Use packing popcorn (peanuts) instead of gravel for filling a french drain


I'm digging a 2 feet deep french drain a few feet away from the house. I'm wondering if instead of gravel I could surround the 4" perforated pipe with packing popcorn (or peanuts, or whatever they are called). I'll be backfilling 1 foot with dirt on top.

What leads me to believe that this can work is the existence of this product:

I know that gravel works. The question is: is the popcorn really a good idea or am I going to see problems in the future.

Best Answer

I don't think packing popcorn will work. I'd think it would compress and leave at best a spongy spot in your yard. Most likely you'll end up with it collapsing as soon as any weight is applied over it. The material shown in the two products you listed is a polystyrene aggregate. I don't think packing peanuts are the same exact material.