French Drain Failures: Three Possible Causes

Sorting out the mess that ensues after a basement flooding is an expensive affair. You may have to not only throw away soaked carpets and mattresses, but also completely replace your basement walls. This is in addition to getting rid of mold and other moisture-related problems.

Installing a French drain is one of the most effective ways of preventing a basement flooding. This drain usually helps to divert the water from the foundation of your house way before it has a chance to penetrate your walls. And in cases where the water finds its way into your basement, an interior French drain can come in handy in helping get rid of this water. This is something that goes a long way when it comes to minimizing water damage.

However, there are times when a French drain can completely fail to protect your home from the harmful effects of a basement flooding. The following are possible causes of this failure.

Pipe clogging

The pipes used to construct French drains usually have perforations. These holes are designed to allow water to seep into the pipe. However, they sometimes let in silt.

With time, silt accumulation usually reduces the effectiveness of the drains to clear water. And if the problem is not corrected, continued accumulation eventually blocks the pipes, something that will leave a house vulnerable to water flooding.

Filter clogging

In a bid to prevent pipe clogging, contractors sometimes install filters. These filters are usually designed prevent silt invasion. The problem is that sometimes these filters do their job so well that they end up getting clogged. And if they are not cleaned in time, they usually end up preventing the flood water from seeping into the drain pipe and hence increase the risk of flooding.

Pipe collapse

During installation, it is common for French drain pipes to be covered with gravel. This, in addition to the layers of accumulated dirt that eventually end up covering exterior drain pipes, usually puts a lot of pressure on these pipes. Over time, these pipes usually wear out, causing their walls to collapse under the weight of the layers of dirt and gravel.

Areas that collapse usually restrict the flow of water. They therefore reduce the effectiveness of the system. Also, these regions not only reduce the speed of water flow but also form sudden protrusions within the pipe. This usually encourages siltation. It eventually increases the rate at which the pipe clogs with silt and hence lead to further drainage complications.

To restore the effectiveness of your French drain, you will have to replace collapsed pipes and clean clogged filters. You may also have to change the location of your pipes in order to reduce the rate at which they clog. These are things that an experienced contractor or plumbing service like R Acres Plumbing Company LLC can help you with.


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