When most people think of erosion, they think about dried-up lakes or the Grand Canyon as natural phenomena. However, erosion can hit much closer to home than you think, and may even affect your home’s foundation.
Homes in Georgia are no stranger to erosion, as it’s one of the wettest states in the U.S. coming in at 60 inches of precipitation per year, compared to the national average of 44.3. This rainy weather works overtime to wash out the soil in your landscape and around your home’s foundation.
Though you can’t influence the weather, making sure your gutters are in top shape will help ensure your soil and foundation remain mostly unscathed. Read more to find out the problem signs of foundation erosion, and how AquaGuard’s premium gutter systems can help you prevent them.
Signs that You Have Foundation Erosion
- Your Gutters Are Damaged Or Malfunctioning
The purpose of gutters is to aid in draining rainwater far away from your home’s foundation. When this vital water management system is broken, clogged, or nonexistent, you may notice an uptick in erosion around your home.
In addition to having functioning gutters, your downspout should also be properly placed and draining away from the home. If your downspout is clogged or placed too close to your foundation, it can defeat the purpose of having gutters.
- Cracks In The Concrete Around Your Home
If you’re noticing cracking, pitting, spalling, and heaving of your concrete, the soil below is likely experiencing erosion. As water wears down the soil around and beneath your concrete, it can create air pockets that jeopardize the strength of your walkways.
- Bare Spots In Your Landscape
If there’s an area in your lawn that struggles to grow anything, it could be a sign of erosion. Bare patches of soil without grass could indicate poor drainage capabilities due to unhealthy drainage of water in your yard.
In eastern areas of Georgia closer to the coastline, soil with sandy properties is the norm. While all soil types can experience erosion, sand is the most vulnerable. If your yard is looking drier and more bare than usual, erosion is likely at play.
- Your Yard Develops a Negative Grade
A healthy landscape around a foundation should include a positive grade. Positive yard grading means that any slight slope will point in the opposite direction of your home, so that when it rains, water will naturally drain away.
When your home isn’t equipped with functioning exterior drainage systems, water from your roof can overwhelm your yard and change its grading from positive to negative. Negative grading is when water flows to your home instead of away, amplifying foundation erosion and even flooding your basement or crawl space.
- Your Foundation Is Exposed
The final and most obvious sign that you’re experiencing foundation erosion is if your foundation is exposed. You may notice a visible decline in the height of the soil around your home, and even residual markings of where the height of the soil used to be.
Exposed brick or cinderblock is a telltale sign that erosion has taken root in your yard. If you spot any of these problem signs, it’s time to take action with AquaGuard’s water management solutions.
Tips For Stopping Soil Erosion Around Your Foundation & Yard
To ensure that poor draining water pooling around your foundation doesn’t seep into your home’s interior, basement owners may consider installing a French drain system. Puddles form around your yard and foundation because the soil becomes so overwhelmed with water that it can’t drain it away.
French drains are perforated drainage pipes buried beneath ground that soak up water and redirect it away from your home. This type of drainage system is best for homeowners with basements, as it can also help combat leakage.
As mentioned before, having gutters is only a benefit if the downspout is strategically placed far enough away from your home. Downspout extensions are the best way to ensure that water is draining far from your foundation.
By doing a small soil excavation, installers bury gutter downspout extensions shallow in your yard, and snake the extensions to a safe drainage spot. This solution is extremely discreet, and key to owning your home’s water management.
GutterGuards are one of the most proactive solutions for clogged gutters, and ultimately will aid in preventing soil erosion around your home. A perforated cover goes atop your gutters with holes large enough to allow water to flow, but small enough to block debris from gathering.
GutterGuards prevent not only clogs in your gutter, but mold, pests, and of course erosion by ensuring that your gutters are doing their sole job.
Frequently asked questions – Exterior Erosion
Splashguard stones can be a helpful tool to prevent small scale erosion of your homes siding and soil. If splash guards still don’t do the trick, it’s time to consider a downspout extension.
Downspout extensions relocate the opening of the gutter conduit to a further location, so it can’t erode down the important structures of your home.
The most common cause for gutter leakage is clogging. As debris builds up in your gutters, it stops water from flowing through to the downspout, forcing it to exit over the side of the gutter or to exert weight on the gutter joints, breaking them.
Gutters can also wear down over time through rusting, or by being broken down by pests. The best way to prevent gutter clogs is to clean out your gutters at least twice a year. You should clean your gutters more often if you have large trees near them.
Well-functioning gutters control the flow of water from your roof to a safe place far away from the sides of your home. When gutters are clogged, broken or overwhelmed, rainwater overflows or leaks through the side of the gutter, causing water damage to the side of your home, potentially leaking into your basement or crawl space, and wearing away the soil around your foundation.
AquaGuard Is Your Gutter Guide
Gutters are one of the most vital components of your soil’s health. At AquaGuard, our job is to help keep your gutters in the best shape to protect your home and foundation. Call us today for a free, whole-home inspection where we’ll target the root of your gutter problems. We’re proud to provide you with a no-obligation quote and a game plan for how we can fortify your home.
Schedule your first appointment with us, today!