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Old 02-15-2009, 09:52 AM   #1
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French drain for washer


I want to build a french drain for my washer water. I live in a remote area and own the land in a 50 acre circumference of my home.

The land is mostly red clay under the topsoil. I have access to a back-hoe. I just need some guidelines as far as dimensions, type of rocks, and pipe location in the drain.

The home is 1300' heated and washer is used for 3 adults.

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Old 02-15-2009, 10:01 AM   #2
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French drain for washer


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I want to build a french drain for my washer water. ...
The land is mostly red clay under the topsoil. I have access to a back-hoe. I just need some guidelines as far as dimensions, type of rocks, and pipe location in the drain.
The washing machine should not be draining into an existing or planned French drain that goes around the perimeter of your foundation either inside or outside.

Instead you need a new and separate system, consisting of a pipe going straignt out from your house to a dry well used only for the washing machine and perhaps a laundry sink. Clay soil is usually bad news for dry wells, the water doesn't perk fast.

It's hard to say what size dry well you would need. You may want to get a perk test, the same kind of test done when septic tank systems are installed.

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Last edited by AllanJ; 02-15-2009 at 10:08 AM.
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Old 02-15-2009, 05:01 PM   #3
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French drain for washer


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Instead you need a new and separate system, consisting of a pipe going straignt out from your house to a dry well used only for the washing machine and perhaps a laundry sink. Clay soil is usually bad news for dry wells, the water doesn't perk fast.
Ayuh,.. And make sure it's not near your Well, or existing septic....Preferably downhill away...
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Old 02-16-2009, 06:29 AM   #4
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French drain for washer


Find an area along the slope on your side of the boundary where excavation would be easiest for your French drain (i.e., free of obstructions). Trench lines should be plotted out before you begin building a French drains. You need to create your own mini-slope to carry the water down to its destination. A grade of 1% (i.e., a drop of 1 foot for every 100 feet in length) is often recommended for French drains; others advise a drop of 6" for every 100'. Getting the water to go where you wish is essential for improving yard drainage; the grade will facilitate your efforts.
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Old 02-16-2009, 08:47 AM   #5
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French drain for washer


The line is already ran, plotting straight behind the house at a good slope. My septic system is closed and will not be part of the washer drain line. The distance will be app. 40' from the edge of the house. Now for a general idea of size of the "hole". Just to throw this out there- how about 3'W X 6'L X 5'D. I fill with what- pea gravel or just "driveway" type gravel? I get the latter free. I fill with whatever. lay the pipe (with holes facing down) on top of the gravel, and cover that with some type of barrier fabric. My county used to require a fill line be covered w/ "tar" paper before covering w/ dirt. Would covering the drain w/ 1' of topsoil be sufficient? As I stated before- I have access to a back-hoe so building the drain bigger is not a problem.
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Old 02-16-2009, 09:16 AM   #6
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French drain for washer


Crewguy,
I am also interested in doing this at my 5 acre plot. Do you think 6' long is long enough??? I would think it would need to be longer, but I don't have anything to base that on.
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Old 02-16-2009, 09:35 AM   #7
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French drain for washer


How deep is the frost line where you live? A septic line wont freeze too easy,,,a washer water line will. If you have machinery and free gravel,,,why not size it twice or three times as big as it should be,just in case. The clay soils WILL soap up and perk less over time. BIGGER is better here.

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