Foundation Drain Life Expectancy

What would you say is the life expectancy of a foundation perimeter drain pipe under normal circumstances?

30 years

40 years

50 years

OK, what’s your point…
I just canned my first response, knowing you must know better. (CMI)

What type of material?

That was my first thought Jeff.

Well, since today’s PVC Pipe, the most common, has been around since the 1950’s, it would be safe to assumme that 100 years would be in order.

Ductile Iron came out in the 1950’s and still around.

Iron Pipe in the 15th century and introduced to the US in 1804

Cast Iron in 1664

Clay pipe in the 1800’s and still discovered functional in areas of the Country.

Lead Pipe anyone? Yep, that goes back to B.C.
Along with the bored Logs and Brittle Baked Clay pipe

One of my favorites, The Orangeburge Pipe 1948-1963, I guess that one did not last very long. :wink: It was also black not orange.

I guess the answer would be a life time which is not part of the Poll Answers.

The average life span average is about 77 today and 300 years ago was about 25-30
So I guess the pipe back then lasted a life time too!:mrgreen:;):):smiley:


I recently purchased a French inspection report software in which it states that foundation perimeter drain have a useful life expectancy of about 30 years.

Me think that it should be much more but my Internet search did not confirm any life expectancy and the software author is reputable, thus my question here.


*Le systéme du drain français situé au pied de la fondation n’est pas visible et ne fait pas partie de cette inspection *
Le drain français a une vie utile d’environ 30 ans. Bien entendu, ceci peu varier. Le racines d’arbres et les tassements de sol sont souvent la raison de son inefficacité. Des traces d’efflorescence et / ou un sous-sol humide sont un indice de son manque d’efficacité."

Marcel, thanks for your comments as always, useful information!

Jeffrey, the drainage piping in question is perforated pvc.

Me think that the software’s author location of Montreal where Ferrous Iron is common is the reason that this comment was made.

Ferrous Iron is a bacteria which multiply in iron rich soil and prematurely block perimeter drain pipe.

Maybe it was translated wrong

Oh, I see!

Well, if it was me I’d depend on something other than a report program.
More inclined to look at mfg. stats, Installer replacement records etc.

But I see you can not find these readily available.

My next inclination is that “prediction” of life expectancy has way too many variables to be relied upon by anyone involved in your inspection. So I would not be using that part of the report.


PVC can last indefinitely.