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Why PVC pipe is a good product?

With any new home you should always use 4” PVC pipe to drain the water from around the basement. New home builders used to use the black drain tile around new homes. And I think there are a lot of wet basements around too.

Water proof the basement wall before you install the drain pipe. I use the black tar and roll it on with a paint roller. Snap a chalk line at the height you want to water proof to, you will have a nice straight black line around the basement wall.

Do not lay the pipe on top of the footing course. I know it is easier this way but it won’t drain properly there. The pipe must be installed level of the footing course.

The pipe has 3/4 holes in it about 1/3 of the way up the pipe. Installed properly the lettering on the pipe must be top center. Install the PVC pipe level all the way around the basement wall. If you want to run it down hill a little, OK, but remember that when your ends meet at the drain corner they must connect. That is why I recommend that the PVC pipe be installed level.

There is nothing wrong with keeping the pipe level. When you get to the drain corner you are sure the pipes will connect.

Make sure your PVC pipe connects at the corner closest to a ditch. I never glue the joints! I just make sure they are connected all the way. An easy way to connect PVC pipe so you don’t break it is to use a board and a hammer. Lay your first piece of pipe by the footing, dump 1 inch clear drain rock on the pipe to hold it in place.

Put about a foot of drain rock over the pipe and leave the ends showing. I lay a piece of plywood on the bank and let the drain rock slide down onto the PVC pipe. You will find your drain rock will go a lot further by not wasting any. Now that you have the first piece of pipe secured, install another piece. When the connection is made, take the board and place it at the end of the pipe and use the hammer to drive the pipes together.

Don’t forget to put the lettering top center before you drive them together. You can use your foot but it sure is hard on boots. Continue on around the basement back filling with 1 inch clear rock. When you get to the corner connect the PVC pipe together and continue on out to the ditch.

To the right is a picture of the most common PVC fittings used. The numbers on the fittings are the degrees for which they bend. There is also a fitting not showed in picture that is called a Y-T. These fittings are used in situations where you would have two septic lines coming from two different buildings. The Y-T keeps the sewage or water flowing in a straight a line as possible. Before gluing, make sure the joints are dry and free of dirt. When the connection is made, you have about three seconds to put your fitting in place. The joints cannot be taken apart after the connection is made. Very Important! Never inhale the PVC glue for it is extremely harmful to your health. Never let children play this product.

If the ground is dry to the ditch you can use pipe with no holes in it and you don’t need to use drain rock either. If you do use drain pipe you should use some drain rock over the pipe so the fine dirt can’t get in the holes. You are now ready to back fill the rest of the basement.

This is one project that needs to be done with care! A lot of new homes have water in the basement because they weren’t drained properly. I would never use the black perforated drain tile around a basement wall. This stuff plugs up and then the water can’t get away.

Why PVC pipe is a good product?

When you are installing the PVC pipe around the basement, install Ts at the corners where the eves trough will drain. Install the Ts at the ends closest to the drain. The least distance the water has to travel the better. Drop pipe down on the Ts and secure them with something until the basement is back filled. Bring the PVC pipe up to the top of the wall.  When the eves trough is in place, connect the drain from the trough to the top of the PVC pipe. There are round plastic caps for the pipe. The drain pipe from the eves trough is square. Cut a hole the size of the trough drain in the round cap and hook them together. That is it for the basement wall.

When you have the pipe installed and the drain rock in place you can backfill the rest of the basement wall. I use a pit run gravel, which has perfect drainage. The water will travel swiftly to the pipe and drain away to the ditch.