Can A Dry Lawn Damage Your Foundation?

Watering your soil won’t damage your foundation. If you let your soil dry out too much, your foundation will be exposed to more hydrostatic pressure.

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Rain in the Virginia Beach, VA, area is almost guaranteed to build hydrostatic pressure up near your foundation. By that metric, drier weather should be a boon to your home. 

Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. If you don’t actively take care of your lawn, drier weather could bring about as much foundation damage as Virginia’s rainy season. 

dry soil affects foundation walls

Luckily, the waterproofing measures you use to protect your home from heavy rains will also protect your home from shrinking soil. How does a dry lawn put your foundation at risk? 

Dry Soil, Leaking Home: The Connection 

 Most homeowners who are concerned about their lawn’s hydrostatic pressure believe that overwatering their lawn can cause foundation damage. This isn’t actually the case. As it turns out, your home is at a greater risk of foundation damage if you let your lawn dry out too much. 

There are times when you can’t control how much water your yard gets. If you’re living through a drought, for example, all you can do is set up sprinklers and hope for the best. 

If you have more control of your yard’s hydration you’ll want to try and keep it well-watered. This doesn’t mean leaving it damp all the time – if you do, you risk mosquitoes – but rather watering it frequently enough to keep the soil healthy. 

Soil that isn’t watered frequently enough actually shrinks in size. As that soil shrinks, it leaves more open gaps beneath your home. Your foundation can then sink into these spaces. In the same breath, water can more readily fill these spaces when it does eventually rain. As your soil particles will be too small to take in as much water as they normally would, your foundation will be exposed to more water – and hydrostatic pressure – than it would on an average day. 

As such, a dry lawn tends to provoke more foundation damage than a damp lawn. 

Preventing Foundation Damage Around Your Home 

The good news is that there are dozens of ways to protect your foundation from unnecessary water damage during a drought. Some of the best ways include: 

  • Clear your drains 

It’s always a good idea to make sure the drainage systems around your home are clear of obstacles and debris. If your drains end up clogged, water will linger in your home and cause more damage than it would normally. 

  • Water your lawn 

While you don’t want to overwater your lawn, you do want to try and take care of it during the drier months of the year. You can do this through multiple means. If you don’t want to install a sprinkler system, you can water your perimeter manually. Alternatively, you can set up irrigation systems throughout your lawn to infrequently ensure it receives the water it needs to thrive. 

  • Use dry wells

Dry wells work to deliberately redirect water away from your home. Contractors can dig a hole in the ground a reasonable distance away from your home. They can then fill this well with gravel and direct any drainage systems you might have into it. When it does storm, water will gather in your dry well instead of in your foundation, limiting the amount of hydrostatic pressure your home has to endure. 

  • Invest in sub-surface drainage 

When in doubt, you’ll want to take steps to waterproof your foundation. This can include installing sub-surface drainage like downspouts. With this drainage system out of the way, you can rest assured that any water gathering near your home is directed toward a safer spot.  

  • Install interior drainage

When the rains come, you don’t want to be caught off-guard by leaking water. Make sure your basement’s interior is protected by a specially designed drainage system. The BasementGutter™ system intercepts and collects water that may leak through the walls and floor. This water is then directed to drain to a sump pump system so it can be removed from your basement. 

Reach Out to The Professionals 

 Know that you never have to try and protect your foundation on your own. You can always reach out to the professional foundation and basement repair contractors working in Virginia Beach, VA, for guidance. These professionals can help you inspect your home for damage. Afterward, they can provide you with an individual free quote noting how much it may cost to implement waterproofing solutions around your home. They’ll also let you know how much repairs might cost. 

It’s always a good idea to repair your foundation if it’s been damaged by hydrostatic pressure. Don’t wait to get started! 

JES Service Area Map

Service Areas

HAMPTON ROADS & NE NC

1741 Corporate Landing Pkwy
Virginia Beach, VA 23454

NORTHERN VA & DC

8122 Bethlehem Rd
Manassas, VA 20109

MARYLAND

1250 Reames Rd
Middle River, MD 21220

CENTRAL VIRGINIA

2410 Southland Dr
Chester, VA 23831

WESTERN VIRGINIA

456 Old Courthouse Rd
Appomattox, VA 24522

SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA

1401 Southside Dr
Salem, VA 24153

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