How Much Does a Drainage System Cost?

Typical Range:

$2,100 - $6,465

Find out how much your project will cost.

Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 1,833 HomeAdvisor members. Embed this data

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  • Homeowners use HomeAdvisor to find pros for home projects.
  • When their projects are done, they fill out a short cost survey.
  • We compile the data and report costs back to you.

Updated September 2, 2022

Reviewed by Jeff Botelho, Licensed Journeyman Plumber.

Written by HomeAdvisor.

Cost to Install Drainage Systems

Installing drainage runs most homeowners between $2,100 and $6,465 with an average cost of $4,129. Small, simpler solutions could be as low as $500 and more complicated projects could get as expensive as $18,000.

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National Average $4,129
Typical Range $2,100 - $6,465
Low End - High End $800 - $13,000

Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 1,833 HomeAdvisor members.

Drainage System Cost by Type

Drainage systems include French drain styles, which use a perforated pipe buried in a gravel-filled trench. Some surface level drains use variations on this method with metal and plastic channels. Other parts of the system include dry wells, sump pumps, downspout connections, window well drainage, and foundation drains.

Type Cost*
French $1,000 – $10,000 per 100 linear feet
Trench / Channel $3,000 – $9,000 per 100 linear feet
Underground Downspouts $200 – $2,000 per downspout
Concrete Catch Basin/Storm $2,000 – $5,000 per basin
Plastic Catch Basin $200 – $500 per drain

*Includes both labor and materials.

Drainage System Installation Cost

In order to have drainage in your yard, you may need to install a culvert. Culvert pipes carry excess water away from your home, reducing flooding and other moisture-related risks.

Culvert installation costs $1,500 to $5,000 per entrance or road. Contact your local highway department or department of transportation for rules and regulations on culvert installation. In some places, you’ll need oversight from the roads or highway department. However, your project may not require culvert installation and, instead, other drainage system installation. 

Concrete Catch Basin

A concrete catch basin costs $2,000 to $5,000 for installation. That price includes all connections and complete installation. You won’t often find a catch basin on residential property newer than 1960. On residential properties, it was used to separate contamination in the sewer systems. You may need one of these only if you’re in a community with a single pipe sewer system. Double systems, one for sewage and one for stormwater, don’t require a catch basin.

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Plastic Catch Basin

You’ll spend $200 to $500 per drain for plastic catch basins. These basins, like their concrete relatives, work to separate out contaminants, but at your downspouts. They sit below a downspout, separating leaves and large debris while allowing water to flow in and to a storm sewer system or dry well.

Under Deck Drainage System

Putting drainage under your deck costs $500 to $3,000 on average. Accessibility may drive the price up. Since you can’t get a ditch machine under a deck, you’ll complete most of the work by hand. That adds time, which adds cost.

Storm Drain Installation

Storm drain channel systems cost $50 to $3,000. This system collects surface water from storms and then diverts it to a storm drain or dry well. You can purchase DIY kits or have a professional installation. They’re labor-intensive but require few tools. A handyperson or landscaper usually installs these systems.

Gutter Drainage and Buried Downspouts

You’ll pay $100 to $300 per downspout if they must bury downspout extensions. If it’s a simple matter of connecting to an existing system, you may pay a little less. If you don’t already have a storm drainage system, you’ll need to install one for an additional $1,500 on average. Instead of burying your downspouts, consider using a downspout catch basin with a mesh filter – these are easier to clean.

Garden & Landscape

Garden and landscaping drainage costs $350 to $10,000. You have several options for redirecting excessive moisture away from your garden or parts of your landscape. Inlets connected to pipes that slope away from the spot may be perfect, or you may need a French-style or a combination of both.

Dry Wells

Dry wells cost $1,600 to $4,800 on average. In its simplest form, a dry well is a pit filled with gravel, allowing water to drain away from your home. They’re usually connected to other drainage system parts like French drains.

French Drains

Exterior French drains cost $10 to $50 per linear foot on average but you may pay up to $100 per linear foot for complex installs. Ranges depend on where you put it. For example, a surface drain in easy to access areas, like a yard, costs far less than excavating to the base of a foundation and adding a sump pump.

Basement Drainage Systems Cost

Basement drainage systems cost $20 to $90 per linear foot, depending on the type and accessibility. Most often, you’ll find a French drain or similar, but they come in different depths. All drainage for basements deals with hydrostatic pressure pushing water into the walls.

Drainage systems often come as part of basement waterproofing costs. Complete waterproofing goes beyond a simple drain with waterproof membranes for the walls. Typical basement systems costs include:

Type Cost
Curtain drain $1,000 – $5,000
Interior French drain $3,000 – $8,000
Exterior deep French drain $2,000 – $10,000
Basement waterproofing $2,000 – $7,000
Sump pump $650 – $1,900
Full interior tile drain  $4,000 – $10,000

Trench or Channel Drain System Cost

Trench or channel drains cost $30 to $100 per linear foot. Complex installs might run $150 per linear foot. The price of the trough or channel will depend on length and material. A steel driveway trench, for example, could be $100 while a concrete one could be $300.

Concrete driveways usually require breaking up the concrete, installing a surface drain, and repouring to seal it in. With proper leveling of the concrete, water flows through this drain and into a metal or concrete channel, which directs the water away from your drive. Any type of system for driveways requires enough strength to withstand the weight of a parked car.

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Window Well Drain Cost

Window well drains cost $500 to $1,000 per window. Most window wells have a layer of gravel at the bottom, allowing natural drainage. But if water is still a problem, you might consider adding a window well drain. The drain is a pipe that flows water to either below the level of your foundation, or to an existing drainage system.

You can also consider adding a cover for $50 to $100 per window. Window well cover installation costs average $700 total.

Farm and Field Drain Cost

Field drain tile costs $700 to $2,000 per acre. Cost depends on the spacing of the drainage tiles and the size of mains used. You won’t find this type of drain tile in residential settings, just on agricultural land.

Labor Cost

Labor to install drainage work costs $50 to $100 per hour. Most projects take between 12 and 72 hours total or 1.5 days to a week or more. You’ll usually have a crew of 2 or 3 people working on any given project. Any project that requires concrete or block work, you’ll want to budget extra time for demolition and reinstallation.

Drainage Pipe Prices

Drainage pipes cost $1 to $5 per linear foot. You can purchase them without a fabric cover, with a fabric sock, and with a thick fabric and foam filtration layer.

  • Drainage catch basin costs $30–$100 each.

  • Channel drain kits cost $10–$15 per linear foot.

  • Connectors and junctions cost $2–$10 each.

Concrete Drainage Pipe Prices

Concrete drainage pipe prices range from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars. They’re usually reserved for larger, culvert-style applications rather than used in residential areas.

DIY Drainage Installation vs. Hire a Pro

You’ll find many DIY drainage kits on the market. They’re easy to install, require little background experience and few tools. These are a great option for some homeowners with a weekend to install them. However, if they’re not leveled correctly, they won’t solve your water issues. You also need a basic understanding of how and why you have drainage issues and how to correct them. A complete DIY job costs $100 to $2,000 total.

However, if you don’t have the time or experience to install these yourself—or want the peace of mind that comes with a professional installation—hire a local drainage installation professional. They’ll address your drainage issues and stop any current damage from getting worse.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How long does drainage installation take?

Drainage installation can take anywhere from a day to a week or more. It all depends on the style and needs of your project.

When is the best time to install new drainage?

You’ll usually want to do this in the summer or fall when it’s warm and dry. Contractors may charge seasonally changing rates, which will vary from region to region.

How do I know I need better drainage?

If you see any water damage or standing water, you need better drainage. But you might also check the following:

  • Overflowing gutters during rain

  • Puddles near your foundation

  • Basement water stains

  • Persistent yard puddles

“Be aware that excessive puddles in your yard can also be a sign of larger problems lurking below the ground (i.e. a failed septic system or broken sewer main) and should be investigated as soon as possible,” says Jeff Botelho, Expert Review Board member and Massachusetts-licensed journeyman with 15 years’ experience.

Can I combine drainage installation with other projects?

You can combine drainage installations with any project in the same area. For example, when installing new landscaping, you might want to check on installing a French drain. When redoing your roof, investigate getting new gutters or having yours fixed. Before finishing your basement, upgrade your French drain.

Any time you have new construction underway on your home, consider adding drainage systems, especially if building a new home or constructing a large addition. This is often the ideal time to add a drainage system because contractors are already digging up the ground.

What questions should I ask my drainage installer?

Questions to ask your drainage installer include:

  • Why do I need drainage?

  • Can you explain why it doesn’t naturally drain?

  • How long have you been in this business?

  • Do you have other work I can look at?

  • Are you licensed?

  • Do you guarantee your work?

  • How long should I expect this solution to last?

  • What options do I have?

Do I need a sump pump or a French drain?

It depends on your needs. French drains simply drain the water without activating anything. Sump pumps, however, are active once enough water raises the float. Sump pumps can drain water so long as it doesn’t reach a level high enough to flood the entire basement. 

Sump pumps are good solutions for unfinished/dirt basements and crawl spaces where some ground water is OK but you still want to keep your furnace, boiler, and/or water heater dry. Sump pumps won't necessarily keep your basement dry, but they will prevent flooding and can help protect your home's most critical appliances. A French drain will assist in keeping water from ever entering your basement to begin with and they can also be used in conjunction with sump pumps as a backup to keep the basement dry in extremely wet areas.