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Does the soil surrounding your home have the right moisture levels? Foundation irrigation may come with enormous benefits for your home. Doing it the proper way can lower the risk of expensive foundation repairs.

The reason is simple. Many soil processes are linked to foundation issues. The right irrigation techniques can counter these natural forces. As a result, Jim Oursler of Granite Foundation explains, you’ll enjoy a more stable foundation for your home.

In this article, you’ll learn about the top tips for irrigating your home’s foundation. Following these suggestions means you’ll enjoy the benefits of a more resilient and stable foundation.

How does watering your foundation help anything?

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If you haven’t heard about foundation irrigation before, the whole topic may seem a bit confusing. Why would you want to water a foundation? Your home isn’t exactly a plant that would grow bigger or produce yield.

While that’s entirely true, your home’s foundation does need stable soil beneath it. Foundations are well-balanced and sturdy. But there are certain scenarios that threaten this stability.

Droughts pose a big problem for foundations. Dry ground, especially consisting of clay soil, contacts and provides less support for your foundation. The result is simple but severe. Your foundation starts to sink.

The situation may become more complex when the soil contracts in an uneven fashion. As a result, your foundation could sink in various directions on different levels. Returning moisture to the soil could create further problems.

When you look at the consequences and costly repairs, it’s unsurprising that homeowners resort to irrigation. Ultimately, it’s about preserving the moisture of the soil and the integrity of your foundation.

What are the top tips for irrigating a foundation?

Now, we’ll take a look at practical tips for your foundation watering project.

#1: Grow more plants around your home

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Having more plants around your home’s foundation is beneficial for irrigation. Here are some of the main reasons for this:

  • Plant growth moderates the soil temperature.
  • The soil surrounding your home gets extra shade from the plants. This effectively combats any surplus evaporation of soil moisture.
  • Growing plants around the foundation contribute to less soil erosion.
  • When you add mulch under your plants, you’ll further reduce the moisture evaporation.

#2: Create an irrigation zone for your foundation

Do you have a watering system? Dedicating a special irrigation zone for your foundation is an excellent idea. Consistent watering in this dedicated zone decreases the risk of foundation trouble.

A drip watering system is your best option for the foundation irrigation project. Namely, a drip system moisturizes the soil surrounding your foundation at a slow rate. Using a dedicated zone works well because mixed zones create challenges due to different water needs for all your plants.

#3: Find the right time for irrigation

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Homeowners who are trying out the irrigation method are often unsure about the best timing. You should start watering your foundation when your yard begins to dry up.

Find the line between the soil and your home’s foundation. Under normal circumstances, the dirt should stay firmly against the foundation. But in dry conditions, the soil pulls away from the foundation.

This unhealthy process creates a gap between the foundation and the surrounding dry soil. You could even slip a finger into that space. The contraction clearly demonstrates that it’s time to act and bring moisture back to the area.

#4: Use a soaker hose for your foundation

One approach you could take is installing a soaker hose irrigation around your home. Make sure that the hose is placed around 10 to 16 inches away from your foundation. Plus, this system should be connected to the outdoor faucet.

Always check that your outdoor faucet has a backflow preventer. Do this before you connect the soaker hose to the faucet. Taking this important step ensures that dirty water won’t re-enter your home.

Another thing to check is whether the soaker hose has a pressure restrictor. When it doesn’t have a restrictor, regulate the faucet in a way that the water comes out at a gentle and steady pace.

The bottom line: irrigating your home’s foundation

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Foundation trouble is costly and time-consuming. There are many concerns regarding the health of your home’s foundation. One of the biggest worries centers on the moisture levels in the surrounding soil.

Drying and uneven moisture levels increase the risk of a sinking foundation. The resulting cracks and loss of integrity may need expensive repairs. That’s why you should irrigate your foundation to prevent serious issues.

Here are the top strategies for foundation irrigation:

  • Check whether your foundation needs urgent watering.
  • Create a designated irrigation zone for the foundation.
  • Grow and water more plants around your home.
  • Try out a soaker hose or drip watering system.

Written by Jim Oursler of Granite Foundation Repair