If you want to enjoy a little bit of relaxation and to escape from the struggles of everyday life for a while, the backyard is the ideal place for it. The problem is that sometimes it’s not super peaceful because the garden isn’t even and is a little bit bumpy, which isn’t always very aesthetically pleasing!
Thankfully, there are actually a couple of ways that you can fix the issue in order to make the space look amazing.
If you want to be an expert on how to level your yard, then it’s definitely worthwhile to continue reading. Here we have 13 excellent tips to help you to remove any rough patches in your garden so you can have a relaxing time outside!
Do Some Planning
Planning is the first thing to do if you want to be successful! Here’s what you need to do.
First of all, you should walk around your yard. Figure out the area of the yard. This is great as it can help you to learn what amount of sand you are going to need.
You should try to avoid using topsoil. This is because there’s no real way of knowing what kinds of seeds or the amount of them that may be in there. All brands will claim to screen the topsoil well, but whether they actually do is debatable.
You can go to any home improvement store and find some sand, and it will usually be well priced.
It’s also worth noting that if you need more than a dozen bags there’s a decent chance that you are going to have to hire a truck. Furthermore, if you need even more sand than this then it’s a good idea to use a landscape provider. These will help you to get well priced sand in large quantities.
Finally, have a look on google and double check the reviews. You don’t want to buy from a company that doesn’t have a good reputation.
Finally, work out what method you are using. Once you have done this you can then ensure that you have the correct tools for the job.
How to Level the Backyard
The main thing that you need to consider when you are redoing your yard is how you are going to level it and deal with the top dressing stage. There are a wide variety of different options that you can use but it ultimately depends on the kind of lawn that you have or what you want to have.
There are a number of different tips that you can use in order to level your backyard in the way that you like it. The following are just a few tips that you can use.
4. Using a String
The first method of leveling your yard is to use a string. Using a string line is very helpful as with this you can raise and level off the soil effectively. All you need to do is put four wooden stakes on each corner of the yard.
When this is done you should then tie the string as this will help you to figure out the highest level of the lawn or backyard. String the string to a stake that’s next to it.
Alternatively you can also use a measuring tape which achieves the same effect.
When one of the sides is done, you can then get rid of the string from the stake and then do the same thing on the other side.
You should also make sure that you consider the elevation drop is taken into account – this is the area between the top of the lawn and the bottom of the lawn that you are leveling. If you need to fill a lot of space then you can use a big amount of filler material to do it.
5. Using Sand
When you are trying to level your backyard, you are going to need to use sand. You are going to have to evenly pour the sand over the area.
What Dirt Should You Use to Level the Yard?
People generally tend to go for sand. It’s easy to use and can be laid fairly quickly if you just need to level the yard. If you want to install some outdoor art and do some smart landscaping though, sand may not be the best choice as you will need to have more soil underneath it in order for the plant life to survive later down the line.
The great thing about sand is that it can give the yard a very solid structure when you are leveling. Of course, it’s really not the best choice when you need to lay things like drainage pipes and big rocks underneath it.
The last thing that you want to do is to lay paving on uneven ground. You need to ensure that the ground is leveled before laying the paving stones, otherwise it’s going to be a challenge to walk on the paving stones.
You can solve the problem by following the tips mentioned above. Use the string between the stakes to measure the level, and this will then help you to figure out where the pavers should be going.
Do It Yourself
If you want to level the land there are a number of steps you can follow including the ones mentioned below.
7. Getting Rid of Sod, Then Leveling
As the years go by, a lawn can start to become much bumpier. The problem is that you are going to need to level the yard again at this point in order to get rid of the bumps and lower areas.
If you want to have a great time in your garden while keeping your family safe, then it’s essential that the yard is free of bumps and totally smooth.
In order to get rid of the sod on the lawn and re-level it, all you need to do is rototill the grass. Alternatively you can also rent a grass cutter to do the job.
- Rototiller – There’s a good chance that you can borrow one of these for a few days from someone that lives nearby. It’s a good choice but it’s worth noting that it can make a lot of mess. This is basically because the grass gets mixed up with the soil and it can go everywhere. You may need to do some cleaning after using it.
- Grasscutter – In order to get a clean lawn and get rid of all of the grass, it’s usually best to get a grass cutter. You can buy your own or you can rent one from somewhere like a home improvement store or Home Depot.
- Stay away from the herbicides – the best thing to do is to use the grasscutter method, since it’s free of chemicals and doesn’t make a lot of mess. Herbicides, on the other hand, will kill the grass in about two weeks and the chemicals remaining can mean that growing the new grass can be difficult. It’s best just to avoid the entire problem and just use a grasscutter.
8. Use a Tractor or Roller to Level
When you have gotten rid of the sod, the next thing that you will need to do is level the soil in the backyard using a roller and a tractor. If you want to then you can also use a hand roller to do this.
This is ultimately the perfect way to level the entire yard. It’s worth taking a chance with the roller. It’s a pretty small piece of equipment and it is a great tool to have when you are trying to do maintenance on your lawn.
It’s worth keeping in mind that soil should usually consist of 25% air and 25% water. The vast majority of people will roll out their lawn during the spring as this is when it is lumpy.
9. Wet the Grass Then Use a Roller
If you are going to roll the lawn then you need to ensure that you do it properly. This means understanding the proper procedure. Rolling out the grass shouldn’t be an issue so long as you do it properly.
Make sure that you don’t use a very heavy roller machine. Be sure that the grass is wet and damp, though it shouldn’t be completely soaked with water. Finally, if possible you should try to roll the lawn during the spring months.
10. Put Dirt on the Sod and Reseed the Lawn
It’s usually best to plant the grass seeds in a systematic kind of way. In this case, it’s a good idea to put dirt over the sod and then you can begin to reseed again. It can help to hire lawn leveling equipment to do this.
Things to Avoid
11. Make Sure that You Do Certain Steps for the Leveling Process
Before you try to level, there are some things that you need to do first. First of all, make sure that you clean the area straight away. This will make leveling much easier later on.
In addition to this, you should also try to level the yard when it’s cool outside. You’re probably going to need to stop the job mid way through if it’s too hot, which is something that’s best avoided.
If you need to spend a lot of time leveling then it could possibly take quite a while for you to get the job done. For that reason, level the yard when it’s cool outside and get it all done in one go.
Use A Professional
If you are finding it challenging to follow the steps that we have outlined above, then it’s certainly worthwhile to hire a professional to do the work on your behalf. They will know what they are doing so you can avoid any potential mistakes. You can prevent any issues from cropping up before they even happen this way.
12. Do The Following Things
- Do your Research. If you are hiring a professional then you should make sure that you do plenty of research to ensure that you are using a company that has a good reputation.
- Don’t cut corners on price. Sure, nobody likes to spend more money than they have to. With that being said, you probably aren’t going to get the kind of results that you want if you opt for the lowest price possible. If you skimp on the price then there’s a good chance that the company isn’t going to do the job to the level that you would expect.
- Get a plan. Before the company does the job, you should get them to demonstrate how they are going to level the yard using a plan. Ask them about the kind of filler they are going to use too – in most cases, it’s best that it’s sand.
13. Call The Company’s References
When you have found a company that you like the sound of, you should then get in touch with their previous customers to see how they liked the service.
If this is not possible then you may be able to find some case studies online. It’s worth asking if the client has any before and after pictures that you can use as a reference point.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I level the backyard at a low price?
The best thing to do to cut the price is to add dirt to any low spots in the garden. It’s easy to do and doesn’t cost a lot of money. To do this, all you need to do is get some soil that’s mixed with sand – it should be a 1:1 ratio.
Alternatively you could also use pre mixed lawn leveling mix – you should be able to find this from your local gardening store.
Is it possible to level my yard using a tiller?
It is indeed an option that you can use. When the grass and soil have been rototilled together, all you will need to do is put some top soil on the top in order to make the lumps more even. You will then have a level lawn so long as you do it correctly.
Does it cost much to level a backyard?
In most cases it will generally cost a couple hundred dollars to level your backyard. If you have an especially large yard and you need to buy more materials though it can sometimes cost a few thousand.
That’s why it’s important to ensure that you are getting your materials from the right place in order to save yourself some money.