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Thread: Redundant Outdoor Drainage Pipe

  1. #1
    DIY Senior Member Mike50's Avatar
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    Default Redundant Outdoor Drainage Pipe

    This should be a no-brainer nonetheless I'm unsure about this situation.
    My Lot is situated atop a manmade 30 degree slope. Home built in 1977.

    There is a flat area on the street side which needs a little drainage during a heavy rain.
    So..someone installed a black 3 inch subterranean drainage pipe. Because of erosion it's only buried a few inches deep. It is about 45 feet long and empties onto the street.

    An 18 foot section has always bowed up a little and I've been covering it up with dirt/sand (this is desert) a few times a year.

    There is also a redundant 4 inch gray pipe directly parallel to it, layed Im assuming years afterward. Both are plastic material. Obviously more drainage was needed-I'm assuming during a Heavy rain winter.


    Anyway, about 3 or 4 weeks ago the black 3 inch pipe, because of record heat here--bowed up and *out* of the ground. (18 foot section)

    It just popped up.

    It's quite visible and I'd have to pour a small hill of sand on top to conceal it now.

    This is strickly cosmetic. I tested both pipes and they flow just fine.
    The smaller black pipe is in worse condition than the larger gray one.

    Someone just dumped some concrete and rocks on both ends to keep it in the ground. No plumber or contractor would have done this obvious amateur job.

    I can see where my lot would have had much more erosion--(over the years anyway) if it was not there.

    FYI-Neighbors in lower areas and across the street have some fairly serious road erosion issues (only in very heavy rain).
    They have had to replace some small segments of asphalt on occasion.
    But it doesn't affect me as I'm on the hill.

    Eventually something has to be done. Looks pretty bad.
    Because of age it is NOT worth salvaging.

    I don't know if I can safely remove the smaller black pipe or not.
    Heavy winter rain is the concern.
    Last edited by Mike50; 08-12-2006 at 02:34 PM.

  2. #2
    I&C Engineer (mostly WWTP) Lakee911's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike50
    This should be a no-brainer nonetheless I'm unsure about this situation.
    <snip>
    I must have no brain... what are you asking?

  3. #3
    DIY Senior Member Mike50's Avatar
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    Sorry. I don't know how to decide if I can remove the older pipe or not. I want to.
    Im still unclear why there are 2 in the first place.

    Waiting for torrential rain seems stupid. (to see if extra drainage or not)
    Looking for options that include removing it.
    Last edited by Mike50; 08-13-2006 at 06:21 AM.

  4. #4
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    I'm surprised your allowed to just pipe runoff water to dump in the street, but the drainage system you have, even if it is getting rid of the water, is pretty poorly done by your description. I'd look into installing sort of a drainfield. Dig a trench, fill the bottom with drain rock, then pipe with the drain pipe that has holes spaced every foot or so. Since you have sandy soil, this should easily handle the occasional but heavy rain you have. Trench deep enough that everything is buried deep enough to stay put.

  5. #5
    DIY Senior Member Mike50's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Swart
    I'm surprised your allowed to just pipe runoff water to dump in the street, but the drainage system you have, even if it is getting rid of the water, is pretty poorly done by your description. I'd look into installing sort of a drainfield. Dig a trench, fill the bottom with drain rock, then pipe with the drain pipe that has holes spaced every foot or so. Since you have sandy soil, this should easily handle the occasional but heavy rain you have. Trench deep enough that everything is buried deep enough to stay put.
    I know what you mean Gary. It doesn't seem like that would be up to "code".
    And yes, you're correct just about any option is available--because there is no question about soil drainage in the desert.

    It's gray and black pipes that go into the street.
    FYI-This town is designated as a rustic and unincorporated area of San Bernardino county. Few residential streetlights. No curbs or sidewalks. Just sand to asphalt.

    (this is horse country up here)

  6. #6
    I&C Engineer (mostly WWTP) Lakee911's Avatar
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    Drywells are very common. No problem w/ any code.

    Google Drywell

  7. #7

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    Also Google French Drain. Sounds like that's what they were attempting to make. The key to a good FD is the supporting gravel. The pipe only provides a channel for drainage. The gravel keeps debris out of the pipe and allows water to find the pipe.
    (important note: I'm not a pro)

  8. #8
    DIY Senior Member Mike50's Avatar
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    Exclamation

    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Swart
    I'm surprised your allowed to just pipe runoff water to dump in the street, but the drainage system you have, even if it is getting rid of the water, is pretty poorly done by your description. I'd look into installing sort of a drainfield. Dig a trench, fill the bottom with drain rock, then pipe with the drain pipe that has holes spaced every foot or so. Since you have sandy soil, this should easily handle the occasional but heavy rain you have. Trench deep enough that everything is buried deep enough to stay put.
    I missed that post. That sounds like a hell of a good idea--if it works during a heavy rain.


    Quote Originally Posted by prashster
    Also Google French Drain. Sounds like that's what they were attempting to make. The key to a good FD is the supporting gravel. The pipe only provides a channel for drainage. The gravel keeps debris out of the pipe and allows water to find the pipe.
    Makes good sense to me.
    I have a feeling what happened was they had a flood up here and the owner panicked and threw a pipe in the ground only 2 inches deep (!) with a couple bags of cement on both ends to hold it down on the slope. It's taking me years to upgrade a lot of screwy things just like this around here.
    Last edited by Mike50; 08-16-2006 at 08:19 AM.

  9. #9
    Rancher
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    Mike,

    Like you I live in the desert, it is quite common to pipe rain runoff down slopes to where they won't errode the land/dirt. Code? Here in AZ the only statute is what runs onto your property must run off, how you channel it is really up to the homeowner. Your pipe is probably growing out of the ground due to errosion and the fact that in the sun those pipes will get hot and grow.

    Solution, trench in some new drain pipes and do it right this time.

    Rancher

  10. #10
    DIY Senior Member Mike50's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rancher
    Mike,

    Like you I live in the desert, it is quite common to pipe rain runoff down slopes to where they won't errode the land/dirt. Code? Here in AZ the only statute is what runs onto your property must run off, how you channel it is really up to the homeowner. Your pipe is probably growing out of the ground due to errosion and the fact that in the sun those pipes will get hot and grow.

    Solution, trench in some new drain pipes and do it right this time.

    Rancher
    You're right. And I will. I'm going to wait until the first heavy rain so I can see first hand if this much drainage is actually needed now.
    I just need to decide whether to just remove this damn thing before then or not....so I dont have to look at it until the rain comes (if it does at all).

    Mike

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