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Understanding Drainage, Grading & Your Home’s Positioning

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Protecting your home from water damage doesn’t just mean waterproofing when it looks like it’s about to rain. The grade of your land can also impact your home’s likelihood of succumbing to hydrostatic pressure. Luckily, with the help of an area contractor, you can invest in regrading solutions to limit the amount of water that comes into contact with your foundation, basement, or crawl space.

The Basics of Landscape Grading

To regrade your home, you first have to understand the grade you’ve been provided through either natural or man-made means. There are two types of grades that you can find yourself working with. These are:

  • Positive grades
  • Your home resides on a positive grade if it sits at the highest point or one of the higher points in your lawn. When your home is at this point, water will rush away from your foundation, thereby limiting the amount of hydrostatic pressure you have to deal with.
  • Negative grades
  • A negatively graded yard puts your home and foundation at one of the lower points in your yard. Negative grades tend to drive water back toward your home when it rains, causing pooling and poor drainage that can, in turn, damage your structural supports.

Regrading your home allows you to compensate for your lawn’s natural grade. More often than not, this means you’ll be able to redirect water away from your home, thereby keeping your foundation, basement, or crawl space a little bit drier.

Identifying Poor Grading

Even if you don’t have the experience to help you identify poor grading right off the bat, rain tends to give a negative grade away. If you’re looking to assess your land’s grade, you’ll want to keep an eye out for:

flooded yard
  • Spongy soil
  • The more water your soil has to absorb, the less stable the soil is going to be. While the surface of your yard may look as it should, walking through your yard may bring waiting water to the surface.
  • Poor draining throughout your lawn
  • When in doubt, follow the puddles. Water will run toward the parts of your lawn that are the lowest and least protected. These puddles will tell you where your lawn fails to drain, allowing you to work with professionals to find adequate drainage solutions.
  • Mosquitoes
  • Mosquitoes love few things more than standing water to breed in. If you’ve noticed a sharp uptick in the number of mosquitoes you’re having to swat, you may have a host breeding in your yard as a result of standing water or excessive moisture.
  • Dying landscaping or grasses
  • If your landscaping and grass end up overexposed to water for an extended period of time, you may notice mass die-offs throughout your yard. Too much water can rot a plant’s roots away, leaving a scar behind in your landscaping.

Poor grading doesn’t always manifest itself in the most obvious ways, though. Sometimes, a homeowner won’t notice the symptoms of a poor grade until it’s too late.

Poor grading that isn’t taken care of in a reasonable amount of time can result in significant property damage. The most common types of property damage you may have to endure when faced with a negative grade include:

  • Rear and side swales holding water
  • Unwanted ponds
  • Inappropriately high grading around a home
  • Unnatural sloping toward a home
  • Foundation damage

How Can Contractors Re-Grade Your Lawn?

While you can speak to a contractor about physically regrading your lawn, there are also other means through which you can use the grade of your landscaping to drive water away from your home. Contractors working out of the Denver, CO, area can help you install:

installing exterior drainage
  • Catch basins
  • Catch basins use grate-protected drainage systems to drive water away from your home and down into a gravel-filled pit. These pits are designed to mesh with your landscaping and will protect your home without compromising your outdoor aesthetic.
  • Gutters and downspouts
  • When in doubt, why not take advantage of the waterproofing measures you likely already have installed near and around your home? You’ll want to keep your gutters and downspouts free of obstructions, or else you may find yourself dealing with unwanted pooling around the perimeter of your home. Outside of just keeping these home additions clean, you can invest in upgrades – like underground downspouts or gutter grates – to keep them in service for even longer.
  • Waterproofing your foundation
  • When in doubt, you should always talk about your available waterproofing solutions with a professional basement waterproofing contractor. While waterproofing your home won’t fix your yard’s grade, it will make it easier for you to keep water away from your belongings.

Protect Your Home with Expert Help

Regrading your home can help you keep your foundation, basement, or crawl space safe from water damage. If you’re interested in exploring your grading options or in discussing other waterproofing measures that can help protect your home, you can call on a professional in the Denver, CO, area. After a home inspection from an expert at Complete Basement Systems, you can use an inspector’s free services quote to determine what solutions will best protect your home from water damage.

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