Common Back Yard Drainage Issues | RH Renovation NYC

Common Back Yard Drainage Issues

A well-maintained backyard can be a source of pride and relaxation for homeowners. However, if your outdoor space is plagued by poor drainage, it can quickly turn into a headache and a breeding ground for issues like erosion, standing water, and even structural damage.

Standing Water

Standing water is one of the most noticeable and troublesome drainage issues in a backyard. It can turn your once-lovely garden or lawn into a muddy mess and, over time, damage plants, grass, and hardscapes. Common causes of standing water include poor grading, compacted soil, or improper runoff.


Improve grading: Ensure that your backyard has a slight slope away from your home to direct water away from your foundation.

Install a French drain: A French drain is a trench filled with gravel and a perforated pipe that redirects water away from your yard.


Erosion is the gradual removal of topsoil, which can result from heavy rainfall or runoff. Erosion can negatively impact the appearance of your yard and garden, as well as the health of your plants.


Plant ground cover: Ground cover plants, like creeping junipers or ornamental grasses, can help stabilize the soil and reduce erosion.

Mulch or gravel paths: Create pathways using mulch or gravel to control the flow of water and minimize soil erosion.

Soggy Lawns

Excessive water can lead to a soggy lawn, making it challenging to use your outdoor space. Soggy lawns are often caused by poor drainage or compacted soil.


Aerate the soil: Aerating your lawn can improve water penetration and alleviate compaction.

Install a dry well or rain garden: These can capture and manage excess water effectively.

Downspout Issues

Inefficient downspouts can channel water directly onto your lawn, exacerbating drainage problems. This can lead to erosion, oversaturation, and soil compaction.


Install downspout extensions: Extend your downspouts to direct water away from your home’s foundation and into a designated drainage area.

Collect rainwater: Use rain barrels to capture water from downspouts and use it for irrigation.

Poorly Draining Soil

Soil that doesn’t drain well can be a common problem in many backyards, particularly in clay-heavy soils. It can lead to waterlogged plants and poor growth.


Improve soil quality: Add organic matter like compost to improve soil structure and drainage.

Raised beds: Creating raised garden beds with well-draining soil can help circumvent the issue.

Foundation Flooding

Poor backyard drainage can lead to water pooling around your home’s foundation, which can result in serious structural issues over time.


Divert water away from the foundation: Ensure that the grading of your yard slopes away from your home, directing water away from the foundation.

Install foundation drains: These can collect and redirect water away from the foundation, preventing water infiltration.

Call us at RH Renovation NYC for more information regarding back yard drainage issues.

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