Joe Swett
french drain
By Published On: February 15th, 2019Comments Off on Consider a French Drain for Drainage Problems15.8 min read

Is your lawn retaining water, flooding and creating mold in your yard because it is not draining properly? Then, you should consider hiring a local Irrigation Company to install a French drain for you to eliminate the drainage problem.

Here is some information about French drains:

What is a French drain?

HGTV states that “the most reliable way to eliminate undesirable, free-standing water is to install French drains with slotted pipes, filter fabric and gravel. The old way of installing French drains is to do it without the gravel and the fabric. Without the gravel and the fabric, however, the drain can clog up with sand and soil over time. The best practice for installing French drains is to use perforated drainage pipes, which allow water to enter or exit through small openings along the pipe. The perforations can be circles or slots. But slotted pipes are better than pipes with small round holes because they tend to reduce the amount of fine soil particles that get into the pipe.”

“Water always flows downhill, and by the easiest route possible. That’s the basic concept behind a French drain, a slightly sloped trench filled with round gravel and a pipe that diverts water away from your house.

Why is it called a French drain?

The French drain does not come from the country. It is from Henry French, a judge and farmer in Concord, Massachusetts, who promoted the idea in an 1859 book about farm drainage.

How to Install a French drain?

Here are the steps to install a French drain in your yard to allow water to flow properly:

  1. Dig a trench
  2. Lay pipe
  3. Cover the pipe
  4. Lay filter fabric
  5. Back fill with top soil to proper grade height

The trench depth and width can vary depending on size of yard and the drainage issue. Typically it should be 5 to 6 inches wide and 8 to 12 inches deep. It needs a slope of no less than 1% – slope at least 1 inch for every 8 feet of length.


A French drain is a perforated tube that allows water to enter while keeping soil out and over time, the drains can be overgrown by tree roots, stray soil, gravel and other debris. It is common practice to clean it out on an annual basis.

Looking for a top irrigation and sprinkler company in Tampa Bay? Sunrise Irrigation & Sprinklers is honored by the feedback they receive from their customers, peers, and business rating systems. They also go the extra mile to partner with the best vendors and trade organizations for knowledge and support.

At Sunrise Irrigation & Sprinklers, we know sprinkler installation and repair, landscape lighting and all-natural mosquito control and more. Our highly qualified, fully licensed and insured specialists have been beautifying residential and commercial landscapes in Palm Harbor and the Tampa Bay area for more than 20 years. As an established, family-owned irrigation management business, we believe that keeping Florida homes and businesses looking their best begins with a healthy lawn. Give us a call at 727-772-3819 or schedule an initial consultation to discuss how we can help your lawn become lusher, greener, and healthier.

About the Author: Joe Swett

Former U.S. Coast Guard and Tampa-native Joseph Swett is the owner of Sunrise Irrigation, a Palm Harbor-based company that has been providing sprinkler and irrigation services in the Tampa Bay Area, Florida, for more than 20 years. A RainBird-trained landscape specialist, Mr. Swett is dedicated to helping Florida homes and businesses implement effective irrigation technologies and transition towards smart water conservation. In his spare time, Joe sponsors and plays in two men’s softball leagues, but also enjoys surfing and going fishing with his family.


No Service Call Fees

All Calls Answered

Have a Problem? We Have Solutions!
Call Us at (727) 275-2204

Have a Problem? We Have Solutions!
Call Us at (727) 275-2204