Do French Drip Sinks Need An Exhaust?
The first thing you have to decide is whether your french drain needs an exhaust or not. If it does, then you will need to install one. If it doesn’t, then you don’t need to worry about it because there are many other solutions out there which are much cheaper than installing an expensive exhaust system.
If your drain doesn’t require an exhaust, then you may still want to consider installing one. You could even get rid of the drain altogether and just use a septic tank instead. However, if you choose to go with an exhaust system, then here are some things to keep in mind:
You will need to pay extra for the installation of the piping. Some systems come with a pre-installed pipe so you won’t have to spend any money at all.
Some pipes are made of stainless steel while others are made of plastic. Plastic pipes tend to leak more easily and they can break down over time causing them to clog up. Stainless steel pipes last longer and aren’t prone to breaking down.
It’s best to get a drain that comes with a pipe that fits into the wall rather than having to buy one separately. Most pipes that come with the french drain are usually about 5 feet long so if you need to go further you will have to buy one separately. Another thing to consider is the diameter of the pipe.
Most drains come with a 1 1/2 inch pipe, which should be fine for most people. If you want to go cheaper then you could also install a 1 1/2 inch PVC pipe which is cheaper but it also tends to leak more and has a shorter lifespan. Most pipes are usually sold separately to encourage you to buy a complete system rather than making your own arrangements.
There are different types of exhaust pipes for the outside
Wall Mounted: consists of a vertical pipe that is mounted to the wall or roof. Roof Mounted: just as it sounds, the pipe is mounted on top of the roof so all gasses are released directly upwards. Depending on the altitude this may not be enough to prevent odors from entering into the house.
Understand How It Works
Most french drains work by gravity. This means water flows from the area that needs to be drained into a pipe and out of the house. The pipe then takes the water far away from your home so it doesn’t cause any damage.
During heavy rainstorms, the water will start to back up but it will only rise to a certain level and then stop. This is because the water in the pipe flows out into the main drainpipe at some point. Perimeter or Bank Mounted: installed along the perimeter of your property it takes advantage of the natural topographical slope of the land to allow for more effective release of gases. The reason it doesn’t back up all the way to your house is because there is a vacuum underneath the drainpipe that sucks everything down.
Drain pipes can get clogged when foreign objects such as tree roots start growing in them or when trash gets stacked up inside. In order to prevent this from happening you should keep the area surrounding your pipe clear of any obstructions and make sure there are no holes in the pipe itself. It consists of a French Drain and a series of dry wells.
The dry wells are installed in the ground along the perimeter of your home. The bottoms of the wells are at or near the bottom of your property’s slope. Their heights above grade are such that when they are filled with water, gravity will cause the water to flow into the French drain.
Does It Have Any Other Benefits?
There are many types of foundation repair systems on the market but most of them fall into one of two categories;
Retaining Wall Systems: These are designed to stabilize your property from the top-down. They work by holding the soil around your home in place. Retaining walls are usually made from steel, wood or stone and are very expensive to have installed.
Pier Systems: Instead of building retaining walls from the top down these systems build them from the ground up. You can do this yourself or hire a plumber to do it for you.
Another important thing to keep in mind is that your pipe needs a way for the water to flow into it or else it will just back up and flood your house. Most of the time, gravity takes care of this but sometimes you may need to install an opening in your wall or floor to provide the drain with a connection to a lower area such as a foundation drain. This is most common in the kitchen where a garbage disposal can cause significant back-up problems.
If your home has a sump pump installed then you don’t need to worry about this because the pump will take care of everything for you.
What Else Do I Need To Consider?
A sump pump is not enough to keep water from damaging the inside of your home, in many cases you will also need to install an interior drain system or hydrostatic valve. This consists of an opening in your lowest room (bathroom, laundry room or basement) where the drainpipe can be connected to a system of pipes that carry the water outside. You will also need to have one or more sumps installed.
These are nothing more than large open pits where water can collect and then drain away slowly. The pit should be as big around as a telephone pole is tall and at least three feet deep.
If you want to get really technical then you can even install a pressure-activated switch that will turn off the sump pump when the water in the pit has drained below a certain level. This will prevent your pump from running non-stop during an extended rainy period.
Do I Really Need To Do This?
If you are living in your home during a period of above average rainfall then the answer is Yes. If you have to ask “why” then you probably shouldn’t be in the house in the first place. If you are visiting someone else’s home then the answer is still Yes unless you don’t ever plan to take a bath or shower while you are there.
If you are still not convinced then just go back and re-read some of the information above.
What Else Can I Do To Protect My Property?
Assuming that you are going to take the necessary steps to protect your house and property from water damage, here are some other things you can do;
Have your home and its important contents (especially those near the lowest points in the house) photographed from all angles. Record the serial numbers of expensive electrical devices such as your TV, computer, microwave and stereo. Keep a record of their locations (such as in a safe) along with copies of the photographs.
Make sure you do this before the insurance company sends someone out to evaluate the damage.
Insist that your homeowners policy automatically includes flood insurance. Even if you don’t live in a flood plain, water can still get into your basement and cause a lot of damage.
Take photos or videos of your house before and after the flood.
Learn how to turn off your main electricity and water valves in case you need to do it in the dark.
Doors and windows can allow a lot of water to get inside if they aren’t properly sealed. Install strong vertical metal blinds that seal airtight in all the doors and windows that you want to keep water out of.
Aim a powerful fan at an open window and turn it on high speed just before the storm arrives. The wind generated by the fan will push most of the rain outside. Remember to close the window before the wind blows everything off your kitchen counters!
Sources & references used in this article:
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