How to install a channel grate drain

Updated February 21, 2017

Channel drains are made of a combination of metal and plastic and serve as optimal drainage systems for driveways, pool decks or any type of outdoor area. In addition to providing an ecological and simple alternative to traditional concrete drains, the installation process provide consumers with great value for a drainage system. While installation may sound like a difficult process, it can be achieved.

Locate the lowest spot in the ground--where the most water accumulates--in the area where you want the channel grate drain. Dig a trench wide enough to allow for three inches of backfill on each side of the drain. The trench should be dug deep enough to allow for the height of the channel and drain plus an additional one-quarter inch for additional drainage.

Refill the trench with masonry sand and compact the ground thoroughly using your compactor. The compactor is used to create a level base and additional support.

Measure the channel to the desired length and cut with a fine-tooth saw.

Connect the channel drain directly to the sewer drain and drain pipes using a wrench and the provided clamps. The pieces should fit closely with one another and should easily snap together before putting on the clamps.

Test and make sure the channel drain fits securely in place. Do not tighten the clamps completely because you will have to remove the drain once more. If the channel drain does not fit, cut the drain to the desired length with the fine-tooth saw.

Remove the channel drain from the ground and take it apart. Spread PVC primer and cement along its joints and reassemble the channel drain back to its original state. This process must be done quickly, before the primer and cement dry. Let the channel drain sit for approximately 10 to 15 minutes or until the adhesive is firmly in place.

Install the grate on the channel and place the channel into the trench. Make sure the channel is tightly connected to the sewer and drain pipes using a wrench and the provided clamps.


The clamps should be tightened as securely as possible to prevent water leakage.

Things You'll Need

  • Drain
  • Grate
  • Sand
  • Fine-tooth saw
  • Channel
  • Shovel
  • Compactor
  • PVC primer and cement
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