What does a French drain cost?

January 22, 2013

What does a French drain cost?

The two questions I get asked the most frequently are; "What is a French Drain?" followed by; "How much does a French Drain Cost?"

There are different types of French Drains. Just as there are different contractors, there are different ways to do the same job. The French Drain cost from a contractor who does a shallow channel will vary from the French Drain cost of a contractor who does a deep channel system. They are both French Drains but there is quite a difference between the two. The deep channel French Drain relieves more hydrostatic pressure from beneath the floor than a shallow system.

Having a French Drain and sump pump installed in your basement is a construction job going on inside your house. You have your basement with a lot of your belongings in it, so there is a lot of prep work that needs to happen before the construction begins. The perimeter of the basement floor must be cleared to a minimum of five feet from the wall. The walls must be cleared to the bare foundation to a minimum height of two feet. If you do all this prep work yourself it will result in savings for you.

What is a French Drain?


  • First we do prep work; we move your stuff and cover it with plastic and lay tarps across the floor.
  1. The inside perimeter of the floor is cut approximately one foot from the wall. A deep channel trench is excavated and pitched.
  2. Where possible, the lowest course of block is tapped and bled (weep holes) in order to drain the walls.
  3. Fully slotted, non-biodegradable, High Density polyethylene (HDPE)drainage pipe to deliver the water to the sump is installed.
  4. To discharge the water, we will install a 3,000 GPH submersible pump* in a covered polyethylene liner.
  5. Polydrain wallboard is installed over the bottom of the wall and over the entire trench in the basement.
  6. The wallboard and drainage pipe are covered over with gravel.
  7. The basement floor is re-cemented to its original level.

*Note: Basement perimeter of < 124’ = 1 sump pump; 125’-249’= 2 sump pumps.

  • Next we do the clean-up work; we remove the plastic and sweep the floor broom clean while removing all debris from your property.

How much does a French Drain Cost?

The French Drain cost depends on the size of your basement. It is calculated by the linear feet around the perimeter of the basement. So, if your basement is 36’ wide and 24’ long, your perimeter footage would be 120’ [36+24+36+24=120]

A-1 Basement Solutions average French Drain cost for a house with a:

  • 100 foot perimeter basement (25’x25’) is about $6,000 including 1 Sump Pump
  • 130 foot perimeter basement (30’x35’) is about $7,000 including 2 Sump Pumps
  • 150 foot perimeter basement (40’x35’) is about $8,000 including 2 Sump Pumps
  • 180 foot perimeter basement (40’x45’) is about $9,000 including 2 Sump Pumps
  • 200 foot perimeter basement (50’x50’) is about $10,000 including 2 Sump Pump.

These prices are current (February 19, 2012) and are subject to change in the future.

The numbers are a guideline for you to use. For example; if your house has a 140’ perimeter you can figure the cost to be between $7,000 and $8,000 with 2 sump pumps.

The French Drain is covered by our Lifetime Transferable Guarantee. We guarantee the floor and walls against water seepage for as long as the house stands (provided the Guarantee is transferred within the allotted time and the transfer fee is paid).

Posted by Sump Pump, Basement Waterproofing NJ, basement, french drains, French Drain, Basement Water, Waterproofing Solutions, basement waterproofing

Doug Lynch

Written by Doug Lynch

Doug Lynch, of Westfield, NJ is a Certified Waterproofing Specialist, Certified Mold Inspector, Certified Mold Remediation Expert, EPA Indoor AirPlus Ally, EPA Lead Safe Certified as well as member of Indoor Air Quality Association, Basement Health Association, North Central Jersey Association of Realtors, Coldwell Banker Concierge Services.

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