written by NDS, Inc.

Poorly drained runoff from roofs can enter your basement, or flow inside homes through foundational cracks or leaks, where it can warp floorboards and turn finished rooms into disastrous, mildewy messes. Inadequate or non-existent drainage from gutter downspouts can also create standing water that can harbor breeding spots for mosquitoes that carry Zika Virus.

Many people may think solving their drainage problems will be difficult and costly, or that they’ll end up with an ugly drainage ditch on their property. But, it is possible to eliminate standing water cost-effectively and attractively. The fall months are the best time to get a drainage system into the ground to remove any water that is sitting next to the home. The winter freeze/thaw cycle of water sitting in the soil or cracks in a home’s foundation and basement walls can lead to future water problems and costly repairs.

The four most common solutions for fixing downspout drainage problems are:

Catch Basin: Designed to trap sediment, debris, contaminants and pollutants so that they cannot enter drainage pipes, catch basins are installed beneath downspouts. Catch basins easily connect to underground drain age pipes where the water can drain to a safe location.

Pop-up Emitter: When connected to the end of an underground drainage pipe, a pop-up emitter allows water to be diverted and released to safe areas away from structures and poor drainage areas. Its pop-up top allows water to be released when full while staying closed when empty to keep rodents and debris out of the system.

Dry Well: An underground structure that collects, retains and discharges stormwater on-site, a dry well is typically a round plastic container with holes in it to allow water to slowly seep out and return to the groundwater.

French Drain: A trench filled with gravel, rock or a gravel-free alternative containing a perforated pipe, a French drain directs stormwater away from a specific area, blocks the passage of excess debris, and collects water over the entire length of the drain instead of one particular spot.

For more information about these drainage solutions and to learn how to select and install products for a particular drainage problem, visit NDS’s Home Drainage Center.

NDS website:

NDS Video Resources Page for product installation:

NDS specification and technical information:

 NDS Drainage catalog: