Why French Drains Without Inlet Basins are Maintenance Free
I wanted to show you guys a French drain at work. You always see us building French drains, but I don’t show enough footage. Don’t do enough video of actually working French drains. So I’m in Washington Township, Michigan. I’m in Glacier Club. Beautiful, beautiful community golf course community. This gentleman gets all the rain off the golf course. Now it’s down to a drizzle and still because of the pathway and the elevation, look at the moving water and this is a drizzle. So you should see this when the rain’s really picked up. It’s, it’s, it’s pretty amazing.
So you know, over time this grove has been etched. There’s nothing you can do. The water’s coming in here. Not going to beat that. What you want to do is you want to build a system. So what we did is we put a French drain system right along here, that’s the low point, and it’s picking up all this water. It’s pouring in and the drains taking it in. You know, notice how you don’t see the water running on the surface and going into the storm drain.
Now I don’t have any inlet basins. I preach against no inlet basins. The way I build my systems, you don’t need an inlet basin. So here we are, we’re down to a drizzle and this thing looks like a fire hose when we have a really, really good, even moderate downpour. I’m just drizzle a little water. We’re moving a lot of water — just fantastic. And again, no surface water. This water is not running across the surface to find its way into the storm drain catch basin. This is why we go through the sidewall of the storm drain catch basin right here, and the bottom of this trench is going to be empty. When this rain event is over, the French drain system will completely empty outright to the bottom so it won’t freeze in the winter. It’ll stay functional.
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