How to Build Culverts

A culvert is used to divert water beneath and away from an area, usually a driveway.

A culvert carries water away from an area.A culvert carries water away from an area.
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.

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.

Things You Will Need

  • Tape measure
  • Shovel
  • 1/2-inch gravel
  • Culvert pipe
  • Tamper

About the Author

Ben Wakeling graduated from Coventry University in 2009 with an upper second class honours B.Sc. degree in construction management. Wakeling is also a freelance writer, and works for a number of businesses, such as Demand Studios, Suite 101 and Academic Knowledge.