Balcony drainage might not be the most romantic topic, but it’s a vital component of the balcony’s overall structure. Although your balcony might already have drainage, sometimes it’s worth upgrading or changing it for better results.
In this article, we’ll cover everything you should know about balcony drainage and suggest some balcony drainage ideas.
Considerations for Balcony Drainage
At the most basic level, balcony drainage is the system for removing excess water from your balcony. It might be as simple as a hole in the wall or something more complex like embedded channels.
Drainage is important for a balcony because standing water can cause structural damage and is bad for your health. What’s more, you probably don’t want to go splashing around in puddles every time you use your balcony.
6 Important Things to Know About Balcony Drainage
1. There are rules
If you plan to add (or make changes to) your balcony drainage, be aware that there are rules. These are typically at state, city and local levels, so it’ll be worth checking with a building manager or local architect for more information.
2. Floors should slope
When installing a new floor on your balcony, it must have a small gradient. In the same way that streets slope towards the sidewalk, a gradient helps water run towards the drain. Ideally, balcony drainage should slope away from the building.
3. Make sure artificial grass has drainage
Artificial grass balcony drainage is vital for stopping water collection under the grass layer. On normal lawns, you use a layer of gravel or aggregate as drainage.
Of course, this might not be possible on a balcony, so consider using pond liner as your artificial grass balcony drainage. Install it under the artificial grass so the water doesn’t seep into anything and instead runs to the drain.
4. Put your plants in drainage trays
Regardless of your balcony drainage, you don’t want to add more water than is necessary. As such, it’s helpful to put your plants in drainage trays that collect water.
5. Know where the runoff goes
If you’re on an upper-level balcony, know where your balcony drainage goes. Ideally, it should end up in a drain, but if it flows off the side, it could be draining onto a neighbor’s balcony. Make sure you fix this!
Other than making structural changes, your only option would be to add some extra guttering to at least divert the runoff away from your neighbor’s balcony.
6. A sump pump is a good backup
A sump pump is one of the best balcony drainage ideas if you can’t make structural changes. You can rent or buy them, but having one on hand to deal with standing water is helpful. Simply pump the water into a storm drain or sink to remove it from your balcony.
Final Thoughts on Balcony Drainage
Hopefully, some of these balcony drainage ideas will help you look after your outdoor space. Also, don’t ignore building inspections, as it’s best to find out about water damage as early as possible. Of course, having decent balcony drainage should stop this from happening in the first place!