Drainage Solutions for Better Water Management

When it comes to your basement and your home’s foundation, too much water is the villain of the story. A home without appropriate drainage solutions is at risk for basement flooding and expensive foundation problems over time. At United Structural Systems, we have the surface drainage, exterior drains, subsurface drainage, and interior drainage solutions you need to protect your home and ensure a solid foundation. Call us today to learn more and get a free estimate on our Charleston, West Virginia drainage contractor services or keep reading to learn more about how our drainage systems can help. 

How do you fix a soggy lawn?

Pretty much everyone would be happy with a pool at their house, but no one is happy when their yard starts to look like a pool thanks to standing water after a rain. However, standing water does a lot more than just leave you with a mucky, soggy lawn. An excess of water in the ground around your home can cause your basement to leak or even flood, causing damage to your interior and leading to the growth of mold. Over time, you could encounter serious foundation problems that will be expensive to repair. 

How does poor drainage damage foundations?

While poor craftsmanship can cause gaps for water to seep through into your basement, most often the actual culprit of basement flooding and foundation damage is hydrostatic pressure. Hydrostatic pressure builds up when soil is heavily saturated by water. After even a moderate rain, if you lack proper drainage solutions you will have literal tons of pressure squeezing in on your foundation walls. 

Types of drainage solutions

You can generally separate drainage solutions into two categories, interior and exterior. With a free assessment from the Charleston, West Virginia drainage contractors of USS, we can help to determine which drainage system is going to best benefit your home. Often more than one system is put in place to create total protection. 

Exterior drainage solutions

  • Gutter System: One of the most fundamentally important exterior drainage solutions you can invest in is a good gutter system. You want to ensure your gutters are free of debris, whether that’s from regular cleaning or installing effective guards to keep leaves from getting in them in the first place. You also want to make sure your gutter downspout is effectively discharging water away from your home’s foundation by at least five feet.
  • Yard Grading: Perhaps the second most important aspect of exterior drainage is appropriate grading of your yard. If you have a flat yard or a yard that slopes toward your home, the water has nowhere to go except right toward your foundation walls where it can begin to wreak havoc. Correcting the grade of your lawn to slope away from your home gives an easy pathway for water to drain away and leave your foundation and basement dry. 
  • French Drain: French drains, also referred to as saturation drains, are commonly used drainage systems in Charleston, West Virginia that absorb water from the soil to ease the hydrostatic pressure. If you are unable to change the grade of a flat yard, they can be a big benefit. A trench is dug that slopes away from your structure and a perforated pipe is laid in. Then gravel or other porous filling material is used to fill the trench before it is covered. 
  • Footing Drain: A footing drain is an effective drainage solution that consists of a pipe being installed around the perimeter of your foundation, level with the footing. The pipe stops water from leaking through the top of the footing and drains it away from your foundation. 

Interior drainage solutions

  • Sump Pump: Sump pumps are an important base component of interior basement waterproofing. Placed in a sump pit within your basement, sump pumps are activated when the pit fills with water and they pump the water through pipes and away from your home before the basement floods.
  • Vapor Barrier: Vapor barriers, or moisture barriers, are another major factor in interior waterproofing. Installing a vapor barrier includes covering the walls with plastic sheets to prevent water from seeping through.