Block Water to Stop Backyard Flooding

flooded lawn with trees

Nobody wants a flooded backyard. It's unsightly and difficult to go out in without getting mud all over yourself. And if you have pets, you won't want to let them out in waterlogged terrain, which may change your schedule, as you'll need to walk them more, and affect their ability to play. For kids, a flooded backyard can mean getting stuck indoors.

Sometimes, water can come in from your neighbors' yards and into yours as well. Luckily, you can do a few things to block the water and stop your backyard from flooding.

Build a Berm

If you have a big enough backyard, you may want to consider building a berm or a small hill that will divert water. Make sure you have a plan for where the water will flow to. You should consider artificial turf or other surfaces that are easier to maintain, as mowing grass on the hill could be cumbersome.

Use a Dry Well

If space permits, you can also consider building a dry well in your yard. If you make a berm, you can angle it to drive water toward this area. Simply put, a dry well is a hole in the ground.

It's usually dry, but it as the name implies it can store built-up water in times of heavy rain. If you're not building a berm, put the dry well where puddles collect, or near where water runs off your roof.

French Drain

If you don't want to add a dry well but still want to divert your water underground, your other option is to add a French drain. The drain is an underground pipe that collects the water.

To install a French drain, you'll have to dig a trench from your home to the street. Next, you will have to bury a pipe in the trench and cover it with pea gravel. Use a flexible pipe. You can top the finished product with grass or turf.

french drain pipe in gravel between concrete slabs

Grade the Area

Grading the area will often require the help of a pro. Still, this may be necessary if your flooded yard is causing basement or crawl spaces to flood as well. Your yard should slope at least 2% away from your house.

A yard without a slope leads to water pooling. You can change the grade by spreading topsoil in low areas in your yard.

Patios and Walkways

If you have a patio or walkway in your hand, it may sit lower than the rest of the yard. This can lead to water building up on the patio or walkway and, depending on the weather, can take a long time to disappear.

To fix this, you may want to raise the patio or sidewalk above the surrounding ground level.

You can also add a storm drain around the patio or walkway to combat the problem. Install the drain along the area with the lowest slope. A French drain is a popular option for this.

Replace Surfaces

Surfaces like concrete are like a magnet for water. Instead, use pavers or gravel. It may be expensive to change out all your concrete but be worth it in the long run. You could also consider waiting until your next big yard improvement project to do this.

gravel landscaping next to a garden

Sump Pump

Nobody wants the area near their home to flood. This can be especially concerning if you have basement windows near areas that flood as water can collect, seep into your house, and flood your basement. A flooded basement can be expensive to fix.

One way to protect your foundation is by installing a sump pump. Place it beneath the window. The sump pump will, as its name suggests, pump water away from your house. Make sure the battery is always charged, or consider getting one with a built-in backup battery.

Rain Garden

If you can't beat them, join them. This common expression can be applied to backyard flooding. You can actually turn areas of your yard that are frequently flooded into rain gardens. Rain gardens are gardens with plants that need standing water.

Go to your local gardening store and ask them for suggestions on what plants to use. Some of the plant options are actually quite pretty and can bring some uniqueness to your backyard.