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Interior and Exterior French Drains

Does your basement feel incredible damp and drippy to the point that it becomes extremely uncomfortable visiting that particular area of your house? For homeowners suffering from clammy and damp basement wall, a French drain or footing drain might just be the solution to your problem. There are two different types of French drain, an interior and exterior one, but what’s the difference?

Interior French Drain

An interior French drain will not be able to prevent water from entering your basement. Rather, what it does is catches all the water that managed to seep into the channels with a little help from gravity. The water is collected on to something called a sump pump; its job is to lead the water outside or into an installed drain line. In order to install this type of French drain, professional installers need to cut and create a channel within basement slabs as well as the perimeter. Then the ground just below the channel is excavated to allow the placement of the perforated drain pipe and sump pump. Finally, the trench is filled with drainage gravel and slabs are patched off with fresh concrete.

Exterior French Drain

Exterior French drain presents the best fool proof solution against wet basements, but it also comes with a hefty price for installation. Since the installation will involve thorough excavation in order to expose footings and foundation walls, it presents an opportunity for the homeowner to apply waterproof coatings to the exterior wall surfaces; this provides an additional layer of protection. When installation takes place, the professional installer digs around the house’s foundation with the help of a backhoe. Waterproofing is applied to the walls of the basement before the exterior French drain system is installed right besides the foundation footing. The final step would be to fill the excavated area with gravel to promote proper drainage.