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Dartgod
03-24-2009, 03:36 PM
I don't know if there are any landscapers that may know the answer to this, or maybe I need to consult with someone else (but who?).

Here is my problem.

We have a natural spring under our back yard, or so my wife tells me. She had this house about ten years before we met and got married. There is an old well that is covered by a water meter lid.

Over the last few years it seems like the middle of the yard has settled somewhat and now we have a constant wet area there. After a heavy rain, it can be weeks before there is no longer standing water. It get so bad in the spring that I often cannot mow that area because there is constantly standing water. I have opened the well and there is water clear to the top and it is several inches above the lowest part of our yard.

I don't think this is a drainage issue. I think the yard has settled because of the spring and now the water table is at or near the surface.

Does anyone here have an idea of what I can do about this, or perhaps know who I can contact for advice? A landscaper will advise to install an underground drainage system (french drain?), but I'm not so sure that is the proper solution. Maybe I need to bring in some fill dirt to raise the level of that area of the yard?

BTW, this does not cause any water in our basement since where the house sites is several feet above and about 50 yards away from the problem area in our yard, although we do have some settling issues with our foundation and driveway.

KC Dan
03-24-2009, 03:42 PM
I don't know if there are any landscapers that may know the answer to this, or maybe I need to consult with someone else (but who?).
Natural Swimming Pool - Sweet! No help, I know but the thought is there...

Brock
03-24-2009, 03:52 PM
Sounds to me like it doesn't matter how much dirt you pile on top of it. Maybe put a sump down in that well?

Lumpy
03-24-2009, 03:54 PM
Most landscapers deal w/ the cosmetic aspects of yards and will only be able to resolve situations like urs w/ quick fixes. A french drain will only help by redirecting the pool of water to another location but that won't fix the erosion problem. Try looking for a landscape company that specializes in regrading.

DeezNutz
03-24-2009, 03:55 PM
You're going to need to divert that water, and this has to be the first step. Everything else is going to be pissing into the wind in the long-term, so there's no real reason to waste the money.

Dartgod
03-24-2009, 03:55 PM
Sounds to me like it doesn't matter how much dirt you pile on top of it. Maybe put a sump down in that well?
And pump the water to where? My neighbor's yard? :D

Brock
03-24-2009, 03:57 PM
And pump the water to where? My neighbor's yard? :D

The street? (might not be legal, but a lot of people do it)

Radar Chief
03-24-2009, 03:58 PM
Are you sure it is truly spring fed and not just an old water well?
If it is a water well you could have it filled.

Dartgod
03-24-2009, 03:59 PM
Are you sure it is truly spring fed and not just an old water well?
If it is a water well you could have it filled.
I'm not sure about this. Only what my wife has told me.

RJ
03-24-2009, 03:59 PM
And pump the water to where? My neighbor's yard? :D


You could pump it to New Mexico. We can always use more water.

Dartgod
03-24-2009, 04:03 PM
The street? (might not be legal, but a lot of people do it)
Not possible. Everything slopes from the street down into my back yard and I have a 330' deep lot so the distance is considerable. Also, we don't have storm sewers, just drainage ditches on both sides of the road.

DJ's left nut
03-24-2009, 04:03 PM
I'm not sure about this. Only what my wife has told me.

Oh.

Well in that case you should probably just get the well filled...

Dartgod
03-24-2009, 04:04 PM
Oh.

Well in that case you should probably just get the well filled...
It's already full....of water.

Radar Chief
03-24-2009, 04:04 PM
I'm not sure about this. Only what my wife has told me.

Id try to identify what it actually is first.
Trying to pump dry a natural spring is going to prove futile and you never know, you may actually have a leaking water main under your yard.

RJ
03-24-2009, 04:06 PM
Id try to identify what it actually is first.
Trying to pump dry a natural spring is going to prove futile and you never know, you may actually have a leaking water main under your yard.


That is an excellent point, happened to me in a house I rented years ago.

Dartgod
03-24-2009, 04:10 PM
Id try to identify what it actually is first.
Trying to pump dry a natural spring is going to prove futile and you never know, you may actually have a leaking water main under your yard.
It's possible, but doubtful. The water main is a good 50 yards or so from the trouble area. Plus the house sits in between the two.

We haven't noticed higher than normal water bills either.

Dartgod
03-24-2009, 04:13 PM
Since my entire lot slopes downhill from the street, I may look into installing a drainage system on both sides of the yard to divert runoff from that area. That way I don't have to dig in the trouble area. There is a lot of yard beyond this area that I can divert to.

Here's a crude drawing of my yard and the problem area.

Radar Chief
03-24-2009, 04:20 PM
It's possible, but doubtful. The water main is a good 50 yards or so from the trouble area. Plus the house sits in between the two.

We haven't noticed higher than normal water bills either.

If it's leaking on the city side of your meter you wouldnt notice higher water bills.
Sounds like you know where the water lines are though.

morphius
03-24-2009, 04:20 PM
Natural Swimming Pool - Sweet! No help, I know but the thought is there...
I was thinking koi pond, but I was obviously thinking too small.

Good luck Dart, wish I had something useful to tell you.

nstygma
03-24-2009, 04:22 PM
here's your answer:
86430

Delano
03-24-2009, 04:26 PM
Put in a rain garden.

Dartgod
03-24-2009, 04:28 PM
here's your answer:
86430
Excellent answer!

rep...

MOhillbilly
03-24-2009, 04:48 PM
river clay, gravel, top soil after it sits a season.

Hog Farmer
03-24-2009, 05:02 PM
If there is truly a natural spring there , I don't think there is much you can do except live with it. Maybe dig it out and make a pond ????

King_Chief_Fan
03-24-2009, 05:13 PM
If there is truly a natural spring there , I don't think there is much you can do except live with it. Maybe dig it out and make a pond ????

you need to find the source upstream and possbily divert it

PastorMikH
03-24-2009, 05:29 PM
Have you thought about a sprinkler system? Use the well as your water source. Pumping the well water will save you on water costs and will help lower the water table. The water table lowers, your yard should dry up.

Moving in some dirt will help, and is probably needed if there is much of a depression. But, if the water table rises much more, it will be wet again.

Is there someplace the water can be drained to, or are you surrounded by other houses? If there is someplace you can drain it to, a creek behind your house, ditch, whatever that won't do harm to a neighbor's yard, a drainage system would also work.




Say, wait, this isn't by chance your septic tank is it??????

PastorMikH
03-24-2009, 05:30 PM
you need to find the source upstream and possbily divert it



How do you divert an underground stream?

allen_kcCard
03-24-2009, 05:36 PM
Put in a pump on a switch and use it to water the grass.

Valiant
03-24-2009, 05:38 PM
How do you divert an underground stream?

underground ditch..

cdcox
03-24-2009, 05:48 PM
You need a hydrologist. They are expensive. I am not a hydrologist, but I know several and through the years I've learned everything they know:

1) Water flows down hill
2) Payday is on Friday

Using the knowledge from 1) you need to make a down hill path from your well (and the wet area) to the drainage ditch that you mention that is all down hill. A French drain would work as long as it diverts the water down hill to the drainage ditch.

cdcox
03-24-2009, 05:52 PM
Okay, I just realized the drainage ditch is up by the road and it is up hill to there. Where does water drain to from the back of your property? Are there any swales, ditches, streams, etc? If your yard is a local low point, you are pretty much screwed.

Skip Towne
03-24-2009, 06:37 PM
Move?

keg in kc
03-24-2009, 06:42 PM
Antifreeze.

Dartgod
03-24-2009, 06:49 PM
Have you thought about a sprinkler system? Use the well as your water source. Pumping the well water will save you on water costs and will help lower the water table. The water table lowers, your yard should dry up.

Moving in some dirt will help, and is probably needed if there is much of a depression. But, if the water table rises much more, it will be wet again.

Is there someplace the water can be drained to, or are you surrounded by other houses? If there is someplace you can drain it to, a creek behind your house, ditch, whatever that won't do harm to a neighbor's yard, a drainage system would also work.




Say, wait, this isn't by chance your septic tank is it??????
I don't have a septic tank. A sprinkler system is not a bad idea.

I think I know what might be causing it now. First, the drainage ditch in front of my house needs to be dug deeper. On one end, away from my driveway, it is pretty much flat...no ditch at all. When it rains hard, I literally have a river down my side yard into the back. Also, if you look at the pic I posted earlier, we added an extension to the end of the drive we park our camper and my truck. It starts sloping at the top of the pad and I think it's funneling additional runoff that used to just soak into the ground.

I'm going to see if I can get the city to dig out the drainage ditch, or if I can do it myself. Then I'll put in some drainage lines at the end of the driveway around and past the trouble area, like in the attached picture.

I'll bet that fixes my problem.

Dartgod
03-24-2009, 06:50 PM
Move?
That's in our future as soon as my job becomes more secure.

Bwana
03-24-2009, 07:20 PM
If there is truly a natural spring there , I don't think there is much you can do except live with it. Maybe dig it out and make a pond ????

Damn right and stock it with bass!

PastorMikH
03-24-2009, 07:47 PM
I noticed in the pic that the "river" runs past your house - how close does it get to the house? That water could pose potential problems to the house, not just the yard, if it's too close.

If you can get the city to re-route I'd see about building up a burm or levee so the river drains to the street, then down the city's re-routing if possible. I'd at least want to make sure that water wasn't close to my foundation/basement.

Over-Head
03-24-2009, 07:50 PM
Dig down below the frost line, let er' fill up again, add a few lake trout.
By mid summer, drop the line, and presto Lunch! :thumb:
In the winter you can go ice fishing.:D

JOhn
03-24-2009, 08:03 PM
underground ditch..

ROFL

Skip Towne
03-24-2009, 08:09 PM
That's in our future as soon as my job becomes more secure.

It's a good time to buy a house.

RJ
03-24-2009, 08:29 PM
My best advice about your yard is:

Don't bury the bodies there. That's the easiest way to get caught. Also, with your drainage problem, they'll likely float to the surface.

Is there a neighbor you dislike? Bury the bodies in his yard.

That's about all the advice I have on yards.

PastorMikH
03-24-2009, 08:32 PM
ROFL



It's a JOhn sighting!

You ever catch that ghost?

JOhn
03-24-2009, 08:34 PM
It's a JOhn sighting!

You ever catch that ghost?

Naw, but don't worry about him now. No more overnights for me, got my promotion.

Though I have been telling a lot of the cute new hires about him. ROFL

Dartgod
03-24-2009, 08:44 PM
I noticed in the pic that the "river" runs past your house - how close does it get to the house? That water could pose potential problems to the house, not just the yard, if it's too close.

If you can get the city to re-route I'd see about building up a burm or levee so the river drains to the street, then down the city's re-routing if possible. I'd at least want to make sure that water wasn't close to my foundation/basement.
It doesn't run next to the foundation. Digging the ditch deeper next to the road will keep it from running into my yard.

Iowanian
03-24-2009, 10:47 PM
Do you use the well?


Its possible that filling the well would prevent as much water from raising in the water table. Bentonite and sand....

PastorMikH
03-24-2009, 11:07 PM
Do you use the well?


Its possible that filling the well would prevent as much water from raising in the water table. Bentonite and sand....



Actually, whether the well is open or filled in, the water table would remain the same. To lower the water table, wait for the water table to lower on its own or move the water out. The good ol' farmers in western KS managed to lower the water table out there by 400' or more in places thanks to the irrigation.

Iowanian
03-24-2009, 11:10 PM
If the well is spring fed, and over-filling...it sure could affect a localized "water table".

If there were a sand pocket to that area etc.

I'm not suggesting it WILL fix the problem, but it could. I've helped fill quite a few wells over the years.

cdcox
03-25-2009, 12:56 AM
Actually, whether the well is open or filled in, the water table would remain the same. To lower the water table, wait for the water table to lower on its own or move the water out. The good ol' farmers in western KS managed to lower the water table out there by 400' or more in places thanks to the irrigation.

Dart is gonna become a corn farmer?

Miles
03-25-2009, 01:31 AM
Buy a goat or two. It can drink the water, keep your lawn trimmed and generate "fill" for the sunken area.

Comanche
03-25-2009, 06:13 AM
You are assuming a cause/effect relationship that may not be applicable. The "settling" in your back yard may be the cause of the standing water (the low area may be holding the water). The standing water problem may not be caused by the spring. It is likely the spring has existed for many years and has created its own drainage outlet underground. I recommend you take a "natural" approach and try not to fight the spring (it will eventually win). I would recommend you build up the "settled" area in the back yard. Start the build up with a porous material such as gravel and possibly create a level of sandy dirt. Then top this off with black dirt (no clay). If you can borrow a survey level from someone it would be good to ensure that the problem area is still not low enough to draw drainage from other areas.

I don't know if there are any landscapers that may know the answer to this, or maybe I need to consult with someone else (but who?).

Here is my problem.

We have a natural spring under our back yard, or so my wife tells me. She had this house about ten years before we met and got married. There is an old well that is covered by a water meter lid.

Over the last few years it seems like the middle of the yard has settled somewhat and now we have a constant wet area there. After a heavy rain, it can be weeks before there is no longer standing water. It get so bad in the spring that I often cannot mow that area because there is constantly standing water. I have opened the well and there is water clear to the top and it is several inches above the lowest part of our yard.

I don't think this is a drainage issue. I think the yard has settled because of the spring and now the water table is at or near the surface.

Does anyone here have an idea of what I can do about this, or perhaps know who I can contact for advice? A landscaper will advise to install an underground drainage system (french drain?), but I'm not so sure that is the proper solution. Maybe I need to bring in some fill dirt to raise the level of that area of the yard?

BTW, this does not cause any water in our basement since where the house sites is several feet above and about 50 yards away from the problem area in our yard, although we do have some settling issues with our foundation and driveway.

King_Chief_Fan
03-25-2009, 08:07 AM
How do you divert an underground stream?

that's for the engineers to figure out:D

King_Chief_Fan
03-25-2009, 08:19 AM
Look out for those underground streams