they collect runs away from the house. After the pipes go in, you can fill the ditch with more stones, or you can cover it. The water in the ground that would go into your foundation or the basement instead flows into the ditch, and the pipes are able to carry it away.
Because you can cover them, French drains don’t mess up the look of your landscaping. You can fill them in with loose stones and line them with brick, or cover them with a light layer of soil and plant a few things on top.
How Do French Drains Protect Foundations?
Many properties have low spots, which are places where water collects after it rains. These low spots can be damaging to the foundation, because instead of flowing away from the house, the water seeps into the ground near the house. It may crack the foundation and let water into the basement. In some cases, you’ll even develop a perpetually wet basement, which can breed mold and a host of other issues.
All you need is about 10 feet of space between your foundation and the water, so your French drain doesn’t have to be long to protect your home. You just need to make sure those pools of water are far enough away that they don’t slowly erode your foundation and damage your basement.
Check the way the ground slopes around your house. It needs to be at a downward angle, and just a few inches will do. If you don’t have this angle, look into French drains. Otherwise, you’ll face costly foundation problems down the line that could damage the entire structure of your home.
Image via Flickr by Jeff Tidwell