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Old 03-07-2010, 08:59 AM   #1
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Exterior Maintenance


Some openings on the side of the house need to be filled. What's the best way to do this?






My other issue is getting water away from the house. I need to extend the downspout, but I also don't have much room to run it in the driveway. I do get some water in the basement, as pictured below. The basement floor is sloped and there is a drain.





Prev. owner left lots of paint cans!!!!!!!!


Last edited by joetab24; 03-13-2010 at 04:37 PM.
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Old 03-07-2010, 05:40 PM   #2
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The gaps look like a job for mortar, as it looks like one crack in the first photo has been filled with.
An elbow on the downspout will direct the bulk of water out onto the driveway and will only project out about 6 inches, a lot less than the trash can . Call your local sanitation dept about the paint cans; most either have designated drop off points for such items are host one day drop off events from time to time.

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Old 03-07-2010, 05:43 PM   #3
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Does the fact that the water is coming in at floor level mean it's probably more than just the gutter?
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Old 03-07-2010, 07:16 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joetab24 View Post
Does the fact that the water is coming in at floor level mean it's probably more than just the gutter?
Being an older house, the waterproofing of the basement walls is certainly not on par with modern methods.
Secondly, if there was a perimeter drain systen installed at the bottom of the wall, it may have become silted in over the years, and no longer function properly.

Water usually appears at the floor because the typical construction method is for the basement walls to be built first, then the floor is poured within it, leaving the corner joint between them prone to being an easy spot for water entry.

Even with modern waterproofing, it is important to direct as much water as possible away from the structure.
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Old 03-10-2010, 12:07 AM   #5
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I would run that downspout off as far as possible. Sure, it might not look great seeing 20 or 30ft of tube, but its much better than having it come in your basement. I just moved into an old house (100+yrs) and have water problems in the basement. The best solution (short of digging out your foundation and waterproofing the exterior basement walls) would be to install a perimeter drainage system as troubleseeker mentioned. I plan on doing that next month.

Last edited by fetzer85; 03-10-2010 at 12:09 AM.
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Old 03-10-2010, 04:18 PM   #6
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fetzer,


what exactly would a perimeter drainage system involve?

i googled it and found a # of different methods...thanks!
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Old 03-11-2010, 01:52 AM   #7
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joe,

If you're looking for it on the web or youtube, try searching for 'french drains' as this is often what people refer to them as. It's a labor-intensive process but not overly difficult. These systems are often get the job done however their effictiveness can depend on the type of soil surrounding your house. For example, lots of clay can present a problem as it is not very permeable, which can cause water to travel horizontally instead of vertically. If this happens and it is directed towards your basement walls, hopefully it will then travel vertically, but I have seen cases where it would rather come in through the basement walls instead of soak down lower.

Anyways, they're never a bad thing to have. To implement it you will likely need to rent a jackhammer for a day. You would then mark off a section 1 foot wide surrounding the perimeter of your basement floor, approximately 6in away from your walls. You would then use the jackhammer to break up this 1ft wide section. Once that's complete your jackhammer use is over. You can then shovel and bucket out all the broked up concrete. After that, you'll want to dig down into the trench you created. The depth of this varies depending on who you ask, but generally its suggested to go down between 1 and 2 feet deep. Again, depending on the soil it may be easy for one person to go down 2ft and difficult for another to go down 1ft. Once you have this dug out all around the basement, you would then put gravel down generally 3-6" thick.

The next step is to lay drainage pipe in the trench you've created with the idea that it will carry water from around your basement into your sump pit, and then pump it outside. It's important to have a slope in your pipe, I believe 1/8" per ft is acceptable, so if you have a side of your basement wall that is 28ft long, the pipe should be approximately 7in lower where it enters the sump pit from where it starts in the opposite corner. This helps the water to flow properly and, in the case of sediment seeping in, can also help to keep the pipes clear.

There is filter paper you can buy to wrap the pipe in to keep dirt and other sediment from getting into your pipes. I suggest you use PVC with holes in it, your local home improvement store should carry this pipe with holes already drilled in it. The pipe is continuously connected all around the perimeter of your basement until it reaches your sump pit, usually in a corner. Once your pipe is wrapped in filter paper and in place with the proper slope, you can continue to cover it up with more gravel, until you are within an inch or two of your basement floor height. At that point you can stop and proceed with mixing up concrete and leveling off your floor. If you don't care how your basement looks and just want it dry, then I suppose this is an unnecessary step, however I've never seen anyone not do it.

That's about it. Searching the web and seeing pictures and videos might help out some more. There isn't much to it other than doing it the right way. You also want to make sure your sump pump is pumping the water far enough away from the house that it isn't just coming right back in. Good luck if you decide to tackle this, If I end up doing it then I'll probably start on a thread on my adventure. Take care!
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Old 03-11-2010, 11:46 AM   #8
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My sewage pipe is visibile in the picture, and it is sloped. Can I do this with that there?
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Old 03-11-2010, 05:13 PM   #9
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From the picture it looks to be a 4" pipe and up against the wall, and since you want to start about 6" from the wall it should give you an inch or two cushion - so yes, you should be able to still do it.
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Old 03-13-2010, 01:31 PM   #10
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A few questions....

As I mentioned previously, the water entering my basement is in the back right corner where the floor and wall meet. When looking at the pic of my driveway, water is near where the trash can and downspout are, but obviously at floor level.

I am in the process of arranging to have my gutters cleaned. I might even get new ones, but we have so many trees near the property the darn things get clogged rapidly. Maybe I need a gutter guard of some sorts??

Anyway, at this point, very little water is even coming out of the downspout pictured above because my gutters are clogged.

Does the location of the water in the basement give a clue as to where/how it might be entering the house, or is that too simplistic?

Could water seeping in the dirt near the front of the house (in the foreground of the picture) be how the water is entering?

I have a neighbor who says she dug all of this dirt out and sealed the foundation? I wasn't sure this would work for me because I was focusing on the area near the downspout, where there is some dirt but it is under the siding, where the house extends out, and difficult to access.

If I don't dig all of this out, I am thinking I should better grade the dirt on the side of the house.

Also, could the driveway be an issue? Water seems to pool here a bit. Maybe it's not graded well enough? I don't see any cracks in it, but i guess that could be an issue too.

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Old 03-15-2010, 02:54 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joetab24
I am in the process of arranging to have my gutters cleaned. I might even get new ones, but we have so many trees near the property the darn things get clogged rapidly. Maybe I need a gutter guard of some sorts?? Anyway, at this point, very little water is even coming out of the downspout pictured above because my gutters are clogged.
If your gutters appear to have any issues or are very old, I would just get them replaced. They're an incredibly important part of your house functioning properly. I would get the high quality aluminum gutter guard with the small holes, I have it and it works great. Prior to getting my gutters replaced, I had water spilling over on to the driveway and coming in through the basement wall. It sounds like this might be your problem as well. Before you do anything I would address your gutter issues, make sure your downspout is getting directed far down the driveway, and then see how the basement is doing during the next rain.

Quote:
Does the location of the water in the basement give a clue as to where/how it might be entering the house, or is that too simplistic? Could water seeping in the dirt near the front of the house (in the foreground of the picture) be how the water is entering?
Generally yes it does. For example, if you have a wet corner in the basement then you should be able to go outside during a good rain and get a decent idea of why its happening by looking around that corner. If your soil has a high clay content then water may be getting channeled to certain spots from further away then normal, but it just depends.

Quote:
I have a neighbor who says she dug all of this dirt out and sealed the foundation? I wasn't sure this would work for me because I was focusing on the area near the downspout, where there is some dirt but it is under the siding, where the house extends out, and difficult to access.
This is a great solution and is how new houses are now built however its even more labor intensive than the perimeter drain system in the basement.

Quote:
If I don't dig all of this out, I am thinking I should better grade the dirt on the side of the house.
Yes, at the least you should establish a good grade away from the house. Its a relatively cheap thing to do and can really help in the long run.

Quote:
Also, could the driveway be an issue? Water seems to pool here a bit. Maybe it's not graded well enough? I don't see any cracks in it, but i guess that could be an issue too.
Its ok if it pools up a little and then funnels down the driveway, but if it pools up and drains off to the side by your house, then you have a problem. I would check it out the next time you have a good rain and try to see which case is happening.

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