If you’re like me, you probably enjoy spending time outdoors in your yard during the summer. However, if you have a neighbor who likes to drain their pool into your yard, that enjoyment can quickly dwindle. Is it legal for your neighbor to constantly do this?
It is illegal to cause flooding or damage to neighboring properties when draining your swimming pool, or any other water source. Draining a pool is a tedious effort, but it should be done per regulations to avoid any legal repercussions.
So what do you do when, even though it’s illegal, your neighbor is still draining their pool water into your yard! In this article, we’ll discuss the various options you could take to inform your neighbor and even take action against your neighbor (hopefully it doesn’t come to that!).
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Here’s a Quick Pro Tip!
When having a straightforward conversation with your neighbors regarding their drainage issues, it’s important that you have the facts straight and you have the necessary evidence if you need to take the matter further. Ensuring you have a security system in place will help you in the future!
Security cameras to gather evidence:
1. Blink Outdoor Security Camera – Wireless and weather resistant while also working with Alexa.
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Soggy Yard Due to Water
Waking up one morning to puddles of stagnant water or soggy patches in your yard can be frustrating.
This is especially the case if this is not the first time your neighbor drains their pool into your yard. Let’s look at the details of pool drainage.
Can My Neighbor Drain Their Pool in My Yard?
Your neighbor can not drain pool water into your yard. Check your local property laws or hire a real estate attorney if your yard is suffering damages. However, most times it can be cleared up by simply talking with your neighbor.
No matter the cause, pool water can be quite damaging to lawns, gardens, and your home if your yard slopes towards it. This is mostly due to the high levels of chlorine in pool water.
Although the pool water might not immediately kill your lawn, prolonged exposure could damage your lawn.
How to Stop Neighbors From Draining Their Pool Into My Yard?
The first thing to do is to have a conversation with your neighbors. Speak with them directly about your concerns with their pool drainage. Sometimes, the neighbors are not even aware of the issue.
Not all neighbors are that understanding though. If they are not concerned with your issues, you could contact your city bylaw official.
You could also contact a real estate attorney who would take the next necessary steps.
How Do I Inform My Neighbors They Are Draining Their Pool Into My Yard?
Having a direct conversation with your neighbors regarding your concerns is the most straightforward way to inform your neighbors. This is especially effective if you have a friendly relationship with your neighbors.
Other than a direct conversation, you could inform your neighbors by writing them a letter. Be sure to make a copy and keep it to yourself, should you need it in the future.
We also recommend taking photos or videos to show your neighbor your concerns.
How to Stop Uphill Neighbors From Draining Their Pool Into My Land?
The first option is to discuss your concerns with your neighbor. Sometimes your neighbor might not be aware they are draining their pool into your yard and the issue can be resolved quickly.
Alternatively, you could write a letter to your neighbor. This is more approachable if you do not have a friendly relationship with your neighbor.
It’s also advised to keep a copy of the letter to ensure proof of notice in the future.
You might also enjoy our post on If You Can Put a Pool in Your Front Yard
Neighbors Pool Draining Flooded My Apartment?
If your neighbor’s pool draining causes your apartment to flood, you should contact a real estate attorney. These professionals should help you file a damage claim against your neighbor and hopefully resolve the issue.
It’s important to have actual evidence of flooding or damage to your property. This evidence could be photos or videos that clearly show the damage inflicted by your neighbor’s pool water drainage.
How to Stop The Water
You know the source of your soggy lawn is the neighbor’s pool, but how do you make it stop? Let’s discuss the options that you have to stop your neighbor from draining their pool into your yard.
How to Make My Neighbors Stop Flooding My Yard With Their Pool Draining?
Having a straightforward conversation with your neighbors should prompt them to stop draining their pool into your yard. Alternatively, you could write a letter addressed to your neighbors to make them stop.
The last option would be to contact a city bylaw official or a real estate attorney to enforce the law. This could lead to your neighbors receiving a hefty fine.
Depending on what your relationship is with your neighbor this might be an easy hurdle or a mountain.
How Do I Keep Neighbors’ Pool Water Out of My Yard?
You could reroute the water into a dry well. A dry well collects the water and reroutes it to the street or a public storm drain. This is an excessive option but it would help if your neighbors do not respond to your concerns.
Alternatively to a dry well, some also prefer to use a french drain. This drain assists water to drain naturally from your yard.
While not impossible to do on your own, installing a french drain is not easy to accomplish without professional help.
You can purchase this french drain and have a pro install it for you.
How to Block Neighbors’ Pool Water?
To block the neighbor’s pool water you could install a french drain at the point where your neighbor’s water enters your property. A french drain helps to prevent flooding and drain your yard.
You could also install a dry well in which the water can be stored until emptied.
If your neighbor resides on a sloped property that is higher than your own, chances are their water might runoff into your yard sometime or another.
Can I Build a Retaining Wall to Keep Out the Neighbor’s Water?
A retaining wall will help prevent runoff from your neighbor’s water and from any severe flooding if installed correctly. This is a great choice if your neighbor’s yard slopes toward your house.
A retaining wall is a vertical wall, usually enforced with decorative stones or bricks. On average these walls are between three and four feet and it does not require any anchors.
This wall needs to be properly drained for the water to flow ‘naturally’ and not become stagnant behind the wall.
How to Block Water Drainage From a Neighbor’s Pool?
You could install a french drain near the property line, especially near the spot where your neighbor’s pool water enters your yard. This will keep your lawn safe, prevent flooding, and transport water to a public drain.
You could discuss the costs of installing a french drain with your neighbor and suggest splitting the cost or any amicable conclusion.
In most cases, your neighbor would be willing to help finance a french drain since it is their pool water that is posing a threat to your lawn.
Permits and Laws
Of course, there are laws and regulations regarding swimming pool drainage. These regulations differ from city to city, but in most cases, they have the same general principles. Let’s discuss these principles.
Do You Need a Permit to Drain a Pool?
Some areas require permits and others simply have a protocol that you should adhere to. The best practice would be to contact your local city officials and enquire if you need a permit to drain a pool.
Before contacting city officials you should have a water disposal plan. Usually, pool water gets drained into your sewer cleanout but not all cities have the same regulations.
If you’re unsure about where to dispose of your pool water, local city officials will be able to help.
What Are the Swimming Pool Drainage Regulations?
Each city has different regulations regarding when, where, and how you can drain a swimming pool. Pool water contains a lot of chemicals, especially chlorine which could be dangerous to the surrounding plant and animal life.
Most cities restrict draining an unmaintained pool into street drains. You would need to clean and clear the pool water before being allowed to drain it out.
However, it is illegal to drain your pool across a neighbor’s yard.
Is It Illegal to Drain Pool Water Into Someone Else’s Yard?
It is illegal to drain pool water, or any water, across neighboring properties where erosion or flooding could occur. The exact regulations differ slightly per city. Your local city officials would be able to inform you exactly about your city laws.
Some cities also offer a service where a city official will come inspect the alleged damage.
If they find sufficient evidence that your neighbor is draining pool water into your yard, they will leave a written notice for your neighbor.
Legal Options After My Neighbor Flooded My Yard While Draining Their Pool?
If your neighbor floods your yard while draining their pool and offers no compensation for the damages, you can sue them in a civil case. There are real estate attorneys who specialize in property disputes.
However, most likely you will actually lose money as you would have attorney fees and court fees to pay.
The best option would be to officially inform your neighbors (make sure you have proof) and if nothing happens, contact city officials to take it further.
Other Drainage Options
Now that you know pool water should not be drained into neighboring yards, let’s discuss all the other options you have to drain your swimming pool water.
You might be surprised to know you can reuse your pool water!
Where Should You Drain Pool Water?
In most cases, you can use your home’s sanitary sewer cleanout to drain your pool water. However, most cities have regulations about the pH level and chlorine content of this water. Check your city laws before draining into the sewer cleanout.
You could dechlorinate your pool water and reuse it to irrigate your garden. You should be careful not to flood neighboring properties.
If your water is extremely contaminated or green and you could contact a contractor to pump out the water.
Can Pool Water Be Drained Into the Street?
In most cities, it is illegal to drain your pool water into the street or storm drains. Pool water contains different pollutants that may degrade the local water quality. It’s not safe for human or animal use.
Streets have many storm drains, whose purpose is to quickly redirect rainwater into local streams to prevent flooding.
If every property starts to drain their pools into these storm drains, local streams and lakes would get contaminated with chlorine, ultimately endangering wildlife.
You might also enjoy our post on How to Keep Neighbors From Using Your Pool
Can Someone Drain Their Pool Into a Garden?
Swimming pool water can be dechlorinated, which can then be used to irrigate your garden. When using pool water to irrigate your garden, be sure that the water doesn’t run off onto neighboring properties.
Chlorine contamination can cause scorched leaves of plants and trees. Leaves might also be smaller and less healthy than usual.
An excessive amount of exposure to chlorine, like draining a pool, could even kill most plants.
Can a Pool Be Drained Into a Sewer?
Most cities and municipalities prefer swimming pool water to be drained into a sewer. The city’s sewage system will treat the pool water along with the sewage and eventually the water will be pumped into the public water system.
Do not drain your pool water into the septic tank. Some pools have a direct sewer connection to allow easy drainage, others need to be drained through a drainage hose.
Either way, be sure to check with your city officials before attempting to drain your pool.
Where Can I Drain My Pool Water?
Most cities prefer pool owners to drain their pool water into the sewer cleanout. This can usually be located right outside the property line of your yard. You should not drain the chlorinated water onto your yard.
However, you can dechlorinate your water and then use it to irrigate your garden and lawn. When doing this you should take care not to cause flooding or damage to your neighbor’s yard.
As a last resort, you could hire a contractor to pump out your pool water.
Can I Drain My Pool Into My Yard?
You can drain your pool into your yard if your water is clean, unchlorinated, and has a balanced pH level. If your pool water does not meet these criteria, you should not drain it into your yard.
Using clean pool water to irrigate your garden is a sustainable method to lower the water bill. Your pool water, or irrigation water, should also never run off into neighboring yards.
You will be held liable for any damages.
What Kind of Edging Do You Need to Stop Water From Getting in Your Yard?
Concrete edging might be the best option to keep water out of your yard, however, edging, in general, is not very effective for water drainage. You could install a french drain right behind your concrete edging.
A french drain will assist in transporting the water away from your yard and into a local storm drain.
You could also consider adding a retaining wall at the edge of your yard to help drainage before the water reaches your lawn. If all else fails, you may need to regrade your yard.
If your neighbor’s pool water is running into your yard, the best advice we could give is to have a straightforward discussion with them.
Most times, the neighbor would be willing to find an alternative solution.