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Old 11-27-2010, 09:49 AM   #1
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Basement Flooding mystery

Hi. I hope someone here has some ideas for us because we've exhausted all of our resources on this. We have an old house with a semi-finished basement. We have had some incredibly heavy rains in short periods of time over the past couple of years (especially the summer of 2010) and we are getting water in our basement. Here are some details:

We have a sump pump with drain tile around the perimeter (we had that put in when we had a new floor put in). There is no drain in our basement floor (no way to get sewer backup). What happens when it rains is this... I've watched the sump pump and no water is dumping into it from the DT. Then, all of a sudden, water pours in on one side of the house at the foundation line. At this point, the sump pump then kicks on and water is pouring through the DT into the pit so fast, we added a second pump to the pit to keep up with the diluge of water.

Our question is, why no activity in the sump pump/drain tile. Then this overflowing effect, then the pump and DT start working. It's like a damn breaks and then it starts to work. Any ideas - no one has any ideas for us.

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Old 11-27-2010, 10:32 AM   #2
Picky Plumber
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 138

Basement Flooding mystery

Sounds like you need a foundation specialist.

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Old 11-27-2010, 12:12 PM   #3
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Nashua, NH, USA
Posts: 6,946

Basement Flooding mystery

The perimeter drain pipes may be sloped the wrong way. Often this can be solved by digging another sump pump pit at the other side of the basement.

Alternatively there may be a blockage in the perimeter drain pipe.
Stop wasting time re-adjusting the pattern. Have several lawn sprinklers, one for each pattern.
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Old 11-27-2010, 12:30 PM   #4
Join Date: Nov 2010
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Basement Flooding mystery

We had thought about putting in another sump in another part of the basement. The part that seems weird is that there is no water flowing and then suddenly, a ton of water (both through the walls - again unsure where because walls are finished) and then a solid stream of water from the pipe going into the sump pump pit. Therefore, it doesn't seem to be a sump pump placement issue because of the above-mentioned scenario. Also, if the pitch is wrong, wouldn't we see some water? It's baffling because there is no water and then in a split second, tons of water.
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