Updated: Apr 2, 2019
Drainage and grading
We get some serious rain storms here in Tucson during the monsoon season with tons of water coming down in a short time period. All this water must have clear paths to flow away from your house to where it cannot cause any damage.
For this reason, the landscaping around your house should have drainage channels and proper grading to direct water away from your house. Drainage channels refer to the pathways around your house designed to carry rain water away from the house and to designated runoffs. Grading refers to the ground around your house and how its pitch directs rain water.
If the ground around your house is level, or (worse) pitched towards the house, then it has neutral or negative grading and lacks drainage channels. This means that rain water will accumulate near the house or flow towards the house. This can result in major damage to your house.
One possible result is water getting into your house at the bottom of the walls and at doorways. This can ruin drywall and carpets, damage wood framing, and cause mold. Another result is uneven settling and eventual structural damage. Both are very expensive to repair.
To avoid these issues, put an annual reminder on your calendar for April to inspect your drainage and grading by doing the following:
* Monitor the area around your house to ensure water can easily flow away from the house.
* Inspect any swales to ensure they are clear and directing water away from the house.
* Check any drain holes in yard walls to ensure they are clear and allow water to pass
through them unhindered.
* Examine drain pipes to ensure that they are clear and don’t have any damage or blockages.
* Verify that downspouts from gutters extend away from the foundation to ensure they cannot wash out the ground near the foundation.
Home maintenance tips courtesy of Desert Diamond Home Inspections. For the full-length version of these tips and other useful home maintenance recommendations, visit https://desertdiamondhomeinspections.com/home-inspectors-blog/.