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How to Manage Water Drainage and Irrigation

how to manage drainage and irrigation

The arrival of spring means that cold weather is a thing of the past…that is, until next year. As most homeowners know, that’s not totally good news. There’s some work you have to do as the average temperature rises. Otherwise, all that melting snow and those proverbial spring showers will cause leaks in your house and ruin your careful landscaping. You need to drain and irrigate efficiently to avoid water damage that could potentially cost you thousands of dollars. Here’s a guide on how to manage your property’s water drainage and irrigation.

In the Gutter

leaves in the gutter

Image via Flickr by mikecogh

Perhaps the most pressing concern in spring is your gutter system. It’s your primary source of exterior drainage. When a problem exists here, you’ll discover it quickly, since your roof is likely to leak in such a scenario. That’s an expensive problem. Your goal should be to set up a drainage pipe system that carries the water off the roof and safely away from your home.

You can determine the best method for your home by checking the invert level from the ground. Perform a bit of detective work to discover the location of your downspout. Take note of where it currently directs water. Are you satisfied with the output? If not, you need to re-route the water flow from your gutters to the drain pipes to prevent future leakage issues.

Remember that you may need to clean your gutters first before you can determine the drainage output. You can then direct the runoff into a rain garden or storm drain. If that’s not enough immediate water dispersal, consider a trench drain or a French drain on the ground nearby instead.

Sustaining Your Property

Image via Flickr by Field Outdoor Spaces

An excellent way to manage precipitation runoff is to use patio pavers. These landscaping bricks provide homeowners with the ability to direct the flow of water runoff. Since they’re thicker and stronger than bricks, they hold up better under wet weather conditions.

To improve your water regulation with pavers, simply line them in the best way to push water away from the house. If water pools near the foundation, it’ll erode the base of the dwelling. Well-ordered pavers don’t just relocate the water, though. They also offer a better aesthetic and are easier to walk on than grass, giving them additional benefits beyond drainage.

Irrigating Your Garden

Image via Flickr by Karen Roe

Image via Flickr by Karen Roe

Protecting your garden isn’t quite as important as directing water away from your roof, but for those of us with a green thumb, it still matters. After all, your front yard and garden are the first things guests see when they pull into your driveway. You take pride in knowing that the lush vegetation augments the outside of your home, enhancing the overall aesthetic. For this reason, it’s imperative that you control the flow of water during the spring when the issue is most prominent.

You’ll want to familiarize yourself with the various garden water drainage and irrigation solutions available. Picking the right one will require a lot of research, since it’s such a crucial decision. Otherwise, you’re as likely to exacerbate your garden surface water drainage issues as solve them. Here are some drainage and irrigation options to consider.

Soaker Hose System

Image via Flickr by cogdogblog

Image via Flickr by cogdogblog

One of the most efficient irrigation solutions for your garden is the soaker hose system. This is one of the smartest options, since it turns the problem into the solution. Some systems can store the excess water your garden receives from melted snow and rain then deliver it in drip tubing throughout the garden. You typically connect soaker hoses to your spigots, but the process works the same in terms of yard drainage.

The hoses have tiny holes in the perforated drainage pipe, and they’ll keep your vegetation lush. Since the drain tile system controls the water dispersal, it’s extremely efficient. Plus, it delivers water straight to the roots, the most effective strategy. The downside is that they’re susceptible to kinks in the line. If you fail to discover those in a timely fashion, the roots you think are receiving water could die from dehydration.

Drip Irrigation

how to manage water drainage - drip irrigation

If you want to handle water flow at the soil level, drip irrigation is the superior choice. It employs a group of tubes that encircle the plants and drip water directly onto the soil surface or root zone. This allows the precise, instantaneous delivery of moisture where the plants need it most. Note that you’ll need to dedicate a spigot to this sort of irrigation system.

Drip irrigation offers the benefit of garden protection. Weeds won’t receive the hydration they need to survive. Similarly, there won’t be any muddy areas or other trouble spots that reduce the quality of plant growth. You’ll also use the water supply more efficiently and it’ll disperse more evenly. The negative is that it’s easy to install incorrectly. You may accidentally kill your plants through improper tube placement. It’ll also require periodic cleaning to avoid clogging issues that would be similarly destructive to your garden.

Harvesting Rainwater

manage water irrigation rainwater collection

A final irrigation option exists if you don’t like or can’t employ any of the others above. You may live in a region where running water isn’t readily available. In such conditions, rainwater harvesting is a viable solution. It captures precipitation and stores it for later usage. Then, the storage container purifies the water for human consumption. If you’re irrigating, however, you don’t even need that.

Instead, you’ll simply collect the water and distribute it directly to your plants. Also, you won’t have to rely on tap water once you’ve filled your storage container. The only downside is that you’ll need enough precipitation to keep a constant water supply. One way to help water drainage and manage irrigation is to direct the flow of water off your roof and into your rainwater collection reservoir. That way, you can simultaneously protect your roof and irrigate your lawn or garden.

rainwater drainage and collection

Handling water runoff doesn’t have to be difficult. You simply need to identify any potential issues that might arise during the wet months ahead and plan well. When you manage your drainage and employ efficient watering techniques, you’ll alleviate flooding concerns. In the process, you’ll potentially save yourself a great deal of money in home repairs.

Let us know if you have any questions about irrigation and drainage in the comments section below.

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