Saturday, January 30, 2010

Correcting Water Drainage in Front Of Garage Doors

While doing my daily morning routine, which consists of drinking coffee to bring me out of that comatose state as well as working my way through 30-40 e-mails that I receive every night.  Saturday morning I came across a video (wich can be seen on our Facebook page) on DoItYourself.com that explained a situation with a driveway that was higher than the garage floor.  Because the driveway was higher, it created a problem where water was frequently pooling in front of the garage door.  This allowed water to flow into the garage instead of away from it, as well as it was rotting the garage door, surrounding trim, and the siding.  This is an all too common problem with older homes and we see it frequently.  This problem usually occurs because the driveway has been repaved once or twice over the years and this raises the level of the driveway in comparison to the garage floor.

In this video, they marked a straight line in front of the garage door approximately 3' out from the garage.  They cut the asphalt driveway with a cut-off saw and removed the asphalt and disposed of it.  The gravel base underneath the asphalt driveway was sufficient enough to allow them the install concrete brick pavers right over the existing gravel without any changes to the sub-base.  I liked the concept of what they were doing as an economical fix to this specific drainage situation, but I did not like the idea that the water was allowed to drain and stay right at the foundation of the garage.  We would never allow water to drain like this around the foundation of the home, why would we do it in front of the garage.

If homeowners have this problem, which many do with older homes in the city.  I would rather see the homeowner install permeable pavers which allows the rainwater to drain extremely fast.  I would also like to see them excavate the area and install clean, crushed drainage rock underneath the pavers and install perforated (perforated means with holes) SDR-35 Sewer Pipe to remove the water from the affected drainage area.  Although, I must also point out that this water must be removed to somewhere away from the foundation of the garage.  This water could be drained away from the garage to a rain garden, a slope graded away from the garage, or any number of better choices.

Because our mid-Michigan soils contain so much clay content, which does not provide any drainage.  It is always good to err on the side of caution and install it correctly.  This will also add value to your property, especially if you are looking to sell your home in the future.  I would also reccomend that during this drainage correction installation that some sort of filter fabric be installed underneath the pipe and drainage stone, this will keep any movement of small soil particles from washing into the system and help keep the drainage stone clean.  I would also recommend installing a layer of geogrid within the stone base to assist with the structure of the stone underneath the pavers.

If you are experiencing these sort of problems with drainage in front of your garage or near your house, I would like to point out that Landscape Labor Solutions would love to assist you with exploring options to correct your drainage situation.  We invite you to check out our Drainage & Grading Solutions webpage at www.mylaborsolutions.com/Drainage---Grading-Solutions.html.  Our talented and skilled landscape laborers have extensive experience in dealing with this sort of drainage challenges.

15 comments:

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  3. Yeah just watched the video which you have mentioned about garage doors. It is really helpful. Thanks for sharing!

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  5. Garage doors should be higher than the driveway to avoid the water pooling inside your garage. Anyway, thanks to the tip. It really help me a lot.

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