Will the groundwater table rise and flood homes close to the lake?

As Vineyard City is not in a typical floodplain, based off of FEMA maps, it's important to understand the factors that can cause this to happen. The water table is the level at which the ground is saturated with water, and it can fluctuate depending on several factors. 

One factor that can cause the water table to rise is heavy rainfall or snowmelt. This can increase the amount of water that seeps into the ground and raise the water table level. Additionally, if the soil in the area is particularly permeable or the groundwater recharge rate is high, the water table may be more prone to rising.

If the water table rises too high, it can cause problems for homeowners, including seepage into basements, wet or saturated soil in yards, and damage to building foundations. 

To prevent these issues, it may be necessary to take steps to manage the water table around the home. This can include installing drainage systems to redirect water away from homes and properties, and waterproofing basements and foundations to prevent seepage.

Many homes in Vineyard City have drains around their home put in during the initial construction per city code. However, these drains must be maintained like any other part of their homes. 

In some cases, it may also be possible to lower the water table by installing a drainage well or a sump pump system. However, this can be a complex and costly process, and it's important to work with a qualified professional to ensure that it's done safely and effectively.

Most flooding in Utah County occurs when water tables get too high and water enters the basement through a window or door opening.

While Utah Building Code has requirements to ensure that licensed contractors provide for proper waterproofing of foundations and basements, there are instances where work may have been done without a permit. 

If a resident feels that they are prone to flooding or would like to take the precaution to get flood insurance, they can work with their insurance companies to first determine if their home is in a listed floodplain, as insurance companies have access to the same type of maps FEMA uses.  Insurance companies don’t directly provide flood insurance; rather, flood insurance is provided by FEMA through the insurance companies. 

Typical flooding occurs when water tables get too high and water enters the basement. Many insurance claims due to flooding are from water entering the basement from yards which have been graded with a negative slope, meaning the surface water drains towards the home and basement. This is also considered flooding.

The maps that the state provides for ground water tables are very general and provide information for those who may have irrigation wells. Prior to homes being built, the developer or contractor is required to submit a geotechnical report to the city building department to provide information such as soil types and groundwater levels. This determines the elevation of the finished floor of the home, and to the extent of how low a basement may be built. Newer homes are less likely to have issues with groundwater entering the home due to these types of state and city regulations.

The FEMA maps are available to the public and can accessed using the following web site:

FEMA Flood Map Service Center 

Show All Answers

1. Is Vineyard in a floodplain?
2. Will the groundwater table rise and flood homes close to the lake?
3. Can you explain groundwater levels and what that means for wells and basements?
4. Should residents close to the lake be concerned with water tables rising with historic snowpack levels? The lake levels are low, but do we see this being an issue?
5. What systems are in place that help with flood potential? How do detention ponds, land drains, underground channels, etc. mitigate flood potential?
6. Does Vineyard have sandbags available to residents?
7. From the city engineer standpoint, what level of concern might exist for the water table rising significantly, leading to flooding basements? Should our residents be concerned about this?
8. Is our ground water table generally low? Will it make a difference for people closer to the lake than those further from it?
9. How will those with septic tanks be affected by potential flooding?
10. Will we experience cracks or aging due to poorly maintained pipes being inundated with rising water?
11. How has the City staff prepared for potential flooding impacts?
12. Will our pavement suffer?
13. Will trees suffer as the soil becomes soupier, starving their roots of oxygen?
14. Is there anything Vineyard residents should know about ASRs?