As professional waterproofers, we are often asked “Will yard drainage help my leaky basement or crawlspace?” We tell them both “yes it will and no it won’t.” Today’s blog explains why proper yard drainage is a must for guarding against water damage but it may not be the end-all solution.
Proper Grading, Gutters, and Downspouts
Proper grading and functional gutters and downspouts are your home’s first defense against water invading your home’s foundation through the basement or crawlspace.
Grading is a measure of the slope of the land around your home. Proper grading to divert water away from your foundation is 1 inch down for every foot you move away from your home. This ensures that the water flows downward away from your home. We realize this degree of grading is not possible for every home but homeowners should make sure that the ground is never sloped towards their home. Improper grading allows water to pool around your home, seeping into the ground, and then putting pressure on your basement walls or flooding your crawlspace foundation. This is never a good thing for a home’s foundation.
Once the grading is done as best as it possibly can to divert water away from your home, gutters and downspouts are your next line of defense. Gutters should be clear of debris and properly attached to your roofline to catch all the rainwater and direct it away. This is especially important during fall as leaves build up and could possibly block the gutter exit. Gutters must also be properly sloped so that rainwater travels to the downspouts instead of simply filling up and holding. If your gutters are not properly channeling water, check for debris buildup and check the slope for a proper flow of water.
As the water flows down the gutter, the next step is the downspouts. Like the gutters, the downspouts should be clear and free of debris that could block the exit of water. Make sure the downspouts are directed away from your home. Consider what material surrounds your gutter and how water will impact it. Many homeowners place concrete pavers or gravel under the downspout for water to flow over.
If you find water puddles at your downspout, consider installing an NDS catch basin to divert this water even further away. A catch basin is basically a buried filter and pipe that catches water from your downspout and directs it further away from your home. Downspouts do not help your leaky basement or crawlspace if they simply collect water to sit at the base of your home allowing it to seep down.
French Drains to Help Leaky Basements or Crawlspaces
If you find water pooling in other areas around your home, a french drain (a slight variation is a curtain drain) may be needed to keep this water from leaking into your basement or crawlspace. A french drain is a gravel-filled trench with a perforated pipe below that leads water to a farther part of your home, sewer system, drainage ditch, or the street. Proper grading is needed to keep the water flowing through the french drain but it will help to relocate the water that is seeping into your basement or crawlspace.
Will Yard Drainage Help my Leaky Basement or Crawlspace?
Remember we said the answer to the question “Will yard drainage help my leaky basement or crawlspace?” is yes and no. Here is the key part of this equation.
Yes, proper grading and drainage are crucial to keeping a dry basement or crawlspace but even with these measures in place, you may still find water problems. Water will find the path of the least resistance. Even with the best yard drainage possible, if that path of least resistance means water is seeping around your basement walls or into your crawlspace, you will eventually have water issues. This is where Aqua-Guard Waterproofing comes in.
The best defense against leaky basements and crawlspaces and ultimately water damaging your home’s foundation is a combination of correct yard drainage and basement waterproofing or crawlspace waterproofing. There are 5 ways water can enter your home’s foundation and our waterproofing methods stop all 5 of those ways. We also offer a “Life of the Structure” Warranty on our work ensuring that your home, no matter the future owner, will have a dry basement or crawlspace.
Our waterproofing professionals will evaluate your home, find the source of the water problem, and offer the best solutions at a fair and reasonable price. We offer free consultations with a single point of contact throughout the process. You can rest assured that once Aqua-Guard waterproofing has done the job, your water problems are solved. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.