Your Ann Arbor ideal landscaping can be ruined easily by erosion caused by excess water from failing gutters. This water runoff can destroy flower beds, displace mulch and topsoil, and cause exterior concrete and pavers to shift and sink.
Controlling erosion from leaking gutters should be a top priority whenever discovered. Although the cause for the landscaping erosion can be varied, from holes and leaks to clogged gutters, landscaping erosion from damaged gutters is far more common than many homeowners may think.
If you’re experiencing a landscaping problem from failing gutters, the best thing to do is call the experts at Foundation Systems of Michigan. Our team can recommend the proper repair or replacement for your home to save both your lawn and landscaping, not to mention your home’s foundation.
Problems Caused By Untreated Landscape Erosion
Landscape erosion is easy to ignore the first or second time you notice it, but turning a blind eye for too long can have severe consequences for your yard and the health of your home. Below we’ll explore what can happen if repairs aren’t made.
Washing Away Flowers & Plants
It’s common for homes in the Detroit metro area to have plants or flowers planted near their foundations. However, when water dumps from gutters causing landscape erosion, your plants and flowers are easily washed away, requiring replanting or, in extreme cases, entirely new plants.
Altered Yard Grade
When your house was built, your yard should have been graded away from your home, so water runs down and away from your home’s foundation. However, with enough soil erosion, the grade can actually change. This shift, combined with the amount of water being dumped near your foundation, can cause serious structural issues if not addressed quickly.
Exterior Concrete & Pavers Shifting
Water erosion is a leading cause of sinking or uneven exterior concrete slabs and pavers in your driveway, sidewalks, or walkways. Water erosion causes voids under these areas; with no support available, the slabs or pavers sink and become uneven. Sinking and shifting slabs can be a tripping hazard, especially around a pool or for those less sure on their feet.
The best way to prevent landscape erosion, or the movement of topsoil and mulch, is to ensure your gutters are in good working order. Make sure your gutters are clean, free-flowing and check that your downspouts run far enough away from your home. In addition to your gutters, here are some tips that help you avoid landscape erosion.
- Remember to keep your soil covered each season. In addition, planting groundcover, grasses, and adding mulch can help preserve the health of your landscaping.
- Installing a retaining wall if your landscaping has any steep slopes helps prevent soil loss.
Again, without proper gutters, none of the other solutions can help with the excess rainwater that causes erosion.
Since leaks from gutters are the most common cause of erosion, it is important to understand why gutters leak in the first place.
Although cleaning your gutters can be dangerous and frustrating, ensuring your gutters are free of clogs is essential to stopping leaks. When gutter clogs prevent water from flowing, water has nowhere to go other than pouring over the top, landing on the ground below. Thus, causing dangerous erosion.
Cracks & Holes
Old gutters, or poor-quality gutters, can develop cracks due to rust or weather. Holes or cracks in gutters essentially render them useless since water dumps directly below instead of out and away from the home.
Similar to holes, when gutter pieces separate, a gap is created, and water pours directly next to your foundation. The force of this water falling can cause erosion and lead to serious foundation problems.
Gutters should be pitched at a specific angle to allow water to always flow downward and not allow water to pool in one spot. When pooling occurs, and additional water is added, often water spills over the top of the gutter.
Although investigating your gutters while it’s raining is not fun, it is one way to notice a problem. Look for water dripping beneath the gutter, as well as water spilling over the top. This same process can be performed using two people and running a garden hose through the gutter.
The first thing to do before fixing the soil below is ensure your gutters are in good working order so the problem won’t occur again. Having a professional repair or replace leaking gutters means that once the erosion work is done, you won’t repeat the exercise the next time it rains.
Once the gutters are repaired, it’s time to focus on the damage below. Of course, replanting is an option, but consider what is being planted. Increasing the amount of plants absorbs more water and can update your current landscaping design. Mulch is also beneficial to absorbing water.
Adding a retaining wall can be helpful since it helps to break up the slope and level the land. A landscaping company is your best option when redesigning your yard while keeping water management tenants in mind.
Let The Experts at FSM Fix Your Gutter System
Foundation Systems of Michigan is the leading water management company in Michigan. FSM has been repairing southeast Michigan homes for nearly 15 years, from basement waterproofing and foundation repair to gutters. Your landscape erosion problems are not new for the trained professionals; they have seen and done it all. Our specialized custom gutters made on-site, ensure the best possible solution for your landscape erosion problem. Call or contact us for a free inspection. Our team will do a complete inspection and offer an obligation-free quote to repair your solution.