How I Tricked When My Neighbors Downspout Drains Into My Yard?

by Shelley Ryffe
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When neighbors downspout drains into my yard, it really becomes a hazardous situation. Downspout water damages your property and creates mud, dirt, and a slippery yard. The situation even worsens when it enters your basement. So, you have to drive the water stream away to save your land.

But how would you stop water draining from your neighbor’s yard? Here we will discuss some effective ideas to help you manage downspout water. Besides that, there are downspout laws that are effective in certain conditions, and you can take the necessary steps as we took.

What To Do If Neighbors Downspout Drains Into My Yard?

Does your property get damaged from the water drainage of your neighbor? This can lead to a dispute causing unnecessary tension between two parties. The chance of damage gets even bigger if your property/yard is near to your neighbor’s.

You can inform your neighbor and ask for a solution. If you have a negotiating neighbor, you can ask them to solve this problem.

But things may not always go the way we want. A non-negotiating neighbor is hard to convince. And it is hard to talk without leading to a dispute.

If your neighbor is non-negotiating, you can call the Public Service Department and complain about the downspout violation.

You can also stop downspout water from entering your property by taking some measures. And there are effective downspout laws applicable for such situations.

How To Stop Water Drainage From Neighbors Yard?

How To Stop Water Drainage From Neighbors Yard

Neighbors downspout flooding my basement” is a common complaint we see when you have an adjacent property with your neighbor. If your neighbor’s downspout floods away from your basement and you want to prevent the water damage, then you should promptly take some steps.

Some preventive measures can reduce your property damage.

To prevent water drainage from entering your yard from your neighbors, follow the given steps below-

Blocking The Waterway

If you have an irritating neighbor and do not want to bother disturbing him, and want to solve this problem on your own, blocking the water passage is the most convenient way.

Shovel up the soil and build a berm. Berms are raised lands generally found beside the river banks or canals to prevent tidal surges.

Here, in this case, block the waterway that gets into your yard by piling up the soil. It will stop water runoff from the neighbor’s yard into yours.

However, this may not seem a pleasant scenario to look at. So, you can plant some flowers in the soil pile to make it look charming.

First, think of a possible road map for the berm. A round or C-shaped berm fits best on most landscapes.

However, you can make any shape or form that works best for saving a certain part of your property. Then create only a little height with the soil. And you can add more soil as necessary.

Make a firm base layer and then add more soil on and make it compact. This way, your home will be protected from sudden flood splashes as well.

Create A French Catch Basin

A French drain or catch basin is made from gravel and pipeline, drains out groundwater from around the properties. It is useful in soil types that soak up a lot of water. It is a convenient way to drain out both running and trapped water.

The catch basin catches all the water from your neighbor’s downspout and takes it away from your property.

To make a French drain, follow a few steps-

  • Make a plan/design for the installation of your French drain. Mark the outline before digging in.
  • Before installing the French catch basin, you have to be sure that there is no community pipeline under your property or specifically in the marked area. Contact the utility provider to ensure this matter. Otherwise, you may have to handle more water from underground pipes than just your neighbor’s.
  • Shovel out the soil. Put in some of the gravel. Then place the pipe inside. Lastly, put some more gravel on top of the pipeline to cover it.
  • Place the catch basin at a place that is on the low ground where the water gathers. Thus you can drive away from the water by downward sloping.

This technique is also useful in a flooding situation. To save your property from excess rainwater, you can install French drains around your home.

Make A Dry Well

To prevent downspout from entering your property from your neighbor’s, create a route for the water into a dry well. A dry well is an exceptional way to hold excess surface water. It is also suitable for stormwater management.

A Dry Well is mainly a deep hole in the underground that looks and works like a well. The dry well is a deep hole in the ground, normally 30 to 70 feet long and 3 feet wide.

First, plan out the passage through which the draining water will runoff. Then dig a hole big enough to hold the drain water.

Now use a perforated casing. The perforated casing will collect water from the surface soil and will be gathered into an underground tank.

However, dry wells are easily available in home depot or most home stores. It is important to check the pipelines occasionally to prevent any clogs in the line. Otherwise, you may have to replace it altogether, which will cost you a lot of money.

Downspout Laws

The Downspout law states that no water system, whether it is a downspout, sump pump, catch basin, swimming pool, drain tile, or spa drain outfall, can water within the ten feet of any adjacent property. And to that, any temporary extension is included.

The law also states it may not damage the drainage system of the adjacent property, including any of the village, county, federal, or state-owned properties, rights-of-ways, and passages. Any breach of this law gives you the right to request a property maintenance inspection from the authority.

The Engineering Standards Ordinance says that homeowners should keep the downspouts at least 5 feet away from the surrounding buildings. In cases where the downspout is on the driveway, the code recommends diverting the stream away through a system.

So, one can use a 45° or 90° extension pipe from a hardware store. It is better to lead the downpour to the backyard or front yard into the garden.

However, the Civil Law clearly states that for any water that drains into your property, it is your responsibility to handle it despite where it comes from.

This Video Will Help You Too!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How To Bury Downspout Drainage?

To bury the downspout drainage, consider a few things. Make a map of where you want to take your downspout drain. Before digging into the ground, make sure there is no community service line underground. If the downspout drain is in an inconvenient place, take it into the yard with the help of an extended pipe. Place the pipe a few centimeters under the ground by digging up a small trench and filling it up with soil.

How Far Should Downspouts Drain From The House?

Any downspout exit should be at least four feet away from the building’s foundation if the house is on a slope. But for a flat land household, the downspout extension must be at least ten feet away. Soil type is another big factor here. On sandy soil, the distance should be greater than ten feet. But in clay-type soil, ten feet is okay.

Can Your Neighbor Drain Water Into My Yard?

In most cases, you can complain against an annoying neighbor who carelessly damages your property with bad water management. However, according to Civil Law, it is up to you to manage the water that is already on your property.


If my neighbors downspout drains into my yard, I would have requested them to drive the stream another way.

My neighbors are well enough to put things in order for others. But if you are in a situation where your neighbors are damaging your property and are not considering making things better, you can always take the help of the constitution.

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