Too much water can cause mold, cracks in the foundation, bad smells, and even health problems among people in your household. Good drainage helps keep your home a healthy and functional place to live. Knowing how to identify the signs of a drainage problem and what to do if your home has a drainage problem is important. Here’s what you need to know.
There are many ways to tell if your home has a drainage problem. Below are a few things to watch out for.
Standing Water on the Lawn
Watch for puddles in the low places on your lawn after a rain storm. The longer the puddles remain in place, the bigger the drainage problem. If the puddles appear on days when there has been no rain, this could be a sign of a septic tank drain field issue, or it could be runoff from another nearby property.
Have your septic tank inspected by a septic tank contractor if it has not been serviced in a while.
Most homes in Florida are built on a concrete slab (although some have crawl spaces). When the ground is too saturated with water, the slab can crack and bow. This happens because too much moisture affects the integrity of the concrete.
Foundation Cracks and Efflorescence
Cracks in the foundation of a house can be the result of natural settling, but if the cracks are large enough (an eighth of an inch wide or wider), this is a sign that the foundation is having an issue, which could be happening because of soil saturation around the house.
Efflorescence, the white crust that forms on foundation bricks, could also be a sign of too much moisture and soil saturation.
There can be many causes of drainage problems. Drainage is especially important in Florida, because the water table is so high. Any number of things can go wrong on a property to cause drainage problems.
Slope, also called grading, is important on a residential property. If the lawn is sloped in the wrong direction, this can cause water to pool up against your house instead of running out to the street.
Problems with Your Drainage System
Homes typically have a drainage system that directs water to underground pipes and then out into the street. Sometimes issues arise to prevent a drainage system from working properly. For example, tree roots can clog the pipes and cause a backup of water back into the lawn. The drainage system could also be flawed, so that it doesn’t work as it should.
Some soils drain well, while others do not. If your soil type is a dense clay, water will sit on the soil instead of soaking in. This can make water puddles a chronic problem.
Sometimes homeowners create their own drainage problems by installing large garden beds and failing to slope them properly. Landscaping can also interfere with existing drainage systems, preventing them from working properly.
What You Can Do
Failure to take care of your home’s drainage problems can result in a variety of issues inside your house. Drainage problems can lead to foundation cracks and even heaving of the foundation, which could cause thousands of dollars in damage.
If you suspect your home has drainage problems, have it inspected by a qualified contractor. Some drainage problems may require your contractor to install a new drainage system; however, many problems can be fixed with repairs to the current drainage system.
At Abbotts’ Construction Service, Inc., we’re happy to evaluate your home’s drainage, answer your questions, and suggest ways that your home’s drainage can be improved. Call us today to schedule an appointment.