What’s Bigger Than A She Shed? A Granny Pod

Tiny House Drainage Solutions
Tiny House Drainage Solutions
Patio areas near structures can benefit from plastic trench drain systems in order to redirect excessive rain water.

If we learned nothing else from the now infamous State Farm® commercial, it’s that people like to have their own space. Guys have a man cave, ladies like Cheryl have their she sheds, kids have a kid cabin or tree house and now there’s such a thing as a Granny Pod. The idea of having a tiny house isn’t just for up and coming couples anymore; it’s helping families stay close (yet not too close) together. More and more tiny houses are popping up in residential areas.

Multi-generational living isn’t a new concept, we just used different terminology such as “mother-in-law suites”. The idea is once again finding a new popularity. Some of this can be attributed to the rising cost of healthcare and eldercare which makes it difficult for aging parents or close family members to live independently. This need has inspired families to think outside the box. However, what does this have to do with plastic trench drains?

We want to remind you about the importance of planning for drainage around your structure, regardless of what you call it. The size of your living space doesn’t matter when it comes to flooding, water damage and mold. Costly repairs can be avoided with the right drainage solution. Plastic trench drain systems are cost effective and perfect for most tiny house applications. They are designed for light traffic in residential areas and can hold up well as long as you’re not planning on having heavy vehicle traffic go over them. You can install them near the home, patio, garden and sidewalk areas to redirect storm water to a safe distance from the house.

When it comes to plastic drainage, you have a lot of options to choose from. Polylok™ offers a small, yet heavy duty system called Skinny Trench. It measures 3.5″ wide, 4.2″ tall and comes in 4′ sections. The Skinny Trench is available in black, white and grey. It can be cut into 1′ increments if needed. The grates are also plastic and come screwed to the channel. They are reversible with a flat side and a convex side. The grates are ADA compliant and have a grid pattern that are available in black, grey, green, tan and white.

NDS Slim Channel Kit
NDS Slim Channel kits include couplers, end caps, outlet and anchor clips.

NDS® offers a few options including their new Slim Channel which, as the name states, is a narrow system. It is 2.25″ wide, 3.125″ tall (with grate) and 3′ long with easy installation using internal coupling. The channels in this system are black but the grates come in three patterns that are available in white, sand and grey. They are the same length as the channels and snap into place for easy maintenance. Mini Channel™ drains are another option from NDS®. This drainage system is 2.75″ wide, 3.125″ tall (with grate) and comes in 6′ sections. There are a wide selection of grates for the Mini Channel® system since NDS® has their coordinating grates and several manufacturers have created decorative grates that are compatible with the system. The NDS® grates are plastic, 3′ in length and come in three patterns that are available in black, green, grey, white, sand and brick red. They also have a small selection of 12″ long decorative cast iron and brass grates.

TDS Decorative Grates
Bronze Age Grates from Trench Drain Systems give plastic trench drains an sophisticated look.

Iron Age Designs have a large selection of decorative cast iron options for the Mini Channel® that will enhance the appearance of the channels and blend into the surroundings. Bronze Age Grates from Trench Drain Systems™ offers three patterns in aluminum, bronze and brushed bronze for a polished high end look.

If a finished, classy look is what you want for your tiny house, the MAX Mini drainage system is available exclusively through Trench Drain Systems™. MAX Mini is an enhanced Mini Channel® system with decorative edging available in kit lengths of 3′, 6′, 12′ or 24′ and include coupler(s), an outlet and an end cap. There are three groups of kits to choose from. One of the most popular kits includes Oil Rubbed Bronze edging on sand colored channels with decorative cast iron grates that have been ‘pre-rusted’ with a Baked on Oil Finish (BoOF). Bronze Age Grates top off sand channels with a Bronze Veneer edging that provide an upscale look to any project. A stainless steel perforated grate option with stainless steel edging on grey channels is also available. The vast majority of the compatible grates are heel proof and all are ADA compliant.

Trench Drain Systems - MAX Mini Options
MAX Mini kits from Trench Drain Systems offer an upscale look to plastic drainage solutions.

Regardless of which system you decide to go with, you may a have difficult time finding these selections in the big box stores. Most of them have a limited supply of basic drainage products and are usually geared towards driveway drainage which may be overkill when it comes to tiny house and patio drainage. For smaller systems, better decorative grating options and purchasing full kits, we recommend shopping online.

Do you need more information or have questions about drainage? Feel free to call us at 610-638-1221, we are experts within the industry and have an engineering department that are happy to provide suggestions.


If you have a large project, we can also provide a quote that is fast and free.



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