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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    36

    Default Driveway drainage problem

    Hello Everyone!

    The area at the end of my 20x10 foot asphalt driveway has always ended up with pooled water after a storm, which becomes dangerous in the winter time. I can't even get the mail, since the pooled water freezes and resembles a small skating rink at the end of my driveway.

    I just had my asphalt driveway repaired and sealed, and the culverts on eitherside of the driveway dug out to allow for more water run-off. Everything looks fine, but during a recent downpour, I could see that the rainwater was still pooling at the end of the driveway, although not as bad.

    I assume that the patches of grass that separates the opening of the culvert and the edge of the driveway are the problem. (The asphalt guys dug out as much as they could, but felt that the problem should be resolved by the township/county since the problem area was part of the easement. Another asphalt guy that I got an asphalt/sealant estimate from wouldn't even dare dig out that area that the others did because he didn't do landscaping.)

    There doesn't appear to be much driveway drainage problem on the side with a narrow strip of grass -- but the side with a 2-3 foot patch of grass has a lot of water pooling.

    My question is: Once I figure out who has the resposibility -- and permission to attack the drainage problem -- the township or me -- would the drainage problem be helped by digging out the grass between the driveway and culverts -- and adding gravel (without blocking the culverts) where the old grass was?

    I'd appreciate any help you can give me.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,480

    Default Re: Driveway drainage problem

    If the grass is indeed holding the water on the driveway, then yes, lowering the grass area (and replanting or sodding ) should promote better drainage. Before doing anything, I'd be inclined to take a straight piece of lumber down there with a level and do some measuring to see if the driveway needs more crown (higher in the center ) or if the grass is truly the problem.

    If you have sidewalks, the city is responsible for the sidewalk, you are responsible for everything up to the sidewalk. If you do not have sidewalks, then the easement is measured from the center of the street and will vary from city to city and development to development. Your city planning office should be able to tell you what the easements are for your area. If the culvert is right at the edge of the roadway, then it would be safe to say that the city would be responsible for the culvert and ditches, which may include the grass areas on either side of your driveway, however IMHO, it will be far faster and easier to go out there with a shovel and regrade the grass than hassle with the city, trying to get them to do it. They certainly aren't going to complain if they don't have to be bothered with it. What they WOULD complain about is if you tossed the grass and dirt you excavate into the ditch. As tempting as it might be to do that, resist the urge and dispose of the dirt somewhere else.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    36

    Default Re: Driveway drainage problem

    Thanks for the suggestions, Spruce!

    I really didn't want to involve the city in this -- I'd probably have grass up to my ears -- or an ice skating rink up the entire driveway -- before they'd come to my aid.

    Don't worry, as a part of my garbage service/fees I'm provided with a yard waste bin, as well as a garbage one, so I won't dump the dirt/grass in the ditch -- although I may be tempted to throw it out on the street since there is a strip of asphalt that slopes at the end of my driveway laid by the city because they decided to do an overlay instead of removing the old asphalt when they redid the street. This caused the street to be a bit higher than the driveways on our street.

    By the way, do you have any suggestions as to the type of gravel/stones that I should use? I live in Michigan where the summers can be hot and rainy -- and the winters a bit icy and cold.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,480

    Default Re: Driveway drainage problem

    Gravel and stone to use for what? If you want to replace the grass with gravel, then just about any road bed type aggregate will suffice. It kind of depends on your area what that rock will be called. I know it as "3/4 minus" which is a screened material that is 3/4" or less. I have a friend in Georgia that get's what's called "crush and run" which is essentially the same thing. Gravel will require far less maintenance than grass, which is probably preferred. Whatever you use, it's important that the rock compacts and locks together because when you drive or walk on it you don't want it moving around. That means it needs to be a jagged "crushed" type rock, not a round "river" type rock.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    36

    Default Re: Driveway drainage problem

    Thanks again for the suggestions. Yes, the stones/gravel will be used to replace the grass in that area. I'm afraid that if I dig up that area of grass and left only dirt -- then that would become muddy and messy when it rained. At least the gravel would look better than dirt, without blocking the water in the driveway like the grass does.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,480

    Default Re: Driveway drainage problem

    Good luck with your project. Please report back with your results.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

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