The patio looks like in the picture. I have no idea if this is standard practice but it looks dumb to me. There is a very small space between blocks and that is filled with dirt. Virtually the patio holds the water in heavy rain when the runn off water should go over the edge of a graded patio. I am wondering what would be the best way to improve the situation. I am thinking about drilling holes like below, one per block. I have no idea how easy it is. The other option would be to enlarge the spaces between the blocks. The cement blocks are beveled, the maximum diameter of a hole can be 0.5"

enter image description here

  • Please clarify: Are you actually having a problem, or worried that you may have a problem? – keshlam Oct 31 '14 at 0:25
  • I do have a problem. Please check my last around 7 questions in this forum. The patio collects water near the wall where due to capilarity the water ascends on the wall ...see my previous questions, there are lots of pictures and diagrams, sorry for not duplicating those here – MiniMe Oct 31 '14 at 1:05
  • Didn't realize it was the same issue; thanks. My uninformed reaction is that I'm not sure the holes wouldn't just get clogged. I suspect you either need a real drain or sluceway, or you need to take up that patio and build a real leachfield that can hold and disperse the expected amount of incoming water... and yes, you need to grade things so the water flows toward whatever escape path you're giving it. – keshlam Oct 31 '14 at 2:42
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    User2059078 is rather hard to distinguish/recognize - was that other question by User2049078 or User2059079? Who knows? A somewhat more recognizable username might improve the odds of people noticing that they are all from the same user...and was Jean ValJean 60842, or 60841? Wait, no the internaught says 24601. Unless you're 42, numbers are just hard to remember anyone by. – Ecnerwal Oct 31 '14 at 2:47
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    It's not complicated. Take, as an example, keshlam (which may nor may not be, or even relate to, his/her real name, so as far as I know it's the same as "anonymous" unless picked not to be) has been around here for a little while. I see keshlam, I know which user that is, if that user has asked a lot of questions about a subject recently I know that, without taking the extra step of clicking on the user name and reviewing the questions. Pure social engineering; by choosing to be a number, you break that engineering. An alternate approach is to link to related questions you have asked. – Ecnerwal Oct 31 '14 at 3:13

One easy solution is to rent a grinder, and a diamond blade, and cut (from the top) channels into the slab (where your drill holes are positioned). then you can insert your runoff pipes and then fill the holes with fresh cement.

enter image description here

Unfortunately, I don't see any practical way to drill at the angles which you propose, you will have to remove paving and create space to drill at those angles.

  • that might actually work, I can eventually enlarge the space between blocks just at grade level, I will not cut all the way down to the base. Thanks – MiniMe Mar 2 '15 at 21:17

Drain holes aren't a practical solution here. If you insist on drilling them, you'll need a high powered impact drill with a concrete bit, then you either have to dig a trench on the outside to get the drill positioned parallel to the ground or pry up the concrete so you can drill above ground. At that point, you're still going to have a maintenance chore as those holes will clog up. In the winter, they may fill with water, freeze, and crack the concrete.

As such, I'd highly recommend just getting rid of the concrete. It's a poor design to begin with. Not sure what the original builder was thinking by putting that lip on it. Unless maybe the goal was to use it as an ice rink in the winter? :)

As it's not a monolithic slab of concrete, but in separate blocks/pieces, you may get away with just removing a couple piece at the low end of the patio to act as a funnel to allow the water to run off from that one spot. You may have to dig a dry well or something to accept that amount of concentrated water, though. I think it'd be better to remove them all instead.


Firstly, there should be a way for the water to runoff OR drain. So, you could either raise the brick so that it is slightly above the cement block OR remove some brick where the water collects and install a catch basin that carries the water away from the patio (at a pitch/angle away from patio of course).


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