That can cause water damage, to the backyard patio area, for example, or it can lead to mould. Standing water can become a breeding ground for mosquitoes.
It also raises the risk of a flood into your basement, since increased rainfall means increased water soaking into the soil, building up pressure on the cement walls.
Cracks form in the walls over time. Cement is porous, so it’s only a matter of time before you start seeing water leaks in the basement area. In older homes, with foundations made from cinder blocks, water can make its way through the mortar.
A French drain in the backyard is one way to channel water away from your home, or from areas where it has pooled.
HOW TO INSTALL A FRENCH DRAIN
- Decide where the water is pooling and decide where you want the water to go – into other bodies of water, or the road curbside. You should run a downspout connection into the French drain, to channel rainwater flowing off the roof into the drainage system and away from the house.
- Use spray paint, or stakes with string, to mark the width, length and direction of the trench.
- Dig a trench three feet deep, around 12 inches wide.
- Trenches should be dug parallel to the home or horizontally across slopes in the backyard.
- Make sure you dig a trench that has a good slope away from the house, so the water flows downward. Slope it down one inch for every 10-12 feet of trench. Again the over-riding objective is to take the water away from the house so it doesn’t seep into your basement, or away from areas in your yard where the water has pooled.
- Lay down a filter fabric along the trench, so dirt or grass doesn’t clog the holes in the pipe.
- Place the correlated, perforated pipe into the trench. The holes in the pipe should point downward, into the soil.
- Pour gravel into the trench, over the top and down the sides of the pipe. The gravel blocks out excess debris.
- The water in the soil will enter the pipe from an inlet at one end, or soak into the perforated pipe, along its entire length, and flow away to another location.
- The end of the pipe should pop out of the trench by the roadside or into another pool of water.
- Backfill the trench with topsoil to completely cover the drainage system. Re-seed the area if you want or cover it with landscaping stone.
The bottom line is to ensure you have a backyard area with a drainage system that can handle the excessive rainfall we have been seeing. And it is vital you have a system in place that channels water away from your home’s foundation. A French drain provides a sunken, easy reliable path to push water outside of your backyard.