We just had our retaining wall rebuilt by a contractor but for some reason they left the French drain pipe just hanging out unfinished over the sidewalk. What is the best way to deal with it? Contractor is unavailable.

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  • 3
    what problem are you trying to solve?
    – Jasen
    Commented Nov 30, 2023 at 20:46
  • Good point. 1. It's hanging over the sidewalk by about 6 in which doesn't seem like a good idea as far as people tripping on it and 2. I feel like it should be covered some so animals don't make a home in it but I'm not sure what the best option is.
    – jmjfisher
    Commented Nov 30, 2023 at 20:49
  • 2
    you may get a buildup of ice on the sidewalk
    – jsotola
    Commented Nov 30, 2023 at 22:11

1 Answer 1


I'd suggest cutting the tubing off at the face of the block, and using something like this rodent guard to keep critters from getting in. I use a couple of these on my landscape drains, and so far (in 8 years or so), I've not had any critter problems in them. (picture is an example of a critter guard, I'm sure there are lots of other similar options available).

But depending on how much outflow you expect from that drain line, you may want to make sure it flows onto your sidewalk surface and not just dropping down next to the wall, potentially undermining the sidewalk with constant flow right at the interface between the sidewalk surface and block wall.

Rodent guard

  • 1
    The second paragraph is key here. You don't want drain water dumping in the joint at the base of the wall.
    – isherwood
    Commented Nov 30, 2023 at 21:22
  • Maybe leave a 1/2 inch of pipe sticking out and add flashing at the bottom of the wall.. If freezing is a concern, might need to move it for legal/liability reasons or make sure it is never icy.
    – crip659
    Commented Nov 30, 2023 at 22:57
  • Having just rebuilt the retaining wall, I'd be more concerned about undermining it than the sidewalk, but yeah, water at that joint will have a bad effect on both...
    – FreeMan
    Commented Dec 1, 2023 at 13:54

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