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Old 02-28-2009, 07:51 PM   #1
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Grading Soil during Chicago WInter


Hello:

I recently bought a house that desperately needs the soil graded.(picture below) Is it possible during these cold months, (if there is no snow present) to add soil and grade it away from the house. During the last heavy rain we received a small amount of water in the basement. Also, what kind of soil is recommended? I have read pros and cons for topsoil.


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Old 03-01-2009, 11:35 AM   #2
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Grading Soil during Chicago WInter


Ayuh,... About the Only way you do it is with Imported, Not Frozen, topdirt....

It appears that the local material is Frozen,... You'd have to Bust it up to regrade what's there....
If you can find a supply of topdirt, it looks like a yard or 2 would do what you need to do.....

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Old 03-01-2009, 12:11 PM   #3
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Grading Soil during Chicago WInter


It looks like you have concrete above that dirt area
You need to maintain 8" min between dirt & wood, I like to keep about 12". I'd just build it up with topsoil, depending upon how much you need you could get a small delivery or buy bags at HD/Lowes
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Old 03-01-2009, 12:44 PM   #4
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Grading Soil during Chicago WInter


If your basement is leaking, it could be a bigger issue than just the grade of the soil.
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Old 03-01-2009, 01:06 PM   #5
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Grading Soil during Chicago WInter


My side yard was about the same
I regraded & extended the downspouts - also used cement to extend the water going further from the house
With these improvements the little bit of water that came in during heavy storms stopped

I also had a back patio that was sloped wrong & water would come towards the house. I built a sunroom on the patio. Check the slopes/drainage every where along the perimeter. I also dig & buried a drain pipe to take water from the downspouts on one side of the house 20'+ away

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Old 03-01-2009, 08:07 PM   #6
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Grading Soil during Chicago WInter


Looks like you've got a walkway a few feet from the foundation wall, in which case it may be very difficult to improve drainage away from the foundation by altering grade.

I've performed many inspections at homes in the Chicago area where walkways and/or closely adjacent buildings on adjacent lots made significant improvements of grading difficult or impossible. Frequently it's impractical under such conditions to achieve anything like optimum grade away from the house, however the majority of cases it's possible to produce significant and sometimes even dramatic improvements in water intrusion into basements by improving water removal with properly sized and located gutters, downspouts,and leaders discharging at improve locations - which as it happens is usually much less expensive than regrading or basement "waterproofing" options.

Can you post a few more pictures, one for each side of the house, to give us an clearer idea general site conditions?

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Old 03-01-2009, 11:55 PM   #7
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Grading Soil during Chicago WInter


Quote:
Originally Posted by Scuba_Dave View Post
My side yard was about the same
I regraded & extended the downspouts - also used cement to extend the water going further from the house
With these improvements the little bit of water that came in during heavy storms stopped

I also had a back patio that was sloped wrong & water would come towards the house. I built a sunroom on the patio. Check the slopes/drainage every where along the perimeter. I also dig & buried a drain pipe to take water from the downspouts on one side of the house 20'+ away

Did you put screens on the gutter downspouts to prevent leaves from going down the gutter drain and possibly getting trapped in the buried drain pipe?

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