DIY Drainage Solutions

June 15, 2021
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If you get a soggy yard every time it rains, you’re probably familiar with the issues that come with it: mud, mosquitoes, and a patchy lawn to name a few. In some cases, however, yard flooding can lead to more serious problems. Yard flooding can lead to soil erosion and damage to the foundation of your home when not properly managed. 

To get ahead of the issue, you may want to introduce one or more drainage solutions into your yard. With the right tools and materials, you and a neighbor can complete many drainage solutions on your own in a day or two. However, you’ll want to make sure you know what you’re doing before you begin. Nothing is worse than digging a dry well or French drain in your yard only to later realize you’ve dug in the wrong place. 

To learn more about DIY drainage solutions, you may want to reach out to JK Enterprise. Our team has years of experience managing yard flooding, and we’d be happy to offer guidance. 

Installing a sump pump 

One of the most effective ways to deal with yard flooding is to install a sump pump. These machines pump water from a pit, known as a sump, through a pipe to a new location. When installing a sump pump, you’ll need to dig a pit in a location where flooding occurs frequently and direct the water to a drainage area. 

An average sump pump can run anywhere between a couple hundred and a couple thousand dollars. If you choose to install it yourself, you can save several hundred dollars on installation costs. However, installing a sump pump can be difficult. Make sure you understand what you’re doing, and seek expert consultation if needed. 

Digging a dry well 

A somewhat simpler yet still effective way to deal with flooding is to dig a dry well. This DIY solution generally works best if water collects at one low point in your yard. During heavy rain, water will drain into the dry well. Over the course of several days, the water will slowly dissipate into the soil, which will prevent the negative effects of flooding. 

Digging a dry well is strenuous work, but fairly straightforward. The well should be six to eight feet deep and at least three feet wide. Make sure you choose a spot away from any pipes or wires, at a point significantly lower than the level of your house. To keep the well from filling with dirt, line it with a porous fabric material. Finally, fill the well with stones or gravel

Installing a French or curtain drains 

Another good way to drain a yard is with a French or curtain drain. A French drain is a long trench filled with gravel or rock meant to carry rainwater away from your home and toward a drainage area. A curtain drain is similar to a French drain but constructed a couple of feet underground. 

When constructing a French or curtain drain, you want to make sure that it is built at a slight decline away from your home. This will prevent water from flowing toward your home’s foundation. Line the trench with fabric and fill it with gravel or stones. For a curtain drain, be sure to leave at least a foot of space above the gravel for soil and grass. 

These solutions are best suited when you want to direct runoff water from a certain part of your yard. For example, if you want to keep water from eroding a garden, a French drain can collect running water before it reaches the garden. A French drain is most effective when collecting surface-level water, while curtain drains collect excess groundwater and can prevent your soil from becoming too saturated with water. 

Elevating lower levels your yard 

In certain cases, the best way to deal with yard flooding may be to elevate lower levels of your yard using mulch and topsoil. This may be the best solution if rainwater tends to collect near the foundation of your home instead of draining away from it. Elevating this area will help protect your home and disperse rainwater more effectively. 

Depending on the size and slope of your yard, elevation can be an extensive project. You’ll need to remove any grass or other vegetation from the area. If you have any sprinkler heads, you’ll need to have them raised to the new level of your yard. You will also want to choose a time before the next rainstorm to give the new lawn or garden time to grow and anchor the new soil. 

To learn more about how to elevate your yard or implement any of the other drainage solutions, give us a call today. We can also help you determine which solution is best for your yard.