I'm wondering whether my house has a French drain to keep water away from the foundation. Is there a way to find out that doesn't involve digging up the yard? (I.e., would there be any above-ground indications?) Or do I just need to start digging and see what I find?
To tell the truth a really good French drain install will have no evidence with the exception of the water exit point. In some cases you may see a brown stripe through the lawn but not in all climate zones. A stripe that is brown is one way to tell but not always there. It is much like a leach field in some areas they are green above the drain field and some are brown it depends on the soil and local clean mate and rain / heat.