7 Causes of Water Intrusion During Heavy Rainfall

During heavy rainfall, homes are more at risk of experiencing damage from water intrusion. Water damage can become a major problem for homeowners due to how expensive repairs can be. More importantly, lives can be put in danger during significant water intrusion, such as flooding. It’s important to stay on top of potential water intrusion issues to avoid water damage issues during heavy rainfall. In this blog, we will explore common grading & drainage issues that may lead to water intrusion during heavy rainfall and the solutions to avoiding them.

Grading & Drainage Issues

Improper grading is one of the main causes of water intrusion from the exterior of a home during heavy rainfall. In some cases, this issue may be present for an extended period of time but may not present itself until rainfall reaches a significant level. Grading refers to the slope or angle of the land around the home. Ideally, the ground should slope away from the foundation of the house, directing water away from the building. Proper grading should be planned and accounted for during the home construction process. Although, there are situations where grading is done properly and just simply needs to be readdressed once certain conditions have taken place. 

Drainage issues are another problem that causes major issues with water for homeowners. Without proper drainage around the foundation of the home, water will begin to pool and can potentially leak into the foundation. Drainage is also typically accounted for during the construction process. Although, it should also be carefully planned for when making changes to the landscaping around the property. 

7 Common Grading & Drainage Issues Which Cause Water Intrusion During Heavy Rainfall:

Inadequate Planning

During new construction, the land is typically graded to provide a flat surface for building. However, when the grading is done incorrectly, water has the potential to pool around the foundation of the home. Often, this is the result of inadequate planning and poor execution of the grading process. If you have water entering the foundation of your home, you should consult with an expert to provide the best solution and prevent any further damage to the foundation of your home.

Land grading for proper drainage
Land Grading

Poor Soil Quality

The type of soil around a home can also have an effect on the grading around a home. For example, clay soil has a tendency to shrink and expand over time, which will lead to uneven grading. If you suspect this problem at your home, you should have an expert perform an assessment and provide the necessary solutions to address the problem.

The effect of poor soil quality on grading.
Soil testing for construction

Settling of The Foundation

Over time, the foundation of a home can settle or shift, causing the grading around the home to become uneven. With a significant shift in the grading, water can pool around the foundation during a heavy rainfall. Pooling water around the foundation always poses a risk for water intrusion. This is a problem that should be handled by an expert to resolve this issue and prevent heavy rainfalls from causing water intrusion into your home.

Lack of maintenance

Even when the grading is performed properly at the time of construction, a lack of maintenance can lead to grading issues over time. For example, erosion of the ground around the home by the effects of wind, water, and other natural phenomena can contribute to changes in the grading around the home. In most cases, these problems can be resolved by performing some minor maintenance around the foundation of the home to prevent further erosion and risk of water intrusion. Although, there are more severe cases that require professional experience and the right equipment.

Clogged gutters

Gutters are designed to collect water from the roof and direct it away from the home. However, gutters can become clogged with leaves, twigs, or other debris to the point of overflow. Water overflowing from a gutter can pool up near the foundation of the home and create a risk for water intrusion at the foundation. This problem can be easily resolved by performing an annual cleaning maintenance of the gutter system.

Clogged gutters cause water leaking and pooling around foundation
Clogged Gutters Causing Overflow

Poorly designed landscaping

If landscaping is not designed properly, it can contribute to problems with water intrusion at the foundation. For example, a bad landscape design can potentially formulate water accumulation and restrict proper drainage, leading to excess moisture around the foundation of the home. The materials used, their placement, and their effectiveness over time will all have an impact on how successful water is directed away from the foundation of the home. In most cases, landscaping issues can be resolved fairly easily without any special machinery or equipment. If you need additional help, a landscaping company that has experience in working with drainage issues should be contacted.

Insufficient or Lack of drainage

If the land around the home does not have adequate drainage, water will accumulate around the foundation. This can be caused by a variety of factors, including the natural slope of the land and the presence of impervious surfaces such as concrete or asphalt. In the right conditions of a heavy rainfall, water may not have a place to go at a fast enough rate and therefore may leak into the foundation. In cases like these, it may be best to consult with an experienced contractor to provide the best solution to this type of issue.

Lawn drainage system to direct water away from the home foundation and prevent water intrusion
Lawn Drainage System


In conclusion, water intrusion during rainfall due to improper grading and drainage issues around the foundation of a home can lead to serious problems for homeowners. It is important to address these issues as soon as possible to prevent water damage to any part of the property and ensure the safety of occupants. If you suspect your home is at risk of water intrusion or flooding, it is recommended to consult with a professional to assess the situation and recommend appropriate solutions.

Suggested Top Rated Products
No items found.
Read More
Call Us

Call to Schedule an assessment with one of our certified experts.


- Or -
Leave A Note

Fill out our contact form and we will reply back within 24 hours.

Leave a detailed message on our contact form.