3 Types of Drains to Prevent Flood Damage

The rainy season can cause significant flood damage to a home’s foundation due to a lack of drainage systems. Torrential downpours can cause water to pond near the foundation or collect in crawlspace areas and even cause water intrusion and flood damage issues. It is important to remember the soils underneath your home’s foundation can lose their bearing capacity from excess water or even “heave” and push up on the foundation. Over time, this movement can cause the foundation to settle, bend or break. In order to safeguard your home’s foundation from flood damage, abide by the following types of drain systems that can prevent further flood damage or a foundation repair.

1. French Drain

The purpose of a French drain is to direct surface run off water and groundwater away from the home’s foundation or affected area. These types of drains are ideal because they reduce the hydrostatic pressure and remove excess moisture from the soil by collecting surface water and groundwater. French drains are normally installed below the affected area to ensure that the hydrostatic pressure is reduced. French drains an easy channel for water to flow through because water travels freely through a pipe and empties away from the home. French drains can be installed to alleviate water from pooling in low-lying areas such as a ditch or basement. If water has collected at the surface, a shallow French drain can be installed.

2. Full Gutter System

Full gutter systems can direct storm water to storm water management areas, ponds or collection systems. This allows excess water to be removed from the affected areas. Gutters are ideal for collecting roof runoff and capturing rainwater to direct away from the home’s foundation. It is important to remember that excess water near the home’s foundation can cause erosion to the soils around the home or even cause them to heave or settle. A low cost solution involves installing downspout extensions to the gutters. This allows the water to be discharged in another area. Extensions are even available that are installed under ground allowing the water to be released as far as the curb.   We recommend discharging the rainwater approximately 4 feet away from the house to a well-drained area.  Never discharge to an area such as a flower bed that is abutting the foundation as it may cause the water to pond in that area.

3. Sump Pump

A small pump is installed in places such as the basement or crawlspace to collect excess water to prevent flooding. Many homes have a sump pit already in place, which channels water to collect in the specific area. Homes that do not already have a sump pit in place can install an isolated pump. It is recommended that a professional install this device in order for the sump pump to operate correctly. Sump pumps are ideal for preventing large-scale flooding in low-lying areas or areas where there is a high water table. Homeowners should take a proactive approach to potential flooding during the rainy season. Flooding can even cause excessive moisture in the interior of a home resulting in mold and mildew, both causing severe damage and health complications. If you have concerns about flood damage that could impact your home, please contact Crosstown Engineering today.