How to Install a Catch Basin in a Driveway

Drainage is an essential part of any property, especially for hardscape areas like driveways. Without the proper drainage, a property can face a wide range of issues–some immediate and others developing over the years without any signs. Discoloration and erosion of pavement and soil are some of the minor results of water damage to a driveway that is easy to fix. More severe damage includes cracks, lifting, base shifting, and similar pavement issues that require total driveway replacement. A driveway catch basin, like one from Slot Drain, provides effective water management with easy installation. 

Benefits of the Slot Drain System and Why It’s Better

Slot Drain is a modern take on the traditional trench drain system. It has several benefits that make it suitable for a driveway catch basin design and better than the traditional options offered by the competition.

Simple and Discreet

Traditional trench drain systems are typically big, bulky, and unattractive. Of course, functionality is the primary concern of these systems, but you still want something aesthetically pleasing. Slot Drain’s design is unique–it features a linear, slim channel and it doesn’t require a grate cover, so it will blend seamlessly with pavement or driveway pavers.


Slot Drain provides more durability than the traditional trench system. The 6,000 and 7,000 Series models are made of high-quality stainless steel with a heavy-duty load class, making them capable of supporting the daily traffic of driveways. Not having a grate cover also adds to the system’s durability, since there is not a concern about fragile grates breaking under the weight of cars.

Temperature Resistant

The weather these days has been changing daily from one extreme to another, and drainage systems can quickly become overwhelmed and suffer damage that is sometimes severe, leaving you with a broken system. Slot Drain’s stainless steel build makes it resistant to extreme temperatures, ensuring it won’t crack or break as the weather changes.

Easy to Maintain

Without a grate, Slot Drain is much easier to maintain than traditional drainage systems with catch basins. Cleaning tools fit easily into the channel, and systems like Flush Flo make it easy to rinse out any bacteria and debris into the catch basin so it can be emptied and cleaned.

Simple Installation

There are different methods on how to install a catch basin in a driveway, and they can vary depending on the brand of the drain. In some cases, extensive excavation is necessary to install a system if the pavement is already in place. Slot Drain retrofitting is an easy process that results in minimal damage to the driveway.

How to Install a Catch Basin in a Driveway

Slot Drain’s linear driveway catch basin design is a straightforward installation. The system comes pre-sloped and pre-assembled, cutting down on the necessary work for a proper installation or retrofitting. 

  1. For installation in a newly constructed driveway, you first need to excavate to ensure there is enough room underneath and on both sides for the drain to fit. Slot Drain requires a minimum of 6” of concrete around the drain.
  2. To help ensure that you can properly secure the Slot Drain system, you want to consider pre-pouring a concrete pad underneath the system. If you forego the pad, you want to secure the sump pit with the included mounting brackets, bolting them to the sides of the sump.
  3. Install Slot Drain pit and reinforce the sidewalls to prevent bowing.
  4. Bolt the last part of the Slot Drain to the pit, or use the numbered flanges to bolt the necessary sections. 
  5. Use wooden stakes to help set drain sections at your desired elevation, securing them to the stakes with the provided mounting holes.
  6. Once you have the drain at the desired elevation and properly secured, tie the rebar from the floor grid into the leveling bars on the drain. Cover the drain opening with tape or styrofoam, so the concrete will not get into the inner channel.
  7. To prevent the drain from floating on the concrete, pour in two stages. Once the first half has set, you can pour the rest, using a pencil vibrator to ensure that the concrete completely surrounds the drain, leaving no voids or bubbles.
  8. Once the concrete is set, you can remove the drain covering and break the metal tabs to ensure a continuous drain. Use the paddle tool to ensure there is no debris in the system from installation. 

Retrofitting the System

Retrofitting a driveway catch basin follows many of the same steps, but with a few additions. First, you want to mark the location and cut a 24” trench within the slab, excavating it for the Slot Drain system to fit with 6” of concrete surrounding the drain. From there, installation follows the same process.

The Right Driveway Catch Basin Design

A driveway catch basin is critical to protecting your driveway from potentially expensive water damage. There are many drainage options available, but a Slot Drain with a catch basin is the most effective and attractive option. Slot Drains provide better durability, easier maintenance and are easier to install than other systems. Once you know how to install a catch basin in a driveway, two or three people can have the job done in a matter of hours, ensuring that you have a safe and water-free driveway.

Contact the experts at Slot Drain today to learn more about industry-leading drainage products.