DIY Network

Building a Deck

How to Install a Track Drain System

The goal is to dig the trench at a slight pitch, or angle, to allow gravity to pull the water along the pipes and out the clear out.

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  • Time


  • Price Range

    $100 - $250

  • Difficulty



Step 1: Dig for the Drain

Figure out the collection spot of the water and begin to dig there for the modular track draining system. Dig a trench about 12" deep at the high end and then work your way down on a gradual slope. When you get to the sprinkler heads, be very careful not to damage them or the existing irrigation lines. If there are bricks or anything on top of the dirt where the water collects, remove those as well.

Step 2: Lay the Drain in Place

The modular draining system might look confusing to set up, but it is meant to be modified to the needs of the backyard being drained, like maneuvering around a corner.

The PVC drain is open on both ends, so first take a cover and cover one of the ends of the drain by snapping it into place. On the other end, install a coupler at a 90-degree angle when you get to a corner.

After installing all of the correct parts, lay it in place to make sure it fits and is on the right ground level. It needs to be high on the end from where the water drains so that the water will flow through properly. Next wedge the irrigation system (if necessary) beside the freshly laid track.

Continue digging a trench, then install the drain system, installing couplers between each piece to connect them together. Most track drain components can be purchased at your local home center. Put tape over the couplers to keep the loose dirt out of the draining system.

Step 3: Install ABS Pipes

Acrylonitrile-Butadiene-Styrene (ABS) pipes are sometimes used for sewer lines. In order to install the ABS pipes for dispersing the drainage, cut a short piece of the ABS pipe and install a joint to one end of it, then connect the aforementioned draining system (PVC pipe) to the other end of the ABS pipe piece. Next, add a longer ABS pipe to the opposite end of the joint (the end without the PVC attached).

Finally connect all the pieces to whatever length the backyard dispersing system needs to be, add a 90-degree joint and install the drain cover at the end of the pipe which extends up from the ground. Before moving on to the gravel, backfill the trench with the dirt dug up.

Step 4: Add Edging and Gravel

Next, install metal edging to create a border for the gravel to lie on top of the landscape paper. Remove the tape that was protecting the drain holes before laying down the landscaping paper in between the edge of the concrete patio and the metal edging, fully covering the drain system. Finally, add gravel on top of the landscaping paper.