Having a basement comes with risks, and it’s imperative that preventative measures are taken to avoid water damage. The goal is to keep water and moisture out at all costs. That’s why it’s important to take a look at your landscaping to ensure water is being directed away from your home. We’ve compiled a list that may help you solve your water problems and avoid the costs and headaches associated with water damage from flooding.
Grade Your Lawn
- The slope of your yard should direct water away from your home to avoid the risk of moisture getting inside walls or damaging your foundation. If you notice water pooling in areas around your home, you may have a grading problem.
- Some drainage issues can be solved with other landscaping techniques like the use of downspouts, heavier mulch, creating a rain garden, or digging out a small indention, or swale, to divert water. More serious issues may require you to regrade your lawn. Extra dirt may need to be added to add a necessary slope. Calling a professional may be useful and help you avoid damage to pipes, drains, vents, and basement windows.
- Mulch helps hold in moisture and keeps plants thriving. It can be a great addition to any garden area. If you use mulch close to your home, be sure to keep a barrier of at least 6 inches between house walls and landscaping. If mulch becomes wet and is too close to a home’s structure, it can rot the material and lead to possible water damage in the future.
- There are different types of materials that can be used for mulching. Be aware that some hold in moisture better than others. River rocks, for example, will not be as effective as wood chips or bark.
Redirect Water with Downspouts
- The goal is to divert incoming water as far away from the home and foundation as possible. Downspouts or splash blocks connected to gutters will direct water away from a home’s structure. The farther water is away from the home the better, but it is recommended that it be at least 4-5 feet.
- Any signs of water buildup around the exterior of the home should be addressed immediately to avoid damages.
- Every spring and fall gutters should be cleared and repaired so water can flow freely through downspouts.
Use Plants and Grass
- Plants and grasses that are native to your area can naturally provide drainage for excess water and prevent erosion as well. If used strategically, they can provide a path or barrier to keep water away from your home.
Address Drainage Issues
- After rainstorms do a perimeter walk and take notice of any areas where you notice water pooling or possibly entering your home. A swampy lawn may indicate that your sump pump is not diverting water far enough away from your home. It may be necessary to extend your sump pump’s outflow or take another look at your downspouts and extend them further.
You want to avoid basement flooding at all costs. That means it’s going to take careful observation and maintenance to ensure your area stays dry. Landscaping is just one piece of the puzzle. Being mindful of interior risks is just as important. Knowing risks and taking preventative measures will be the best way to avoid water damage.
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