Is your patio draining badly? Or are you laying a new drive?

The need for proper drainage for the garden landscape is a must, whether it's residential or commercial landscaping, if you are noticing drainage problems, don't put it off. Poor drainage can arise from several factors such as from a high-water table or where there is excess surface water (especially prevalent where there is clay soil). The UK has a growing problem with urban creep which occurs when historically permeable areas are redeveloped into driveways, car parks or any other types of impermeable area so in order to minimise the flooding incidence adequate drainage is essential. The decision to create a parking area on your properties can have environmental consequences; done incorrectly when it rains heavily or for a long period the drainage system can become overloaded and cause devastating flooding.

The use of SUDS (sustainable urban drainage systems) is on the increase and when installed correctly, a land drain, soakaway or French drain can effectively remove any standing water or water build-up and stop gardens & lawns from becoming waterlogged. Ensuring that water can drain away from a property correctly can also prevent damp issues in the home including damage to masonry and brickwork.

When considering installing drainage, you need to think about where you want the water to go. Ditches, streams or soakaways (deep holes filled with rubble that penetrate to porous rocks) are all suitable. Soakaways disperse rainwater from drainage pipes, channels and land drains but they mustn't be used for household drainage or sewage and should never flow into the sewerage system. Current legislation in England states that rainwater needs to be absorbed into the ground near to where it falls.

There are two ways of dealing with drainage:

•Incorporating a gentle gradient and channelling water into a purpose-built drainage channel.

• Using a permeable surface, such as gravel or specially engineered block paving materials.

  • Incorporating a gradient

The gradient must be very small, about 1:80 from front to back, enough for water to drain but not enough to allow pushchairs and bikes to run away from you. Even if there is a grassy area nearby to act as a rainwater collection point, the best way to deal with run off is with a drive drain such as those offered by ACO. These are specifically engineered to collect rainwater from domestic driveways and patios and channel it appropriately.

  • Using a permeable driveway surface

The simplest type of permeable surface is gravel which is naturally permeable. Today's technically advanced permeable paving means that you can still have a choice of colours and styles of paving. The issues surrounding non-permeable paving and the environmental hazards of excess water runoff are now more fully understood, ensuring that more and more driveway products are being engineered to be fully permeable. A permeable driveway system such as Marshalls patented Permeable block paving has all the benefits of an efficient drainage system that returns rainfall to the water table, without the need for membranes, tanks or soakaways, and therefore no planning permission is necessary prior to laying.

Whichever way you go about your drainage we can help. Call into to Chandlers and we will be happy to advise you.

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