Where your home is situated on your property and the land grade or slopes around it has a lot to do with keeping your basement or crawl space dry. However, many homeowners don’t give much thought to the land grade around their home until flooding starts.
If your property’s land grade is not as it should be, rainfall and excess water may be directed right for your home. This excess water can get into your home through basement windows, doors, top block cells, and more! But, how do you know if your land grade is sufficient for your property and home?
Is Your Land Grade Sufficient?
It’s not as complicated as you might think. Stand several yards back from your home where you can get a clear view of the perimeter of the structure. Does the land around your home angle down or slope down towards your home in any area? Is the land flat with no real direction for water to be pushed away during heavy rainfall? The general rule of thumb is that the ground sloping away from your home should do so at a ratio of one inch per foot.
Some of the most frequently discovered land grade issues are the following:
While your flower garden may be stunning, it could be hurting your home in the long run if the foundation beds don’t follow the original grade of site and slope toward your home. Yes, plants do a great job of soaking up water for the most part, but alone they can’t handle excessive amounts of water efficiently.
Soil Composition & Erosion
Over time, the soil used to back-fill around your home can become hardened, eroded, and sloped in ways that it didn’t used to be. This can happen without homeowners even noticing. It usually happens very gradually, especially with erosion. As the original soil slowly disappears, a slope that once pushed water away from your home efficiently is now directing water towards your home. Not good!
Can You Fix The Land Grade Around Your House?
The quick answer is, yes! There are a few things that you can try to do yourself after you notice that your land grade needs to be addressed. Try building certain areas up around your foundation or basement with dirt, mulch, etc. The angle should always be pushing water away from your structure rather than allowing it to flow towards your home. Some ideas include getting a load of dirt delivered to the area that needs to be addressed and/or re-mulching flower beds with adequate mulch to increase a proper grade.
A good rule of thumb is that the ground around your home should slope away from the house for several feet at a grade of at least 1 inch per foot. While it might not seem like much at first glance, it’ll make a big difference over time.
Also keep in mind that any kind of pavement near your home needs to have a proper slope as well. This includes driveways, sidewalks, raised cobble stone pathways, etc. If it doesn’t, you’ll need to correct the grade, which may mean replacing the pavement altogether, mud-jacking it back into proper position, or adding another layer of pavement next to the house to reverse the slope. This typically requires professional assistance.
At the end of the day, you’ll be glad that you corrected your land grade issues. Instead of worrying about flooding issues when it rains, you’ll be able to think of every other project on your to-do list! If you need help correcting your land grade and want it done right from the start by professionals, give Stay Dry Waterproofing in Cleveland, TN, a call or visit our website. We look forward to serving you and your family!