Rain, rain get away.

Q - I am having a house built for me and I am having an argument with my gutter guy. He is using a splash board at the bottom of the downspouts and I want the water carried much further away. How far should it go?

John in Alpharetta

A - Oh sure, we don't get rain, we don't get rain, we don't get rain then we do get rain and we don't want it by our house. But I get it, and you are correct.

Keeping water away from your house is a very important part of home design. That includes proper guttering and proper slope of your landscape.

For example, by code your lot should be graded as to drain surface water away from foundation walls. The grade away from foundation walls shall fall a minimum of 6 inches within the first 10 feet.

(If that is not possible, then drains or swales should be provided to ensure drainage.)

Water coming down your downspout, by code, should be carried a minimum of 5 feet from the foundation. That means your little splash boards at the bottom of the downspouts are not enough by code to effectively carry the water away from your foundation.

All of your better foundation repair companies will tell you 10' is much, much more desirable. Much more. A lot more.

The best thing you can do for your foundation is to keep water away from it. By making sure your house and landscape are built correctly you will help avoid headaches in the future.