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Do I Need a Yard Slope for Drainage?

With an average of around 38 inches of rain a year, yard drainage can be a problem for Chicagoland residents. In addition to rain, there is also the springtime snowmelt to consider. If there is enough snowpack and enough warm days in a row, snowmelt can also cause flooding. And no one like a wet, muddy yard – especially if all of that water that is failing to drain ends up making its way into a garage or basement. A poorly draining yard can harm plants, grass, and the overall environment. Not to mention the possibility of further damage to the house, basement, garage, and all the material objects stored inside. A flooded yard is no fun for anyone, but sloped yard drainage can help.

Installing and creating new lawn drainage solutions, including a yard slope for drainage, can prevent potential flooding. Working on grading and draining solutions is an important aspect of designing a new landscape, renovating a current yard, or solving any yard drainage problems. 

Do I Need a Yard Slope for Drainage?

The Importance of Lawn Drainage 

Failing to think about yard grading and drainage while working on a landscape project can open up the possibilities for all types of issues. Having a proper slope for drainage is important for a variety of reasons. 

  1. Avoiding Water Accumulation: A flat yard or one with low spots can be prone to rainwater gathering. This leads to waterlogged soil and potential damage to plants, grass, and other aspects of the landscape. 
  2. Minimizing Erosion: A proper yard slope directs water away from your property and reduces the risk of social erosion. Erosion can damage the yard and the property.
  3. Protecting the Foundation: When water pools around the home’s foundation, it can make its way into the basement or garage. This can cause structural problems and can create ideal conditions for mold growth. Plus, a wet basement can damage any personal possessions kept in a basement. Similarly, especially in areas prone to flooding, a properly sloped yard can lower the risk of other areas of the home becoming victim to floodwaters and mass rainfall. 
  4. Healthy Landscapes: Too much water can cause damage to plants and grass, even causing them to drown. Proper drainage is not only good for the house but for the garden.
  5. Safety: A wet, muddy yard can be a slipping hazard. A sloped yard for drainage can reduce the number of slips and falls due to puddles.

All of these reasons indicate the importance of proper lawn grading and drainage. If you are concerned about any of these issues, consider reaching out to a professional landscaper to assess your needs. 

Creating a Yard Slope For Drainage 

When starting a landscape design from scratch, or reconfiguring an existing outdoor living space, there are steps you, or the professional landscapers you hire, will need to take regarding grading and drainage. 

As with any home renovation project, be sure to check any local regulations or homeowners associations and comply with any regulations, restrictions, and acquire any necessary permits. 

When it rains, observe the water flow. It may be helpful to your landscape team to mark any low spots, or anywhere the water is accumulating. Note any places where water is flowing towards your home or other structures. You can work with a landscape team to determine where you want the water to be directed, whether that means installing a new drainage ditch or directing water into the drainage on the road. 

Creating a yard slope, or any drainage work, can be a large project depending on the extent of the drainage issues. While not as fun, or aesthetically pleasing as creating a new outdoor living space, or flower garden, drainage is an important aspect of any landscape design. 

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Grading and Drainage Solutions 

While many landscape projects can relatively easily become do-it-yourself projects if you have the time and the skills, projects involving yard slopes for drainage should be left to the professionals. Determining the proper sloped yard drainage requires a lot of knowledge and a decent amount of math. Landscape professionals like the team at Arbeen Landscaping have the skills and knowledge to ensure your lawn drainage work is done right. 

Solutions for yard drainage problems include the common solution of grading or sloped yard drainage. Grading involves modifying the yard to force water to flow away from the house or other structure, away from low spots, and towards a drainage point such as a grate. 

Other solutions include French drains (a trench filled with gravel and a pipe that redirects water), swales (shallow, wide ditches), catch basins (containers on ground level with a grated opening used to collect and redirect water), and dry wells (underground structure filled with gravel that distributes water into the soil). 

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Start Seeing the Benefits

Properly functioning gutters and downspouts should direct roof runoff away from the house, and ideally away from any low spots in the garden. Ensuring your gutters are clear of leaves and debris allows them to function as they should. 

An eco-friendly, low-tech solution to help with drainage and excess water is the use of a rain barrel. Rather than trying to redirect water, it can be collected and used for other purposes. While you shouldn’t drink rainwater without filtering it first, it can be used to water plants, wash your car or your deck, or do anything that doesn’t need drinkable water.  

Yard slopes for drainage can be combined with perfectly functioning gutters, drainage ditches, and rain barrels for proper lawn drainage. Professional landscapers will determine the best sloped yard drainage solutions or a combination of solutions for your home. Ideal solutions are based on your property, yard makeup and design, environment and weather, and other factors. 

Arbeen Landscaping, serving the Chicago suburbs, works on all types of drainage solutions. Our team will make sure your yard is looking as good before, during, and after rainfall. Contact our team to start discussing your drainage issues, if you need a yard slope, and how we can solve the problem. 

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