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crazyjmk

Bsmt leaking

15 posts in this topic

I need some input from all you experts out there regarding fixing a leaky bsmt. The soil around my home is clay with sand roughly 6 ft down under the clay in the front of the house. Clay extends about 8 ft towards the back (i have not dug down deeper than this so it might go further. Under the bsmt floor is just small rock for an inch or so and then solid clay.

The home was built in 1950, is a 1100sqft ranch and the lot slopes west to east. The basement is about 6 ft under grade. I have lived here about 7 years and every year it leaks a little more, not bad but it seeps up in any crack in the floor. It will seep in through the wall one block up in spots starting with any sort of winter thaw and continue till it really dries out in August. It does not leak as much on the east side I suppose because it drains better naturally with the sand.

Bsmt is half finished with a drycore subfloor installed on the east side

I'm considering two options:

1) Dig around the house, tar, plastic and tile out to a pit with a sump or tile it into the currently worthless sump I have already installed. The current sump runs twice daily in the spring or following a winter thaw. This was installed by me and is just a two ft deep hole in the floor with a sump pit, no tile runs to it. BTW I learned during this project that one should not run a power post hole digger in a house even if the clay is hard to dig out.

2) Bust up the floor and tile inside next to the foundation. I do not want to do this unless option 1 is worthless.

I am wondering if disturbing the clay around the home will make it leak worse as all the water will then flow to the path of least resistance, my wall.

Thanks in advance I hope this all make some sense.

J

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All I can tell you is that I did #2 and it was the hardest work I've ever done - and I have a walk out basement. Don't even think about it if you're over 40.

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id go with option 1, ive helped do this to a number of homes. It works quite well. It is a mess and expensive but if you plan to use your basement as a living space i think its the best option.

being you have clay in your yard, i would backfill with clay and besure to slope away from the house. im assuming you have rain gutters and they are working properly aswell.

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In a new construction application you waterproof the exterior of all the foundation walls and install draintile around the outside of the foundation, you also tie that draintile to a sump basket inside your home. Secondly their is a layer of pea rock and poly underneath your floor, that does two things it allows the water pressure to hit the rock layer and then migrate towards your sump basket, secondly the poly does not allow moisture to wick through the cracks in the floor.

In your case you should install waterproofing and draintile around the exterior of your home and tie it into a new sump basket inside your foundation that has a new sump pump installed in it. As long as your wrap your draintile in rock and a silt fabric you can backfill with existing clay without a problem. You should be ok with the little layer of rock that is already underneath your floor, the water should migrate to the basket without wicking. We use watchdog brand waterproofing but there are a lot of options out there.

Lastly and just as important make sure you have proper drainage away from the home atleast 8" of drop in the first ten feet and 2% after that, the more the better. Also make sure that you have gutters installed, everything you can do to keep water away from your foundation helps.

Good Luck

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I need some input from all you experts out there regarding fixing a leaky bsmt. The soil around my home is clay with sand roughly 6 ft down under the clay in the front of the house. Clay extends about 8 ft towards the back (i have not dug down deeper than this so it might go further. Under the bsmt floor is just small rock for an inch or so and then solid clay.

The home was built in 1950, is a 1100sqft ranch and the lot slopes west to east. The basement is about 6 ft under grade. I have lived here about 7 years and every year it leaks a little more, not bad but it seeps up in any crack in the floor. It will seep in through the wall one block up in spots starting with any sort of winter thaw and continue till it really dries out in August. It does not leak as much on the east side I suppose because it drains better naturally with the sand.

Bsmt is half finished with a drycore subfloor installed on the east side

I'm considering two options:

1) Dig around the house, tar, plastic and tile out to a pit with a sump or tile it into the currently worthless sump I have already installed. The current sump runs twice daily in the spring or following a winter thaw. This was installed by me and is just a two ft deep hole in the floor with a sump pit, no tile runs to it. BTW I learned during this project that one should not run a power post hole digger in a house even if the clay is hard to dig out.

2) Bust up the floor and tile inside next to the foundation. I do not want to do this unless option 1 is worthless.

I am wondering if disturbing the clay around the home will make it leak worse as all the water will then flow to the path of least resistance, my wall.

Thanks in advance I hope this all make some sense.

J

My home was built in 2000. I bought it 3 years ago. It is tiled underneath the floor. When asking my go-to handyman (who also built the home) where the tile was located (am considering a fence with a walkout basement. Didnt want to hit the tile) He said it was about a foot in from the walls and under the floor. He stated they have learned it is just as effective as it running the outside of the wall. basically it helps with the hydrostatic pressure. When the water has no where to go, it will find the cracks in the walls etc. Giving it a place to go will help.

Also if you dont have gutters and extended drain spouts. Do so asap. That alone can stop problems with water.

We have clay starting about 18 inches down. pea gravel is under our floor.

My deepest part of the basement is only about 3to 4 feet being as I am in a split level home.

I put a sump pump in the sump hole when I had the radon mitigators here. they had to seal the hole to fix the radon issue. Before that it didnt even have one in there.

Good luck. Someone who specializes in this might be able to give you a good quote on both options.

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If you truly never want to have water in your basement again because water is coming through the walls (only works for a block foundation not a poured) you need to do this. Get a jack hammer and cut all the way around the inside of the basement. Dig in a tile all the way around to the sump. Lay the tile. Now in each block at the bottom of the foundation you need to drill two holes in at the bottom of each block all the way though to the holes in the block. Then you put one end of the tube in the block and the other in the drain tile and fill it back up. At my parents house in town every time they got a heavy rain the had water in the basement. The house was built with drain tile on the inside and out but until we put this system in water was everywhere. After this was installed that was the end of the water problem.

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Thanks for all the input, I could only dig around half on the inside without tearing out the subfloor, I like the idea of backfilling with the clay to keep the same consistancy of soil.

When I excavate around the home, block foundation to I have to be worried about the wall buckling if it looks fine currently or just have at it. I will be renting a small backhoe from the DIYS place..my wife's a bit nervous smile I will have the utilities marked prior to digging.

Thanks,

J

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Another thing to consider before spending alot of money is

to make sure the soil on the outside of your home grades

away from your home.... that along with what was previously

posted about either putting gutters up if you dont already

have them or extending the downspouts if they are already there

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I had a wet basement in our home. Some years it'd be OK, and then a rain at an inconvenient time during the spring thaw, and we were pulling carpet again. Finally enough was enough. We called a professional (can give you the name if you want) and they recommended basically what your option number 2 is. Yep...it was a mess, a pain, and expensive. Jackhammered down to the footing, set a specially designed tile on it, ran the entire perimeter to a sump. Also drilled holes in the lowest block so that any water coming through the block runs into the tile as well. Long story short...not a drop since doing the project, and that's been through a couple of very wet springs. In hindsight, best money we ever spent on home improvements.

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I'd start out with a grade sloping away from the house and downspouts that will carry the water away. In other words, don't let the water get there to begin with.

Consider the waterproofing and poly on the exterior block a moister barrier and not water proofing. If water can't drain into the tile that hydraulic water pressure will find a way though.

If your going to install drain tile and a sump pit I'd definitely rent a gas powered cutoff saw. Use water to keep the dust down and cool the blade. Drain tubes into the bottom of the bottom block will go into the drain tile.

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I would agree with everything that has been said so far, however I would never use a gas powered saw in an enclosed area. Rent an electric model. They have the same power but not the fumes.

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I have poured walls in a older home the water will make the inside walls wet when really wet. Thinking of a paint to block out the moisture.

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SEAMLESS GUTTERS and quality landscaping... SLOPE elevation near home as much as possibe obviously, make a swail so water can run some where away from house. landscape near house w/ black poly and rock, wife may want some bushes and plants too. Have gutters go int drain tile as far away as resonible. if won't flow away naturally w/ a decent length of drain pipe??? Dig a hole 4'X6' and fill with rock oand cover with dirt. Might help, at atleast give you an idea what i would start w/!!!

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Thanks all for the responses. I have already sloped the landscape and seamless gutters are installed. Thanks again.

J

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if you've got a solid wall it wont buckle when you dig around the house. as long as you dont hit in with the excavator. Use caution when backfilling, you can push the wall in.

you will end up with extra soil because you've added tile and rock and because the spoil will now be in loose volume. dont use a packer just back fill evenly and let mother nature do the settleing, you will have to add more dirt in 6 months to a year.

Ive seen people use water to speed the settleing process, ive seen 1 person collapse a wall doing this too. That was a new basement with no structure on it yet. ive also seen walls collapsed because the skid steer doing the back filling was used to compact the soil around the basement. just use common sense. and i agree with an earlier post. Rent an elecrtic saw, you have know idea how bad the fumes get from gas saws.

On some new construction basements we had the owner ask us to put a tile about a foot away and a foot below the footing, and a second tile sitting right on the top of the footing. all covered with rock. never heard any problems with that. makes sense i guess. keeps as much water away from the basement as possible.

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