French Drains vs Trench Drains

Perhaps you’ve started to notice that your drainage system isn’t what it used to be. There might be soggy spots forming around your yard, killing vegetation. Or even worse, water could be leaking into your home and threatening the structural stability of your dwelling.

Whether your drainage system is failing you or your yard isn’t equipped with one in the first place, luckily installing a new drainage system is all it takes to rectify your drainage situation.

However, one very important question remains. Which type of drainage system is best for your property?

Today we’re going to compare and contrast two of the most popular drainage systems, French drains and trench/channel drains, to see which option best suits your yard.

Related: Types of Yard Drainage Solutions

french drain

What Are French Drains?

French drains are one of the most sought after yard drainage solutions. French drains are highly skilled at preventing water from entering into a building’s foundation by redirecting the flow before this can occur.

The primary purpose of this drain is to divert the flow of water away from the yard and home and contend with oversaturated soil.

French drains are composed of perforated pipes placed in dugout trenches in the ground which are connected to an appropriate water outlet. This allows them to primarily deal with moisture within the ground.

French Drain Benefits

There are many clear reasons why homeowners often select French drain installations, as these drainage systems are built to deal with soil saturation in a straightforward and aesthetically appealing manner.

French drains are trusted for keeping basements dry by dealing with water-saturated soil, but they are also favored for not disrupting the appeal of the property.

Because French drains are installed underneath the ground and do not contain any protruding pipes or parts, they do not disrupt the landscaping or aesthetic appeal of the property. Therefore, many homeowners favor this attractive drainage system option.

Subsurface drainage systems, such as French drains, are ideal solutions for preventing water from entering into your home, which can lead to very serious and costly water damage issues.

trench drain

What Are Trench Drains?

Trench drains, also known as channel drains, are surface system drains. They are designed to intercept runoff surface water as it flows throughout the property.

Trench drains assist in keeping the surrounding pavement and surface vegetation dry, making them reliable solutions for avoiding slips and falls.

Trench drains are usually made of a drainage box located underneath the drain grate that installed on top of the box.

This box serves as a transport system for runoff water, effectively dispersing it away from the property and to an appropriate outlet.

Trench Drain Benefits

Trench drains and channel drains are highly adept at removing large quantities of water over wider expanses of the yard. Therefore, they are ideal solutions for yards with more severe drainage problems or in areas prone to frequent and heavy rainfall.

Trench drains are also very versatile drainage systems because they come in many different sizes, allowing them to be broad enough for city streets to thin enough for pool decks.

Because they assist in preventing slips on wet pavement, they are often installed around commercial buildings to prevent injury. This makes trench drains and channel drains popular choices for restaurants and other businesses.

Trench drains are most often installed across paved surfaces, such as driveways and large expanses of concrete. Surface drains, such as trench drains and channel drains, are often the most reliable solutions for dealing with heavy rainwater.

Contending with System Flaws

While both French drains and trench drains are reliable and trustworthy drainage solutions, at times they might not be the best options for your specific yard situation.

For example, to effectively divert water, French drains need to make accommodations for the natural flow of yard water. Therefore, the French drain must be properly designed and installed for the slopes in your yard to accommodate water at its highest and lowest points.

French drains also have to deal with the potential issue of root intrusion, which is something to consider.

On the other hand, trench drains and channel drains are surface drain solutions that don’t directly deal with soil saturation, but rather focus on runoff water. Therefore, if your goal is preventing basement flooding, French drains are likely a better drainage system solution.

Related: Yard Drainage Frequently Asked Questions

Final Conclusions

French drains and trench drains are both enormously popular and effective yard drainage solutions. It is important to remember that while French drains and trench drains might seem similar at first, they are structured for dealing with different areas of water intrusion. Therefore, when it comes to deciding which type of drainage system to install, the “best” drainage choice depends on the specific needs of your yard.

Your current drainage system failures coupled with the climate and amount of rainfall are all factors that contribute to selecting the right drainage system. Contacting a professional yard contractor will allow your yard and home to be professionally evaluated to assist in determining which drainage solution will best meet your specific needs.

Related: Yard Drainage Problems

Are you ready to put a permanent stop to your drainage problems?

At Yard Drainage Los Angeles, we have the industry experience and expertise needed to deliver top of the line drainage system repairs and installations. Our team of highly skilled workers is ready to work with you to determine the ideal solution for your yard drainage. We’re able to install any drainage system on the market to guarantee the drainage success of your property. Call today to book your complimentary property inspection so that we can share our evaluation!

Call Yard Drainage Los Angeles today to book your Free yard inspection for homeowners!