French drain and storm drain installation - excavation and installation of foundation drains

Team of professional plumbers for the installation of French drains and storm drains

Pro-Drain’s team is available to perform preventive plumbing work such as French drain and storm drain installation.

If you notice water or wet spots around your property, you should consider installing a French drain. Drainage is essential to protect the basement and foundation of your home or business.

If water ever seeps into these areas, many problems could occur. You could seriously damage your foundation materials and mold could form, causing serious problems in the future that could cost you dearly.

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What is a French drain?

A French drain is essentially a ground trench that contains a perforated drainage pipe on a bed of crushed stone. This perforated pipe effectively directs water away from the foundation into a catch basin.

Excavating a French drain prevents water from accumulating on your property and around your home and protects your foundation from moisture. You can choose between an interior french drain or an exterior french drain.

Exterior french drain

The exterior french drain is the most common in Quebec. It requires an excavation along the exterior perimeter of the house with a slight slope to install the drain. The work cannot be done when the ground is frozen. The work period for the installation of a French drain is therefore limited to three seasons (spring, summer, fall).

Interior French drain

Much less common, the interior French drain is installed under the concrete slab of the foundation. The advantage is that it can be accessed for repairs or inspections every month of the year without freezing problems. The interior French drain is ideal for homes with foundations that are difficult to access from the outside because of the neighborhood.

French drain installation

If your soil regularly accumulates water, installing a drainage system is a solution to consider. Indeed, the installation of a drain will allow you to evacuate the accumulation of water in the ground and to avoid the consequences related to a possible water infiltration. In the opposite case, the infiltration could seriously damage your residence or your business and affect your quality of life.

The excavation required for the installation of a French or storm drain is a complex operation that involves several risks. Excavation can be dangerous and that is why it must be done by a team of professionals who have the expertise and the necessary tools to ensure that the operation goes smoothly.

The operation must be performed by a French or storm drain expert. Pro-Drain has the necessary expertise and respects government standards to offer you the best result.

When to schedule a house drain replacement?

If you notice any of the situations described below, we suggest that you contact plumbers and check to see if it poses a health risk. Be sure to do a proper inspection for old construction.

  • Wet concrete
  • Moisture odor associated with infiltration
  • Moldy odor associated with poor drainage
  • High humidity level
  • Presence of water, presence of mold, presence of efflorescence
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Trust Pro-Drain plumbers for a professional drain project and quality drainage

For the installation of your interior and exterior French drains, trust a professional team with years of experience. All emergency work is taken seriously and we make sure to install the French drain as quickly as possible to the best of our abilities.

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French drain installation – Frequently asked questions

How do I install an interior drain?

Interior French drain installation, also known as foundation drain, is popular because it does not require excavation of the entire perimeter of the property. French drains do not require a lot of space and the repair work is much smaller.

The installation of an interior French drain is done from the basement of the property. The drain is installed with a trench in the concrete slab along the concrete walls of the property’s foundation. The drain is then placed in the ground and covered with concrete. The installation of an interior French drain is a major renovation and planning is required. Be aware that the interior drain can be installed or renovated any season of the year, unlike the exterior drain which cannot be worked on in the winter due to frozen ground.

How to install an exterior French drain?

In Quebec, most houses have an exterior French drain. We have a procedure and several steps that we follow to the letter to ensure a professional installation.

What are the steps to install a French drain?

The installation of a French drain is an operation that requires the expertise of a foundation specialist. Indeed, many elements must be taken into account for the installation of the French drain to be done properly and only a French drain expert will be able to ensure it for the good of your house. Furthermore, we follow the building code to the letter when installing French drains while respecting the neighboring properties.

Perform a soil analysis and needs assessment

The first step in the installation of a French drain is to perform a soil analysis and needs assessment. Indeed, we can’t rush in, dig, and put a layer of gravel without first studying the foundation and the soil around it. We look at the type of soil, check the water table carefully, etc. We will provide you with an accurate and complete diagnosis of the soil.

Install protections

Then, before going any further, you must install protections all around the house and the foundations to ensure that the installation of the French drain will not damage the house or its foundations.

Determine the area where the water could be drained (ditch, sewer, well, etc.)

Water that is drained has to go somewhere. So, before we start the French drain installation, we determine the area where the water could be evacuated. This could be a ditch, storm sewer, well, or other.

Excavate the land

This is when the real work begins. We excavate the land. That is to say that we dig a downhill trench all around the house in order to have enough space to proceed with the installation of the French drain.

Compacting the foundation

Once the excavation is done, we compact the foundation. This means that we improve the quality of the soil to provide a firm and solid ground for the foundation. We pay special attention to this step, which is crucial to the success of the French drain installation.

Installing the French drain foundation

Next comes the most crucial step: the installation of the French drain. We run a long pipe perforated with small round holes of standard dimensions that will collect the water from your house and evacuate it to the catchment basin that we will have chosen for you. We take care of the pipes to make sure they don’t get damaged during the installation of the French drain.

Connect the drain to the catch basin

Once the installation of the French drain is complete, we connect it to the catch basin, making sure that the drainage is done properly. Proper drainage is paramount in the installation of the French drain.

Cover the pipes with a bed of crushed stone (also called drainage stone) to allow access to excess water.

Before filling the hole, we place a bed of a few inches of crushed stones (iron ochre, a few inches of aggregates, etc.) so that the excess water is evacuated in the best way possible.

Install a geotextile membrane to filter water from debris

We then install a geotextile membrane. The geotextile membrane is a somewhat special type of membrane. It is a permeable technical textile made of synthetic fibers, used in civil engineering, environmental and landscaping works in order to separate, filter, improve drainage, reinforce as well as distribute more efficiently the loads imposed on soils and surfaces.

Repair cracks in the foundation, installation of waterproof membrane against the wall

If we find cracks in the foundation wall, we will repair them before completing the work. Then, in order to avoid any infiltrations that could occur in the future, we install a waterproof membrane against the wall. This will protect your house and your land.

Clean the land

Finally, once we have installed the French drain, installed the necessary membranes and filled in the hole, we proceed to clean up the area, making sure that everything is safe and does not present any danger for the inhabitants of the house. You can then install street furniture and enjoy your garden without having to worry about bad odors or the strength of the foundation walls.

What are the advantages of the French drain?

Prevents and prevents water accumulation

It helps control basement humidity levels

French drains are easy to install during building construction

Reduces soil erosion

Removes toxic materials and pests

It protects your property

It has a lifespan of approximately 30 years


What is the difference between a French drain and a storm drain?

A storm drain is part of the drainage system on a property to help distribute rainwater. Attached to the gutters of the house, it catches rain or thaw water to prevent water from accumulating in the ground. The storm drain is separate from the sanitary drains, and carries only unsoiled water. The storm drain is connected to the storm sewers and is very important in areas where there is a lot of rain and water accumulation.



How much does it cost to install a French drain?

The price of a French drain installation varies depending on several factors. Think about the materials needed to do the work, the price of labor, the pipes needed, the excavation of the land, or for an interior drain, the demolition of the concrete slab of a foundation. These are some of the factors that will be part of the final billing when installing a French drain.

Be aware that even with the above price estimates, the cost is very likely to change from case to case. All foundations are different, and inconveniences are to be expected.

Cost of Exterior French Drain Installation

For a proper exterior French drain installation, prices range from $15,000 to $20,000. This includes all the steps of the work to be done: the necessary excavation and digging, the installation of the drain in the ground, the installation of the gravel and crushed stones, the installation of the waterproof membrane, the necessary materials such as the pipes and the pump. This price does not take into consideration things that need to be removed to do the excavation such as a patio, a balcony or even a driveway.

Cost of an interior French drain installation

The interior drain varies similarly to the exterior drain, but the price is usually lower. The cost covers the demolition of the concrete slab as well as the reconstruction of the area after the drain is installed in the ground. You can save a lot of money because it does not require removing a patio, balcony, or driveway along the foundation.



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