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Old 09-02-2008, 02:08 PM   #1
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Basement holes

Hi eveyone! We have a peculiar situation in our basement and I would like to explain them to you and show you a couple of pics and hope that you can give us your opinion on our situation.

We are removing the linoleum on our laundry room floor as we had some sewer back up during a severe thunderstorm. (Early summer, but we were told it was ok to keep the linoleum, but we decided against it) The backup was contained to the immediate area and the sump pump pumped it out for us.

So we have started to remove some of the flooring under the washer and dryer and surprised to find holes with pipes in them. Also there is water in these holes that appears to be muddy ground water. When you empty these holes they fill back up. We had fast heavyish rains yesterday and light rain today. The one square hole has what appears to be a clean out pipe in it, although it is submerged under water at this time. The other hole is round with a pipe in it with what appears to be a screw or bolt or somthing comming out of the top. We have weeping tiles that appear to be working as they are draining into our sewer line. Over the past two days our sump pit is draining every couple of hours.
We have been told by neighbours that this neighbourhood has very high water tables, could this be the reason, and is it of concern? Our home was built in the late 30's, but the foundation was poured 20-25 years ago.

First hole, sorry about the mess on the floor, but that is the mess of the left over sewage

THe second hole

Thanks so much!

Kyle & Tiff


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Old 09-02-2008, 06:41 PM   #2
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The second hole (round) looks like a toilet flange to me. Thats my first impression.
Were the appliances in place, when you bought the property?
The first one (square) may be an access to a back-flow gate in the sewer!
I'm not a plumber, so perhaps someone with plumbing expertise may know!


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Old 09-02-2008, 07:12 PM   #3
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Pretty sure that first one is a city-ordinanced anti-backup valve coded by many municipalities, here in Montreal too. It has a flapper that prevents sewage or rain water from coming into your house. Attached to the main drain almost in a straight line...

Older versions of the valve were located in the basement and relied on gravity to close the valve. If debris got caught in the flapper, the valve did not close tight. Because of its unreliability, valves were discouraged and even prohibited in some communities. Your insurance may be affected by their being or not being there and functional...
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