Alternatives To French Drains


Lawn drainage is very much important to keep your house dry and protected. It is one of the most important concerns for many people. Thus many people have French drain installed to drain standing water from the lawn before it seeps into the house. This also helps to prevent soil erosion and water logging problems. French drains are introduced more than 40 years ago and work really great. Though there are many homeowners who prefer to use some alternatives to this. When choosing your preferred method, be sure to check codes in your area to make sure the method you choose is allowed.

Various Alternate Options

  • Swales: These are also called valleys. It is a shallow area that doesn’t have any pipe but can capture rainwater and redirect it to another place. These swales can be filled with gravels or even can be covered by low grass or vegetation. From the above 3 alternatives provided, swales is the best alternative to French drain. It is normally 12 inches in width and also may vary from one person to another. It is a great option to lead away the water from lower areas. Multiple swales can also be formed in the yard to prevent any erosion or water logged situations around your house. The swales should be made in such a way that it would lead to a ditch or a wooden area that can easily pass on the water.
  • Dry Well or Soak Away: This is a plastic barrel, with holes in the bottom, and an open top. It sits in a hole the ground that catches run off water and helps it soak into the soil. It is also cost effective and you can install as many as you need. So, if you want some excellent drainage system in a low price then this is a great option for you.
  • Terracing: Terracing also looks great in your yard. Terraced areas beautifully decorated with shrubs, flowers and small plants will look beautiful and the same time can divert water from one place to another.

Water logging can cause erosion and also damage your house. If you elect to use one of these flood control methods your lawn will still look great as you add some decoration over the swales, or trenches with flower trees, shrubs etc. You can also place stones and gravels and make it a beautiful decorative area in your yard. So, this drainage system can also turn into a beautiful spot and enhance the beauty of your lawn.