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Old 10-24-2008, 08:14 AM
265 posts, read 1,036,655 times
Reputation: 105


We live in San Antonio where most soil is incredibly rocky and doesn't absorb much water (thus flooding). That said, our neighborhood is built on a slope and when my neighbor runs his sprinklers every other day, the water drains into our yard. Great problem to have, right? Free water. But the problem is, it drains in a pattern that doesn't help us out in the front yard or back. In the front, it gushes down our small slope of a driveway out into the street rainwater drain. In the back, it comes under the fence and takes a muddy path down the back of the house to our patio, where it pools and creates more mud. I have three kids who like to play in the back so the back is more of an immediate concern.
Have talked to the neighbor and he didn't change his settings. He is not home at the time they come on - he sets them for about 8:30 a.m. and they come on after he has gone to work so I don't think he understands what we're talking about. The sprinklers run ridiculously long, for 30 minutes at a time - down here, all you need is about 10 for a good quick soak, more than that doesn't get absorbed. Don't want to make a big deal because we have only lived here a couple months, don't know him and because it appears he doesn't care. And... because it could work out to our benefit if we could use the drainage effectively!
It is so wasteful! Do you have any ideas how we can harness the drainage and distribute it throughout our yard more efficiently?
What can help the back yard mud path - pea gravel? Rock garden? Any soil we put down would get washed away. This path is also where water dumps off the roof when it rains so no grass would ever grow there. (No gutters - not unusual down here).
We just moved into this house & everything is new to us!
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Old 10-24-2008, 09:14 AM
Location: A little suburb of Houston
3,702 posts, read 15,309,907 times
Reputation: 2024
Allowing his water to run onto your property is a form of tresspass and you can take legal action against him. Write him a CRRR letter politely requesting that he remedy the situation (keep a copy). The letter should enforce that you are serious about the issue. If he fails to correct it, get a landscaper to give you an estimate for the cost to remedy the run-off problem then take your neighbor to court. Just my opinion, consult your attorney for best advise.
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Old 10-24-2008, 09:43 AM
Location: Connecticut
1,570 posts, read 4,559,362 times
Reputation: 1076
I would talk to him again and ask him if he would consider running his system earlier in the morning. Not sure why someone would have it going off at 8:30am?? That might give the water enough time to drain before the kids are out there.
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Old 10-24-2008, 09:47 AM
3,020 posts, read 22,202,878 times
Reputation: 2667
Default Well you can just collect it.....

You can basically dig a ditch across the area. Put in a plastic liner, maybe a perf pipe, some gravel and direct the water to where you would like to use it. Just think the ditch going across the area to intercept the water, then have that slope downward at some point to direct the water into the area you prefer. Maybe built a pond or something to hold it for a while if needed. This same idea is used all the time with collecting drains around a house to prevent water damage / problems.

In most states having run off of this manner is illegal. Even rain runoff must be kept on the property under certain circumstances.

You could have the option of just using the water or busting his cookies. Maybe the dude has a zillion dollars and does not care what it costs. Collecting the water and recycling it to your own use might be the best way.
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Old 10-24-2008, 10:09 AM
3,447 posts, read 8,606,771 times
Reputation: 5338
WE had a drainage issue and hubby dug some trenches and put in perforated pipe covered with a permeable sleeve. We releveled and reseeded the area. Moved the water from the lake it created in front to the back wooded area.

Right now rocks and rock formations are the in thing and would give you a nice looking and non muddy area for water to pool and drain although it would not recapture the water. To do it right, I would find a landscape professional.

Another idea is to move the water to a sunken rain barrel with a pump handle to use for other purposes.
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Old 10-24-2008, 05:20 PM
Location: Knoxville
4,039 posts, read 18,270,187 times
Reputation: 4543
You could walk over and adjust his sprinkler head to reduce the flow of water, but not legal.
You could go and talk to him again and explain your problem, and maybe ask him to walk over and see for himself.
You might be able to regrade the area, and divert the water to it either works better for you, or keeps it on his property (build small dam at drainage path).

OR cut the wires to the sprinkler controls, remove the sprinkler heads and install plugs.
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Old 10-24-2008, 07:21 PM
Location: In The Outland
6,023 posts, read 10,825,721 times
Reputation: 3535
Build a fish and frog pond and let him provide most of the water !
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Old 10-24-2008, 10:40 PM
3,191 posts, read 7,663,666 times
Reputation: 2165
maybe call the city...we had a problem once where someone had blocked the natural flow of rainwater, causing it to back up on us...the city helped.
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Old 10-17-2010, 01:41 PM
107 posts, read 321,611 times
Reputation: 73
I have a similar problem. Talking with the neighbor didn't help. He just didn't care. - If you are downslope, then drainage through your yard of lots of excess irrigation water from an uncaring, careless neighbor (and, of course, from occasional rainfall) is a given, and you can't do anything to stop it. -- Rainfall, of course, is not a problem, since it doesn't occur every day, and it doesn't keep my backyard muddy, like a neighbor's daily excessive watering does. --

In any event, I am installing perforated drainage pipe with a collection drain mouth, made from Quikcrete, on the property line where the water enters my property. It will collect the excess irrigation water, direct it through the drainage pipe and take it to the far edge of my property, where it will be released into my downslope neighbor's yard. The reason for the drainage pipe being perforated is to collect any standing water that my collection drain may miss.

I would prefer to direct the water flow somewhere else, but the flat terrain and lack of slope won't allow it.

But I will also collect some of it in a drywell, hopefully making it less of a nuisance to my downslope neighbor - with whom I have a good relationship - and who understands the problem (and hates the inconsiderate upslope neighbor even more than I do).

Insofar as collecting it for your own use, a manufactured drywell could do that (a specially designed plastic tank that you bury in the ground - which costs about $200 to $500, depending on size). But you would have to install a pump to utilize the water from the drywell.

I don't favor pond installation as a solution. Who wants a frog pond in a typical small residential backyard? Yuk!! -- I am separately installing a small (6 foot x 8 foot) koi pond in my own backyard, but it won't admit the water from my neighbor's runoff, over which I have no control as to purity, lack of pesticides, etc.

And running the sprinklers at a different time of day would, of course, not help. Mud lingers and when refreshed daily with new water, it is a permanent fixture.

Last edited by Gill O'Blarney; 10-17-2010 at 01:50 PM..
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Old 10-17-2010, 03:43 PM
Location: Seaford, Delaware
3,450 posts, read 15,720,115 times
Reputation: 2533
In San Antonio there are permanent water restrictions on what time of day you can have a sprinkler system running. I believe he is out of the limits of the time to water.
I would talk to him again and let him know it is serious for you. Change the direction of the sprinklers and the time.
If he doesn't, just call 311 and report him. See how fast the water cops show up and he gets a ticket.
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