Everything you need to know about weeping tile

What is Weeping Tile?

Weeping tile is a type of drainage system used to redirect water away from your home. It is a 4-inch porous pipe that is installed surrounding the exterior of your home’s foundation. Also known as the french drain, named after American lawyer and agriculturalist Henry Flagg French. This system prevents any groundwater pressure from creating cracks in the concrete foundation of your home and cause basement flooding,

How Does Weeping Tile Work?

The weeping tile pipe is placed hole side up either in a dug-out trench around the perimeter of the home’s foundation, or it is placed inside the home under the basement floor. Whenever there is rainfall or snowmelt, the groundwater rises and it flows through the holes into the pipe. The water is then carried towards the homes sewage pipe where it leaves the home through the central sewer system. If the weeping tire is installed inside the home the water goes directly to a sump pump and is pumped away.

Why are weeping tiles important?

Weeping tile is important because without them your home’s foundation would be sitting in water! Weeping tiles are designed to keep large amounts of groundwater from applying too much pressure on your home’s foundation, without it, it can cause your foundation to crack, potentially flooding your basement. Weeping tiles will also reduce the amount of still water that remains on your lawn or around your house after a rainfall.

Types of Weeping Tile

There are two main types of weeping tile systems – exterior and interior.

Exterior:Exterior weeping tile is placed around the perimeter surrounding the home’s foundation. This system helps manage groundwater before it can get into your home.

Interior: Interior weeping tile is placed inside the home under the basement. This system is similar to the exterior system, any groundwater that manages to enter the home will be picked up by the weeping tile and carried over to a sump pit. When the water in the sump pit reaches a certain level, the sump pump will turn on and pump the water away from the home. Interior weeping tile is often used when the exterior weeping tile system has failed.

Weeping Tile Installation Process:

Installing weeping tile on your own is a very tedious task, It is recommended to contact professional help.


Step 1: Dig a trench

Dig a 1-foot by 1-foot trench around the perimeter of the home’s foundation. The trench should slope 1-foot for every eight feet, this way the water flows downwards away from the home.

Step 2: Pour the gravel

Pour about 2-4 inches of gravels at the bottom of the trench. The gravel must be granite or river gravel, less than an inch in size. The gravel will act as a natural filter that will protect the pipe from clogging with dirt and mud, only letting water to enter the pipe.

Step 3: Place the pipe

Place a PVC pipe with predrilled holes on top of the gravel, covering the pipe with landscape fabric can help prevent any roots or obstructions from affecting the pipe. Installing a clean-out joint will help with cleaning the pipe and future maintenance.

Step 4: Fill up the trench

Once the pipe is placed properly in the trench, the trench can now be filled up once again. Place a layer of gravel or a combination of gravel and sand on top of the pipe. Next for the remaining few inches of the trench, you can fill it up with dirt, and then finally sod to completely conceal the trench.


Step 1: Cut the concrete floor and Pour the Gravel

Cut through the concrete floor using a circular saw with a concrete blade, Cut a 12-inch wide trench around the perimeter of the basement after the footer. Dig until you have reached the gravel underneath the concrete slab, the trench should be 1 to 2 feet deep. Next, pour enough washed gravel to fill the bottom of the trench.

Step 2: Lay the Pipe

Place a PVC pipe with predrilled holes on top of the gravel, make sure the holes are facing up.

Step 3: Fill the trench and replace the concrete Floor

Once the pipe is laid and connected to the sump pump, fill in the trench with gravel, but leave some space for concrete. Let the gravel settle overnight and then lay the new concrete over the gravel, smooth out the concrete and let it dry.


To make sure your weeping tile lasts and works properly, it is important to perform regular plumbing checks and maintenance.

  • Make sure that your sump pump is working properly, it is recommended to add a battery backup in the case that the power goes out.
  • If there is any indication of plumbing issues, such as slow draining sinks or tubs, make sure to have it checked out by a plumber.
  • Check the perimeter of your home for spongy soil or pooling water
  • Clean any leaves or debris from the gutters

It is important to maintain the weeping tile to prevent flooding, small concerns can become big problems, address any concerns as soon as you have them.

In Conclusions

Installing weeping tile in your home can be very beneficial and help prevent flooding especially if you live in an area with lots of rainfall or snowmelt. Installation can be tedious and expensive, however, it is definitely worth the investment.

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