Rain rain go away, come again another day!

Spring is fully upon us here in Kansas City, with summer not far away. However, we are in the midst of a serious rainy season here in the Kansas City area. While we sing the old nursery rhyme of “Rain, rain go away,” more often than not, here in Kansas City, that rain has returned the next day. So far in April and May, it has proven to be easier to count the days it hasn’t rained rather than the ones it has. The Kansas City metropolitan area has experienced above-average rainfall in April 2016, with May not far behind a record setting pace. For those on the Kansas side, Kansas has experienced “much above-average” rainfall in April, and while Missouri was average overall as a state, the Northwest part of the state (including the KCMO metropolitan area) experienced above-average rainfall in April 2016, with no sign of it letting up in May.

us map of rainfall 2016

As a homeowner there are several key components to your plumbing/drainage system to combat excess water in your home. In many homes the most likely spot for excess water is in the basement. However, there is an old saying about basements: "There are those that are wet, and those that are going to be wet." More likely than not at some point your basement will get wet. However, you have control over how wet it gets, and where all of the water goes that your basement traps. One of the most essential elements to having a water free basement is your sump pump, and the corresponding sump pump pit. A sump pump is a pump used to remove water that has accumulated in a water collecting sump pit. The sump pump is commonly located in the basement of homes, while the dry well is commonly located in a flat surface outside the home. If the sump pump is working properly, it will collect all of the excess water surrounding your house. Some water will always sit in the sump pit, but when that water reaches a certain level, the sump pump then pumps the water out and away from your house into the controlled dry well, leaving your basement dry.

Though we recently wrote about sump pumps in a blog post, the excess of rain has made this information even more important. We recently had a job where one of our technicians had to dig a new sump pump pit for a home. He took step-by-step pictures throughout the whole process, and we feel as if this is extremely informational for the homeowner, as you can see the logistics behind the water leaving your house, as well as the process towards building the system that keeps your home (and basement) water free.


sump pump installation

Our assignment was to build a 4x4 dry well gravel pit. This pit should be on a level surface in a central location in the back/side yard of the house. We started by digging the parameters of the pit.

sump pump installation

After we dug the pit to our specifications we started filling it in with gravel. Notice the trench leading from the pit to the house. That’s the sump pump drain, and it will carry the water from the sump pump in the basement of the house into the dry well.

sump pump installation

Next we ran the sump pump drain into the dry well. It’s important to get the water out from the basement, as getting water out from the basement relieves pressure on the basement walls.

sump pump installation

After the drain is put into place we then start the process of filling the dry well with the drain line in. After it’s filled with gravel we then cover the gravel with about four inches of dirt. This, in combination with the gravel, helps hold the water in the sump pit, where it then dissolves into the ground.

sump pump installation

And finally, eight hours after we started, the finished product! We want to make the dry well look as inconspicuous as possible, and ensure that our techs will take whatever measures necessary to make your yard look as natural as possible. Over time the grass will grow and you won’t be able to see any difference in your yard at all.