Land drainage isn’t rocket science, if you have excess water, you need to make sure you can drain it effectively to stop it turning into a waterlogged swamp. It makes makes good sense to employ a specialist land drainage contractor to do the job for you. The easiest and simplest way to control water is by drainage pipes. It’s easier to install a land drain than you think.
A French drain is the simplest. In short it’s a plastic pipe which is perforated with small holes. Depending of the size of the pipe chosen you will need to dig a trench for it to sit in. As a good rule of thumb, the width of the trench should be the pipe diameter plus 4x the size of the granular fill. If you are installing a drain in a garden make sure to keep the turf to reuse later.
Most layouts use a herringbone pattern, which need a soakaway to run into storing the drained water and letting it seep away naturally. The general rule is that the bottom of it should be 1m below where your pipe will enter into the soakaway pit. It should also be located at least 5 metres away from any habitable property.
Your trench will need lining too with non-angular stone or shingle. This will act like a sieve, allowing the water to escape out of the drain pipe while keeping silt filtered. For an even more efficient soakaway, you could line the trench with a non-woven geotextile or sleeve the pipe with a geotextile soak. If you need a longer length of pipe for your trench, the lengths of pipe can be easily joined together with additional couplers. With the trench installed, complete your installation by covering the drainage pipe with another 30cm of clean non angular stone. Then backfill with approximately 30cm of dug material, before putting the turf carefully back on top of the installation.
And that’s it, it really is that simple. However remember in hot, dry summer months when you need water the drains will still be there, so make sure your installation is appropriate for your land needs.
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