3 Ways To Reduce Stormwater Runoff At Home

During the rainy season, every home experiences stormwater runoff in one way or another. This is the water that washes over your driveway and the streets and runs through your gutters. Eventually, it ends up in the drainage of your home.

Reduce Stormwater Runoff

However, before it does, it potentially picks up pollutants as the water passes your garden that uses up fertilizers or passes by the driveway that may have car oil and grease on the surface. For such hazardous reasons, it’s essential to reduce stormwater runoff on your property.

While some localities administer ordinances for residents to manage stormwater runoff, you can take the initiative to mitigate this issue by yourself even if your local neighborhood doesn’t comply with such rules. Most especially if you’re living on urban grounds, you’ll find less vegetation, which means the water won’t readily seep into the ground.

Fortunately, there are many ways to minimize stormwater runoff in your home. Keep reading to discover three methods you can apply with ease.

  1. Eliminate Impervious Surfaces On The Ground

Rain in nature soaks into the soil or ground where it falls. Most of this is absorbed by plants through their roots, and some are filtered as it percolates down into the ground and go through the water cycle. However, that’s not the case with impervious surfaces. To reduce stormwater runoff, it’s best to eliminate those areas.

Concrete and asphalt don’t usually provide stormwater relief. The good news is that you can get rid of water runoff and maintain your hardscape at the same time. For instance, you can incorporate porous materials like gravel, stones, and bricks into your driveway. You may use geotextiles on concrete pavements, too.

However, if you experience constant rain in your geographic area, it’s best to invest in porous hardscapes. They might cost more, but they last longer and have many benefits.

For one, they can increase your real estate value. Homeowners prefer having grounds that melt ice or snow faster and allow them to replace pavers easily as well. Pavers can be used to replace concrete or asphalt slabs. Patios, walkways, and driveways can be constructed using paving stones and bricks. Water can seep through the gaps between the pavers.

Another suggestion is to create only two strips of concrete pavement into the driveway. The rest of the other spaces can have grass, soil, or other permeable surfaces. This can be an excellent compromise for convenient parking but at the same time keep stormwater runoff in check.

  1. Plant A Rain Garden

Eliminate Impervious Surfaces On The Ground

One of the most effective ways to slow down the runoff from stormwater is by planting a rain garden. Low areas, slopes, and downspout outlets are common locations for this type of garden. As rainwater seeps into the area, it’s trapped by layers of soil, mulch, and plants.

Planting your own rain garden requires know-how, but it’s not complex to do as long as you’re familiar with basic gardening. For starters, look into some excellent ground cover plants. Usually, rain gardens contain flowering plants and grasses that can survive in soil soaked with rainwater.

Stormwater runoff is slowed down and infiltrated into the ground by rain gardens. Gardens like these reduce the amount of stormwater washed from roofs and paved areas and therefore protect streams and lakes from pollutants.

  1. Catch And Store Stormwater

Stormwater drains typically collect rainwater that falls on the ground or driveways. One of the best solutions to reduce runoff is to catch and store the water instead. You can use it to water your garden and plants as well as wash your driveway and car. Consider the following tips to store stormwater:

  • To collect stormwater runoff from roofs, install a rain barrel or cistern. You can create an irrigation system with this barrel by connecting it to your garden beds.
  • To prevent water from running off the site, landscaping can direct water to areas that can penetrate the soil. Installing a swale is a way to landscape your garden so it can catch as much rain as possible. There are swales on a slope, hollows, or ridges designed to hold water as it cascades downhill. Afterward, the water soaks into the ground and feeds your thirsty plants.
  • Finally, if you have more budget to spare, why don’t you invest in underground stormwater tanks? On-site tanks can be built to accept and infiltrate stormwater. Additionally, stormwater can be directed into the tank through surface drains and stormwater pipes. You can harvest rainwater with a DIY purifier, allowing the water to be used for many household chores and purposes. Not only will you be saving the environment from pollutants, but you can also save on water utility costs.
  1. Plant Trees

A tree’s beauty and the many other benefits it provides make it an important part of residential landscapes. Trees are known to elevate the appearance of entire neighborhoods as well.

Their capacity to help manage runoff is increasingly being recognized. Rainfall-induced erosion can be reduced by the ability of a tree’s leaf canopy to absorb water. Its roots and other parts can absorb stormwater runoff, too. The roots create conditions that help the soil take in the water.

Another way that having trees in your home would help reduce stormwater runoff is that they can create pathways for rainfall. Rainwater that fails to go through the nearby waterways can seep through the soil and allow the groundwater to recharge. Either by evaporating from the soil or by being taken up and released when plants transpire, water is removed from the environment through evapotranspiration and transpiration.

Trees on residential properties can play a significant role in stormwater management by promoting water infiltration. Regardless of whether the area is urban or rural, the more trees there is the less runoff that can transport pollutants will be generated. In urban areas, trees are especially important since there are more sources of pollution in such locations. Pollutants in both water and in the air can be filtered by trees, so aside from having to deal with less runoff water, you can benefit from better air quality, too.


Whichever method you choose, see to it that runoff is directed away from your home’s foundation. Stormwater can pose a danger and threat not only to your property but to your family’s health as well when the water becomes stagnant. That’s why it’s a must to apply the tips mentioned in this article in order to manage stormwater runoff well once the rainy season starts.

Thank you for reading!

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