Exterior drain systems make sense Anytime you can divert water away from a structure and keep it from entering a St. Louis area structure, it's a good thing. As standard practice, whenever possible, we provide drain replacement/repair anytime we have the exterior of the home excavated to install wall anchors or foundation piers. Keep in mind however, that exterior drain systems must be maintained (cleaned out) to work properly over time.
Another key feature of addressing drainage in the exterior is by utilizing grading techniques to divert the surface water away from the structure. The water from roofs and all paved surfaces like patios, sidewalks and driveways must not be allowed to discharge or collect near the house. This water must be collected and piped to the lowest part of the building lot away from the house.
There has to be positive drainage away from the house foundation. The building code, which is a MINIMUM standard, states that in the first ten feet of horizontal distance away from a foundation, the grade must drop 6 inches. We frequently see landscapers or homeowners who pile mulch around foundation plantings. This mulch creates dams and can cause ponding of rainwater around a foundation.
Installing an exterior drainage system requires digging up the area around the foundation and rebuilding it similar to a new house installation. It also requires digging up shrubs and other obstacles around the house. Again when the structure is excavated to repair the foundation, it is the perfect time to address the exterior drains.
Exteriors can sometimes be drained to daylight or into the open depending on the slope of the terrain. Many times the ground around the structure won't allow for that, so a sump pump can be utilized to pump the water away from the structure.
A careful check of your gutter system will identify problems that can be corrected very easily. Your gutters should discharge or route the water away from the foundation at least 8-10 feet. We offer several solutions to help with this including discharge extensions, and underground discharge extensions.