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French Drain Services of Tacoma

Mike French of French Drain Services of Tacoma, on why you should call us when you have a water problem in your yard, or along your foundation, outbuilding, or retaining wall…

“We at French Drain Services have been providing professional drainage solutions to homeowners throughout the Tacoma, Pierce County, and Western Washington State region for nearly 30 years. If you have a wet basement, standing water in your yard, or any other drainage related issues, and you would like the problem fixed right, combined with really friendly service, call french drain today at 253-358-8338. We want and appreciate your business!”

Installation of French Drains and More

Water travels by the easiest route. So, water will always flow downhill. That’s how a French Drain works. French drains are made of a gravel filled slightly sloped trench that uses a pipe to divert water away from your home. The trench becomes the easiest route and the pipe allows the water to flow downhill. The water travels through the pipe and empties a safe distance from your home.

Sump Pumps, Catch Basins, Grading

French drainage system

A diagram of a French drainage system.

There are lots of drainage solution services we provide to Tacoma area residents. Here are just a few:

  • Channel Drains and French Drains
  • Curtain Drains and Pop-up Emitters
  • Round-grate Drains
  • Dry Wells and Catch Basins
  • Professional soil grading
  • Sump Pumps
  • Atrium Grates and More!
Tacoma WA

We’re proud to be a Tacoma based business.

Yard Drainage Solutions

Wet Basement Drainage Systems


Many people have questions about how to trouble-shoot their Tacoma, Washington wet basement issues. For a basement problem, you’ll need a footing drain, which is a deep French drain. This drain will run around your home’s perimeter at the level of the footing and it will intercept water before it can enter your basement.

This type of drain is easy to install if done while the house is under construction. This can be more difficult, and expensive to install with an existing structure. If the basement walls are tall, you may have to dig deep in order to get to the footing. Also, landscaping, walkways, and decks will have to be removed in order to install the drains, which will add to the cost.

If the slope is not adequate for the drain to work properly, you may need to pipe the water to a basin located in the basement and use a sump pump to lift the water and send it to the storm drain.

You can also install an interior French drain. This drain will intercept the water when it enters the basement. This is the best way to maintain a dry basement.

However, if the basement is finished, the interior walls will need to be removed in order to install the system. Since the water would be damaging your basement anyway, this should not be an issue.

A channel needs to be cut around the perimeter of the basement floor. The concrete needs to be chipped out. Then perforated pipes need to be installed. The water would be collected in the pipe and flow into a collection tank which is sunken into the floor. A sump pump will send the water into the storm drain or the yard.

You can patch the channel with a thin layer of concrete although a small gap needs to remain near the edge, in order to catch water that may leak down the wall.

Outdoor Drainage


If surface water is an issue, you can install an underground drainage system called a curtain drain, which is a shallow French drain. A curtain drain would extend across your property horizontally, uphill from the area that needs drying out. The water is intercepted and channeled to another area before it can reach the soggy area.

A curtain drain does not need to be deep. Commonly this drain is about 2 feet deep and 1.5 feet across. Use solid pipe in areas where the drain will pass through shrubs or trees. Their roots can damage the perforated pipes traditionally used in a curtain drain, which can lead the drain to clog.

Yard Drainage For Retaining Walls


A French drain should be placed behind the first course of blocks or stones in your retaining wall.

If the drain is not installed in that position, the water may build up behind the wall. As the water moves down the hill over time, it can compromise the wall. The French drain pipe need to rest on the same concrete footing or gravel base as the wall.

In order to protect your drain from silt, drape a landscape cloth over the footing or base and up the slope. Then, add the pipe and drain gravel. You should also fold the cloth over the top of the gravel, near the top of the wall and then top it with several inches of soil.

Water Damage Equipment
Serving Western Washington State