How to Build Culverts

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A culvert is used to divert water beneath and away from an area, usually a driveway. It is used to prevent water from pooling and causing erosion, which can damage the existing surfacing and cause extensive costs to repair. Installing a culvert is a time-consuming but straightforward task.

Things You'll Need

  • Tape measure
  • Shovel
  • 1/2-inch gravel
  • Culvert pipe
  • Tamper
  • Refer to your local building code to ensure you are up to date with regulations surrounding the installation of a culvert. Measure the width and length of the culvert required.

  • Dig the ditch using your shovel, excavating twice the width of the culvert to provide working spaces. Excavate 3 inches below the level at which you wish to place your culvert.

  • Lay 3 inches of 1/2-inch gravel at the bottom of your ditch to provide a firm base on which to lay your culvert pipe.

  • Lay the culvert pipe on your gravel base and back-fill the trench with excavated soil. Tamp the soil down regularly to ensure it is compacted, and to prevent the pipe from moving.

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