How subsoil drainage can fix a soggy backyard


If your backyard resembles a waterlogged marsh after heavy rains, it may benefit from a subsoil drainage system.

When it pours and the rain doesn’t drain away, water collects because it has nowhere to go. Saturated soil cannot move water in the ground fast enough to make way for surface water to trickle through. Excess water can wreak havoc on your backyard and home, killing plants and damaging masonry and brickwork.

The solution is to create an easy way for water in the ground to flow so that surface water can percolate through. This is where having experienced plumbers install subsoil drainage comes in.

Why improve subsoil drainage?

  • Protects foundations and buildings
  • Prevents water pools and damage
  • Reduces soil erosion
  • Maintains a healthier landscape

What is subsoil drainage?

Subsoil drainage systems can protect homes and gardens by removing excess water to prevent flooding and stopping the deluge from flowing back to your property. If the water sinks back to your house, it can cause a lot of damage.

The most common type of subsoil drainage is an underground pipe made from a porous material. The pipe has numerous holes to allow water to seep through, while the permeable material serves as a barrier that prevents soils and debris from entering and causing a blockage. Rocks and pebbles are also sometimes used to filter the water. In some instances, re-levelling the land may be an effective way to channel water away from the property and eliminate moisture build-up underground.

A slotted pipe used for subsoil drainage

How can subsoil drainage help your property?

Too much water in your backyard can lead to several problems. Waterlogged soils cut off the air supply to plant roots and reduce their ability to take up nutrients. This can lead to rotting roots, yellow leaves, stunted growth and death. Then there are puddles. More than just an eyesore, they provide breeding grounds for bacteria, mosquitos and other insects, which is a health risk. Excess moisture also acts as a welcome mat for vermin.

A subsoil drainage system will not only provide your plants and garden with a healthy environment but will also protect your home. Without a permeable drain through which water can escape standing water can seep beneath a home’s foundation, causing the soil to subside and the foundation to crack. That could result in expensive foundation repairs. Without the right insurance to cover you, this will be a significant out-of-pocket expense.

The Benefits of subsoil drainage

When it comes to ensuring that excess water drains properly from your backyard, subsoil drainage comes with a host of benefits:

  1. Protects foundations and your home: Subsoil drainage increases the stability of the footings of a building and reduces foundation movements due to soil moisture content.
  2. Prevents water pools: With water draining away, it doesn’t accumulate on the surface. This is an effective way to keep the mosquitos at bay and protect your family from health risks.
  3. Minimises soil erosion: Your soil is at risk of erosion during periods of heavy rains. Although erosion is a natural process where soil and nutrients are displaced by wind, rain and gravity, it occurs at an accelerated rate in saturated soils. This is a problem because it washes away the nutrient-rich topsoil as well as spoiling the look of your landscape. A quality drainage system will direct water away from the yard.
  4. Improves soil quality and maintains a healthier landscape: Properly drained soil increases aeration, vital for maintaining healthy plant roots. It will also increase the strength of the earth by reducing the moisture content. Healthy soil means a healthy garden.
  5. Can increase your home’s value. Proper subsoil drainage ensures your foundations are protected and the property looks more attractive with a yard that’s not full of muddy puddles. Moreover, subsoil drainage installations can be used as a selling point to push up your home’s value if you decide to sell.

Where to install subsoil drainage on properties?

When it comes to designing and installing a subsoil drainage system, it’s best to leave everything to specialist plumbers. Every property is different, and they will consider several factors to come up with the right customised solution specific to each home. Chief among them will be where to put the system. Among the considerations are:

To stop water from getting close to the foundations, the system should be installed around the perimeter of a property.

Subsoil systems should be installed above natural water tables because it is only the surface water, not the groundwater, that needs to be drained away.

Pipes have to be installed a safe distance away from tree roots that might otherwise grow into them and cause blockages.

Positioning pipes in the lower ends of the garden to help stop water from accumulating.

If there is a retaining wall, the system should be located behind it to relieve the pressure from the water. Most retaining walls are impervious barriers that don’t let water pass. They are built with a specific capacity in mind. However, if there’s no drainage, pressure builds up and causes cracks. If the pressure is consistent, the wall can buckle.

Subsoil drainage in a property File ID: 90611392 

Need a subsoil drainage expert?

If you’re concerned about water damage to your backyard and home, consider installing a subsoil drainage system now. Subsoil drainage is a specialised area that requires a trained and licensed expert to protect the natural and structural components of your home.

Here at GSM Plumbing, we are subsoil drainage experts specialising in protecting homes and buildings from water intrusion due to rain. We have years of experience designing and installing residential and commercial subsoil drainage systems and understand that each backyard and garden is different and requires unique solutions. Your drainage system components may include sinks, porous drain pipes, groundwater pumps and pits. If you have a sloping backyard, we can also re-level the land.

Our subsoil drainage specialists help homeowners across Castle Hill. As well as providing subsoil drainage solutions, we are also experienced with stormwater drainage. Our teams repair and install stormwater drainage systems to minimise the risk of flooding and expensive damage.

To find out more about how we can protect your garden and home from the risk of water damage, contact us today. We are committed to providing quality and affordable plumbing and will work with you to develop a subsoil drainage system tailored to your needs.

Greg Murray

Greg Murray

Greg Murray is the owner of GSM plumbing and has over 25 years' experience in plumbing and drainage. Whether you've got water leaks, blocked pipes, or need help constructing or maintaining a drainage system, Greg and his team are here to help. Find out more about GSM Plumbing.

About GSM Plumbing

Plumber Castle Hill

GSM Plumbing has been helping residents and businesses in Sydney keep their pipes flowing and drains clear for 25 years. If you've got a plumbing issue you're not sure about, give us a call on 02 9199 2560 and we can help.

Get a Quote Today

Latest Plumbing Articles