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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Ok, recently had my gutters and downspouts redone and am looking to get rid of the ugly black flex drain tubing that sits on top of the dirt from the downspouts. This sounds like a good day's work for myself.

I have a good idea what I need to do, but just wanted to plan everything out beforehand. The plan is to use 2 4" PVC drain pipes (one for each downspout) buried just below grade that run about 24-28' towards the back of the yard and have it dump to the surface there. But, a few questions I had like what thickness pvc would be fine, schedule 40 or even 35? I wasn't sure how to handle the drain, but it seems like digging a ditch 2'+ deep at the end of the run, filling it w/ gravel, and installing a T and a pop up or even just grate isn't such a bad idea. Like in this video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kFtBTDLqfeQ

Is this the proper way to install a buried gutter drain? I was originally thinking of installing it w/o the ditch full of gravel, but that would allow water to sit in the pipe at all times which sounds like a bad idea. Any thoughts or suggestions? I've attached an old picture of the backyard for reference. You can see the downspouts on the sides of the house. Thanks!
 

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I would just use non-perforated drainage tile for a while as it gets away from the home (12'), then switch to perforated after that. Once you get some good turf growing near the drain, you won't have to worry about anything.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Cleveman,

Thanks for your input. Can I ask why you'd recommend drainage tile vs. pvc? Anyone I've asked recommends pvc over drainage tile. Oh ya, I forgot to mention in my original post that I was planning on installing cleanouts (45 degree angle Y tube w/ a cap on it) before the pvc went into the ground by the downspouts. I realize it might be a little overkill, but the added cost and work is really minimal. The picture I posted is old, but there is currently a deck that takes up almost the entire backyard now. Having the drain end towards the very end of the yard would get it a few feet past the deck, and I wouldn't want to use perforated drainage tile for the last few feet to avoid the deck footings getting soaked. The plan in the spring is to install a patio for most of the back yard, and only leave little grass beyond that. That's why I want to bury the drain.

Here's a picture while the deck was under construction from the opposite side, but it gives a better idea of what I'm working with. The deck stairs/landing goes out ~20' from the house, and the fence is about 7-8' beyond that.
 

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In my neck of the woods it's almost always done with drain tile like cleveman said. Extended mine some 3 years ago this way over 50' two different runs, no problems. I did however do the trenching in the spring after a good rain to make it easy as possible.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Donethat,

I understand why you'd use regular drain tile if you have a lot more space and soil for the water to be absorbed into.. If I had a bigger backyard using perforated drain tile past a certain point would make a lot of sense, but with a patio and little actual grass, I want to get the water to the end of the property and have it dump back there. As it is, the area under the deck turns into a mud pit when it rains..
 

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You can certainly use schedule 40 pvc if you like. I think it will in fact be more heavy duty.

I think we use the flex drainage tile because it is less expensive, flexible (curves), and there always seems to be some lying around. It is also easy to cut the ends off later (shorter).
 

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Sorry, I'm just not following why you can't use non-perforated for the entire run. Don't think there is anything wrong with doing pvc, just a bit more cost and effort in my mind.

I have one section of mine done with pvc sch 40 because it was running thru and under a large section of concrete driveway. We just cut the end at a 45 angle and let it spill on the ground.

Anyway sounds like you are on the right path and either approach works fine. Just wanted to let you know drain tile is an acceptable option to many.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the opinions guys. I understand I CAN use non-perforated for the entire run, it's just I was leaning towards pvc because of the extra durability and the fact that it can be snaked if need be. It might be a bit overkill, but I tend to err on the side of overdone. I like the idea of never having to redo it or worry about it. The material cost difference is going to be probably ~$60 or so, and that seems like a drop in the bucket all things considered, especially if I'm doing it all myself so free labor. Thanks!
 

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Thanks for the opinions guys. I understand I CAN use non-perforated for the entire run, it's just I was leaning towards pvc because of the extra durability and the fact that it can be snaked if need be. It might be a bit overkill, but I tend to err on the side of overdone. I like the idea of never having to redo it or worry about it. The material cost difference is going to be probably ~$60 or so, and that seems like a drop in the bucket all things considered, especially if I'm doing it all myself so free labor. Thanks!
Ayuh,... It appears to me, that you don't clearly understand how drainage plastic flex tiles work...
I understand why you'd use regular drain tile if you have a lot more space and soil for the water to be absorbed into.. If I had a bigger backyard using perforated drain tile past a certain point would make a lot of sense, but with a patio and little actual grass, I want to get the water to the end of the property and have it dump back there. As it is, the area under the deck turns into a mud pit when it rains..
It doesn't so much disperse the water over the area it runs through, but Drains that area to the downhill end of the tile/ tube...

Water seeps Into the tile, 'n flows away...
Provided of course, there's reasonable pitch along it's full length, it'll add No water anywhere, but at the open lower end...

The heaviest traffic yer gonna get is Foot traffic,...
I'd go with the flex tile, 'bout a foot, 'n a half down, back-fill the trench with leach stone to within a couple inches, mound it up slightly(for settlement) with top dirt, 'n seed it...
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Bondo,

It sounds like you're describing more of a french drain rather than just a downspout drain..? You're talking about using perforated drain tile where I'm just talking about using non-perforated at this point. I'm not interested in having water seep into the drain tile from surrounding soil, which is why I wanted to use PVC. I'm just concerned with dumping the downspout water. If all I'm doing is dumping downspout water, would I really need to backfill the trench with stone instead of just dirt? I wouldn't think so.

I realize now perforated drain tile probably does little to nothing in terms of draining water into the surrounding soil (which is why it's used for french drains), but either way that seems like a moot point for what I'm trying to do.
 

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Bondo,

It sounds like you're describing more of a french drain rather than just a downspout drain..? You're talking about using perforated drain tile where I'm just talking about using non-perforated at this point. I'm not interested in having water seep into the drain tile from surrounding soil, which is why I wanted to use PVC. I'm just concerned with dumping the downspout water. If all I'm doing is dumping downspout water, would I really need to backfill the trench with stone instead of just dirt? I wouldn't think so.

I realize now perforated drain tile probably does little to nothing in terms of draining water into the surrounding soil (which is why it's used for french drains), but either way that seems like a moot point for what I'm trying to do.
Ok, so skip the stone, 'n refer to the Cost factor....

Perforated drain tile is cheap, 'n snakeable if lain properly...

Alota easier to work with too...
 

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I'd go with you gut on this one and simply use the PVC, either sch. 40 or 35, and never worry about repairing it. If you do decide to go with corrugated, you're going to have to bed plenty of stone around it, meaning you're going to have to dig even deeper, and you'll have the additional cost of the extra stone. Not to mention, you probably need to drain it "to daylight, so the additional depth may not allow that. Also, if you don't get at least 8-10" of decent soil over the stone, every short dry spell in Summer will result in yellow grass over your trench. Ask me how I know............:laughing:
 

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I agree with your post. Use Sched.40. You can keep better grade using a simple level so no water will be trappped and it will drain fast and completely.
Snaking corregated drain tile is NOT simple and may ruin the tile. Sched. 35 or 40, no problem. Spend the extra and put in the best solution. You must have sufficient slope such that draining the intermediate area is not a problem. If not you can install an intermediate drop box.
 

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I vote PVC. I have corrugated non-perf running under my lawn. Several are now clogged up with 20 years of decomposed leaves and who-knows-what else. The ridges trap all that crud.
 

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Here are some before and after pictures of what I did. In the third picture, the red paver blocks are not there to cover the drain as the drain was filled in, they were temp put there to get them out of the way, and the soffit underneath the nook is pulled down for electrical wiring as the project was still under construction at the time. This worked great for me as now any water coming down the spouts gets directed underneath my deck and out to the side yard where it is lower lying ground.
 

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At least for the first 12 feet of run away from the house the pipe should be non-perforated. It does not matter whether the pipe is surrounded by gravel or sand or dirt.

For the entire run the pipe should slope downhill away from the house.

Whatever is at the far end must accept and dissipate the water so it can never back up to the house. If water sits in the pipe then your system is not properly constructed.
 

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Check at Lowes or Home Depot for a storm water containment system, works on the same premise as a dry well. And as far as the underside of your deck being a mud pit when it rains, there is a product called underdeck basically it's gutter system installed under your deck.
 

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I have been in the landscaping trade now going on 13the years and have seen underground downspout drains installed with both drain tile and pvc pipe.
I choose to use pvc pipe.
I , in my area of Wisconsin, don't use pop up emitters though as they hold water and will freeze possibly cracking your pipe.
You can get around this by drilling a small hole in the 90° bend at the base and digging a small vertical french drain under your weep hole.
I prefer to daylight all my drains if possible, but when I can't I drill a small weep hole.
A straight daylit pipe also has less chance to plug from leaves and debris.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
This is an old thread but just thought I'd say thanks to everyone. I got this completed over the summer and it's working like a charm so far. Have two gutters that goto two 4" PVC pipes.. then they goto a Y to one 4" PVC (one 4" pvc is plenty actually as it's a townhouse) and that 4" pvc dumps just past my fence.

Unfortunately I couldn't easily daylight the drain (while keeping the pitch) so it sits underground and I used a pop up drain. I have the 4" PVC goto a T that sits like this: -| that's about 8" underground. I dug a small trench, filled it with gravel and wrapped it with landscape fabric, and set the bottom part of the T on it. The other end of the T goes to a pop up emitter. The trench below helps the water drain out of the pipe (although on heavy downpours it can stay full for a little while, no big deal I guess). Thanks everyone for the help!
 
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