Top 10 Ways To Remove Standing Water From Your Yard

The ground in your yard never stays level, especially if you have kids that like to dig and bury things in your yard.

And especially if you have dogs that like to dig in your yard as well.

So, what do you do if you find certain areas in your yard that always seem to have standing water? Some of your options include re-grading your yard, aerating your lawn, extending your downspouts, installing a French drain, and raising the soil.

Read on to find out why these are good options for getting rid of standing water from your yard.

Why is there standing water in my yard

There could be many different reasons as to why you have standing water in your yard. These reasons include, but are not limited to:

Over watering

If your home is equipped with a sprinkler system or you are watering the lawn manually, and you are finding over watering spots, you may be watering your lawn for too long.

If this is the case for you, you simply need to water your lawn less often or for shorter periods of time.

Try different options until you find the right combination so the water no longer stands on the yard.

Improper grading

You lawn is probably going to have some kind of slope to it.

But hopefully the slope is consistent all throughout the yard.

If not, you are going to have something called improper grading.

This happens when a lawn has bumps and grooves all throughout.

And when it rains, the rain is going to find the lowest point that it can.

If you have bumps and grooves in your yard, then the water is going to find those areas and stay there.

Heavy rain

If some areas, you might have so much rain that you yard cannot soak it up fast enough.

The ground becomes saturated with the rain water and it can no longer take up any more.

Hard soil

Besides your grass, you need to consider the soil in your yard.

Some soils and clay will not soak up any rain water or will not let any rain water past the first layer.

This causes the water to stand in one area, since it cannot go into the ground.

10 ways to get rid of standing water

1. Aerate your lawn

Aerating your lawn gives the lawn more breathing room to work with.

And the more breathing room your lawn has, the more water it can soak up.

Aerating your lawn can be relatively easy for you, if you do not mind taking a few steps around your lawn.

You can buy some aerating shoes from Amazon here.

Purchase the aerating and then take a walk around your yard.

Your stride should be just wide enough for your yard.

2. Raise soil

As previously discussed, the standing water can be due to dips and grooves in the yard.

So the logical solution to that problem would be to raise the soil in the dip to match the higher areas in the yard.

Purchase a few bags of soil from your local hard ware store.

When you bring the soil back home, if the water is still standing in your yard, use the soil in those areas.

Fill in the areas until they are raised with the rest of the yard.

You might have to do this a few times over the next few weeks as more rain comes or sprinklers go off more times.

As the yard gets more rain, the soil will settle.

As it settles, fill in the areas with more until eventually everything has settled to the same height.

3. French drain

The idea behind the French drain is it takes the water away from your home or area in which you want to focus.

It is also pretty inexpensive too.

To install a French drain, dig a trench that has a slow grade away from your home towards a dry well or a storm drain.

Then put a perforated tube into the trench, cover the perforated tube with small rocks and then put soil on top of that.

The water will go through the soil and into the French drain.

The French drain will then take the water away from the soil and towards the dry well or storm drain.

4. Extend your downspouts

One possible reason for your standing water problem is the downspouts from your gutters is putting the water where it is not needed.

You can easily solve this problem by extending your downspouts and pointing them to an area that might need the water more or away from the yard.

You can purchase a downspout extender from your local hardware store or from Amazon here.

5. Boost your soil

It could also help your soil if you combine it with other items that can help soak up water as well.

This would include compost, mulch, or manure.

Clear any debris away from the standing water and lawn and then add your choice of soil booster.

6. Re-grade your lawn

The grade, or slope of your yard, has a lot to do with where the water goes when it rains.

This can be corrected by re-grading your lawn.

Re-grading your lawn can take a lot of time to do on your own and is outside the scope of this article.

If you are wanting to do this yourself, you can read an article here to give you step-by-step instructions.

For simplicity, call an expert to come to your house and talk you through the cost and what it would take to accomplish.

But in the end, this should help you avoid standing water in your yard.

7. De-thatch

Thatch is organic matter built up on your lawn around the base of grass plants.

This thatch can build up and keep the soil from soaking up the water the way the soil typically would.

You can use a lawn rake to remove the thatch from around the plants and then throw the thatch away.

You can combine removing the thatch with aerating the lawn to get an even better effect.

8. Dig

There is something a lawn experiences, which is called a hardpan.

Hardpan is a hard layer of soil a foot or two below the top of the yard.

According to the

Hardpan develops on homeowners property mostly due to improper watering as well as from compaction due to buildings and other structures. A lawn will have compacted soil due to the compaction done when the sod is first planted.

The issue of a hardpan can possibly be solved by your use of a shovel.

Wait until there has been a few days of no rain or watering of the lawn.

Then take your shovel into the part of the yard with the hardpan and start digging.

After a while, you should be able to break up the hardpan enough that the next time it rains, water should be through the layer and get to part of the soil it was not able to get to before.

If the hardpan is more than 2 feet deep, then you may need to call a professional to help you dig it out.

9. Dry creek

If you do not want to install a French drain, then another option is creating a dry creek.

A dry creek is a path of rocks or gravel that diverts the water away from your house.

And just like the French drain, you need to divert the water away to a dry well or storm drain.

Go to your local hard ware store and purchase a bag of rocks or gravel and then place them in your dry creek.

10. Replace the lawn

In none of the above work, you might have an extreme case of problems with the soil in your yard.

If that is the case, then you may need to take your lawn out and start all over.

This will include taking out the grass and the soil below.


Standing water may have a simple solution, including aerating your lawn, diverting the water away from your house, or leveling the yard by adding some soil.

It may not be so easy, where you might have to dig up the soil, break up the hardpan, or replace your lawn completely.

Bill Lantz

Bill Lantz is a database analyst by day and a weekend warrior by... weekend. He's currently building up his own miniature homestead in Central Utah with his wife and six kids. Some of his interests include knowing random trivia about films, reading history books, and playing video games with the boys.

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