Winter months are approaching, and though Southern California homeowners don’t have to contend with snow and the issues it brings, the cold weather still affects how homeowners should treat their property. While thoughts of insulation are certainly obvious when it comes to the temperatures cooling down, an important area of home maintenance that needs to be attended to is yard drainage. Today we’re going to break down how to get your yard and drainage system prepared for the winter months, as well as common winter drainage problems to avoid so that your property is in top shape during every season.
Related: Yard Drainage Maintenance Guide
Preparing your yard for winter
Fall is in the air and winter is on the horizon, which means it’s time for some yard cleaning. But where to begin? There are a number of areas you can address to make sure your yard will be prepared for winter. To facilitate smooth drainage, be sure to clean out your gutters and remove any fallen debris or blockage. Clogged gutters can easily become a source of costly and unnecessary hassle, while they can also lead to water damage if not properly cleaned. Next, be sure to drain your outside spigots by turning off water from inside the home. To take an extra precaution, you can also insulate any exterior faucets.
Other general yard maintenance steps include power washing all outside surfaces in order to remove the dirt from the summer. You should also verify that your outdoor lighting system is fully functioning. Another important step for winter lawn care is fertilizing the lawn and making sure that any irrigation systems are properly drained. Overall the goal is to best preserve your yard, protect your existing landscape, and avoid drainage failure that could affect the yard come spring.
Yard drainage maintenance 101
Yard drainage is a necessary component of a healthy property. Clogged drainage systems can lead to a host of hassles for the homeowner. While you’re preparing your yard for the winter, it’s important to focus extra attention on keeping your drains unclogged and fully functioning. In addition to clearing debris out of the drains, you will need to regularly snake drains if they become clogged. By inserting a slender auger into the plumbing system, or getting a professional to do this for you, clogs can be dislodged to facilitate a smooth flow and unobstructed drainage system.
When inspecting your drainage system, it’s also important to ensure that your grates and pipes aren’t damaged or broken in any way. If you notice punctured, broken, damaged, or missing parts of any pipes or grates, then you should get them fixed right away, especially before the colder part of the year begins. Lastly, whatever you do, never use chemicals. When it comes to yard drainage, it’s never a good idea to use chemicals. That means if you have a drain that you cannot unclog on your own without chemical intervention, it’s time to call in the professionals. Attempting to use chemicals on your drain will only make the problem worse.
Anticipating winter yard problems
While many wait for their yards to thaw out in the spring before addressing drainage issues, there is absolutely no reason to wait if you want your property to look its best while avoiding any damage. Since winter weather can be unpredictable even in Southern California, it’s important to prepare your yard ahead of time for anything that nature might have to offer. The process of water getting cold and thawing out that occurs during winter can lead to winter yard flooding, which is why it’s essential to have a fully functioning drainage system in the event of this occurring.
Improper drainage in the winter can lead to a ruined yard in the spring if the yard isn’t able to properly drain itself during the cooler months. While no one wishes to see their landscape and vegetation ruined, an even more serious issue can occur if the drainage system is not adequately addressed. With the possibility of basement flooding due to a faulty drainage system, your foundation could become seriously damaged during the winter months. Improperly drained water can enter into tiny cracks in the foundation after seeping into the ground around the home. If frozen, the water can then expand and widen the cracks, causing even more water to enter the home when it thaws out. This process can repeat itself and lead to foundation damage, which can require extensive repair solutions in order to preserve the integrity of the home.
Related: Yard Drainage Problems During Winter
Addressing winter drainage problems
While you can set your yard up for success by following the aforementioned tips for preparing your property, there are also steps you can take during the winter to make sure that everything is functioning smoothly. If water thaws, ensure that it is sloped away from sides of your home and isn’t able to enter through the cracks. It is highly recommended that you routinely inspect your drainage system to make sure that it remains unobstructed.
Some problems can be prevented by vigilance and routine maintenance, but there are other issues that may require professional help. In addition to foundation damage due to water, which should never be taken lightly, the two biggest winter drainage risks include plant damage and water entering the building through the driveway. Excess water caused by pooling due to a faulty drainage system can kill plants, causing your curb appeal to plummet. Additionally, water entering the property through the driveway can lead to personal property damage. Fortunately, these problems can be avoided by having the right drainage system installed to meet your yard’s unique needs.
Related: Drainage Solutions
Is your drainage system in top shape? Are you prepared for the impact that winter months can have on your property?
Whether your drainage system is experiencing flaws or you wish to install a new system altogether, California Foundation Works is here to get the job done in order to protect your property. Our team of expert contractors are happy to repair or install any drainage system that suits your needs and desires while working within your budget. From sump pumps to French drains to drain boxes and catch basins, if you want it, we can install it!
Call today to book your free property inspection and get started on discussing your drainage options.