yard grading

5 Steps to Grading Your Yard for Proper Drainage

Water damage and moisture issues may occur anytime whenever heavy rain and precipitation flow towards your home. 

Bad drainage could also lead you to your worst nightmare – heavy flooding.

That is why grading your yard right away is important for proper drainage. Read on to learn how to grade properly to prevent water damage in your household.

Yard Grading 101: A Step-by-Step Guide

Leveling or grading the yard in your home requires quite an extensive amount of labor. If you aren’t skilled or experienced enough in doing so, make sure to contact your local contractor.

1. Plan and Check for Potential Problems

Do a comprehensive inspection and planning of your house and yard before proceeding with the project. 

  • Refer to the local digging guidelines in your area and obtain the necessary permits. 
  • Check all your pipes and create window wells for basement windows.
  • Mark utility lines such as water, gas, telephone, and electric lines. The marks will prevent you from rupturing them during the digging process. 
  • Identify the nearest drainage area in your property that you’d like the water to flow.
  • Order the right amount of dirt. You might need more during the process, so it’s better to order it in bulk.

2. Find the High and Low Points

As you inspect and walk around your property, you can figure out, measure, and mark the highest and lowest points in your yard to know exactly how much slope you have. 

When marking the high and low points, take note of the following reminders:

  • The ground should slope away from your house or foundation in all directions dropping at least 2 or 3 inches for every 10 feet
  • The maximum slope of a lawn should be 12 inches for every 4 feet. 

3. Determine the level grade line

Once you’ve marked your high and low points, you need to establish the level grade line so you’ll know how much leveling work you’d do. The level grade line consists of the horizontal distance and the vertical distance.

You can measure the horizontal distance by putting one stake each at the highest and lowest point. Connect the two stakes with a string at a perfect level, then measure.

To get the vertical distance, measure the stake at your low point all the way from the string straight down to the ground.

4. Fill dirt at your low point

grading a yard using a rake

Now you can use the pile of dirt that you’ve ordered. Using a wheelbarrow, fill the piles of dirt at your low points to raise them higher. 

Your goal is to keep water away from your home, so make sure to fill dirt taller than your slope and against your foundation.

Smooth the grade using a rake, so the soil lies evenly. You can use a piece of plywood or tamper to pack the dirt down softly.

5. Plant New Grass Seed

After stamping the soil, you can now plant new grass in your yard. Here’s how you can complete this project:

  • Toss some seeds over the freshly graded dirt
  • Spread the seeds lightly with the rake to set them in the dirt
  • Soak the dirt
  • Cover the seedlings with some hay to hide them from the birds. This step also helps in retaining the moisture in the soil.
  • Soak the yard with water again. Daily watering will help the grass grow better.

Grade Your Yard Now!

Water damage can be very stressful, but you can prevent it through yard grading. 

Do keep in mind that land grading isn’t for everyone. It can cause troubles and injuries to anyone with little to no experience.

If you’re near Prescott, Specialty Grading is here to serve you.

Give us a call first to experience our first-class excavation and grading services.

Got any questions about keeping healthy drainage in your house? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts!

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