How to Identify Landscape Drainage Issues

Surface Drain

When your landscape isn’t draining properly it can undo all the hard work you’ve put into your outdoor living space. In order to preserve your landscape design, try to identify problems quickly so they can be fixed before they get worse. Here are some common landscape drainage issues and how to identify them in your yard.

Signs of Landscape Drainage Problems

When your landscape is not draining properly, excess water will often appear. In order to determine if you are having problems, inspect your yard for any of the following signs:

  • Pooling or standing water after rain
  • Water pooling beneath downspouts rather than dispersing
  • Soggy ground, or areas of growth that exceeds the surrounding area
  • Formation of rivulets and fissures or simple soil erosion
  • Water stains on the home foundation

Causes of Landscape Drainage Issues

There are a variety of reasons why your soil may not be draining properly. Identifying what is causing your drainage issues will help you determine the best course of action for correcting them.

Clay Soil. Clay soil contains very fine particles that can get compacted. Because it is so heavily compacted, it is difficult for liquids to pass through.

Down Spout and Gutters Improperly Maintained. When spouts and gutters are not maintained properly, they allow excess water to collect where it otherwise might not. This can cause problems for your home’s foundations.

Lower Places in the Yard that Hold Water. Water will pool in certain parts of the yard and stand for a long time– maybe even days– after the rain has stopped if certain areas of your yard are improperly graded.

High Water Table. Sometimes the cause for soggy ground may not be immediately identifiable. In those places, it is likely that a high water table is to blame.

Solutions For Landscape Drainage Issues

The solution for landscape drainage issues depends on the problem. Here are some fixes for the most common drainage issues in your yard.

Amend Soil. When you have clay or sandy soil that is causing drainage issues, you may have to add sand, humus or other soil amendments.

Clean and Repair Downspouts and Gutters. Cleaning out gutters and making sure that down spouts are in good repair will ensure that the water is draining properly, rather than pooling in place.

Build Drainage Systems. An outdoor living contractor can inspect and install a drainage system that can provide a permanent solution to a landscape drainage issue.

A soggy lawn and standing water can not only be nuisances but can ultimately damage your home and landscape. Once you know what the cause of your landscape drainage problems are, you can take steps to fix them and protect your home and landscape design.

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Do you have a drainage issue in your yard? Tell us about your problem and we'll help you find a solution.