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Zero Knievel

Water seepage in basement wall.

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This has been an ongoing issue.  My two cents is that the french drain installed around the basement when we built the house has filled with sediment at one end, and water is not draining away.

 

It's happening in one spot, and it's not been raining the last few days, but in one section, the wall is not only wet to the touch, but there's this "silt" coming out of the brick, and I suspect I can see a slight bulge to the wall forming.

 

I don't know if "roto rooter" can clean out the french drain and restore normal drainage for the whole length or not.

 

I know a "quick fix" that we've debated (to deal with soil erosion and drainage) would be to install a french drain along the base of the hill behind the house to direct water off elsewhere and "build up" the land near the house to restore the original water flow away from the house.  I'm debating also adding a "waterproof layer" (thick plastic sheet) before re-grading the yard to ensure absorbed water flows away and not towards the house.

 

If this works, the basement wall should not need repairs, but I'm concerned that we could be looking at excavating down to the french drain to repair it or risk water intrusion eventually compromising the basement wall.

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French drains cant be fixed properly without digging up and replacing with proper stone again. 

 

That is the downside to them is that the open voids slowly fill and you develop leaks as the water has no route to go to escape the intended path.

 

Could see about doing some better water management drainage solutions around the house to promote water to flow away and around the foundation as unusual amounts of rain this year has everything saturated. 

 

 

 

 

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30 minutes ago, The Krypt Keeper said:

French drains cant be fixed properly without digging up and replacing with proper stone again. 

 

That is the downside to them is that the open voids slowly fill and you develop leaks as the water has no route to go to escape the intended path.

 

Could see about doing some better water management drainage solutions around the house to promote water to flow away and around the foundation as unusual amounts of rain this year has everything saturated. 

 

Roto Rooter says they can clean out the french drain...at least restoring some functionality, but yes, definitely need to address water runoff.

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They may be able to create a temporary bandaid fix but thats it. 

 

My job deals with stormwater runoff and bio retention ponds. Trust me, I deal with customers all the time who scream about water back ups. They quickly learn that their cheap ass contractor installed everything wrong or actually promoted sediment to be trapped in the voids of the media. 

 

Changing the flow of water around the help is the starting point and will allow water to slowly drain from french drain. The material needs to be replaced to be done correctly. 

 

 

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What kind of person would I look for to do this work?  What would they be listed under?

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You will want a contractor that specializes in home drainage or basement repairs. They will have the most experience with the materials needed. There should be a waterproof membrane on the outside of the basement wall. However, this membrane can be easily damaged when putting stone in as well. 

 

Dont know the age of your home, most companies that install our systems or drainage systems apply a filter fabric to help prevent fine silts from entering the actual media layer. 

 

 Just had a customer within 2 weeks complain. Pulled test samples and material was all packed tight and this was for 8 to 10 inches deep. No filter fabric layer and their 80k bio pond was full. It was a year old and installed wrong. Lots of fly by night  contractors are installing these wrong, just as many contractors are producing biofilter media wrong as well. Its a newer market that has engineers putting systems in new construction projects. 

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I don't know of a membrane layer, but I know we applied a tar-like coating when doing the project...over 25 years ago.  Dad refused to go with gutters, and it doesn't take an engineer to realize 20+ years of water falling off the roof will cause issues.  The front of the house drops off a good 8 feet or so from the basement, so no real risk of water eroding soil towards the basement.  It's only a 2 foot (max) overhang off the back.

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I build a lot of houses in the area I live in now and we get a lot of rain. I learned a few things:

 

1) There is no such thing as a waterproof basement

2) To keep a basement or crawlspace dry, move the water away with gutters and grading (at least 6" of fall 10' from the foundation)

3) Downspouts need to be connected to drains that open to daylight at least 10' from the foundation (to a grade running away from the foundation, of course)

4) If you don't do #2 and #3, no french drain in the world is going to keep your basement dry

 

The only time I had water in a basement was when the downspout connection to the gutter drain failed due to the settling of the fill. I fixed that connection and there was no more problem.

 

 

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1 hour ago, sluggo49 said:

4) If you don't do #2 and #3, no french drain in the world is going to keep your basement dry

 

And again I say, "Thanks, Dad."

 

Good Lord that man could be stubborn.

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6 hours ago, Zero Knievel said:

 

And again I say, "Thanks, Dad."

 

Good Lord that man could be stubborn.

Is this where I say:

 

"You might think I'm tough on you, but you'll thank me later."

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