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Old 03-03-2012, 01:12 PM   #1
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Basement leaking -- please help!


Hi, I'm a newbie to DIY,

I own a 7 year old home, and recently I started noticing water coming into the basement through a crack between the foundation wall and the floor (there is a linear horizontal crack on the joint between the wall and floor). I patched it up quickly with hydraulic cement, and I'm about to paint it after drying with some drylok waterproofing latex paint to prevent further leakage.

However, there is a big pipe that comes out of the ground and is connected to the water supply in the home (I am assuming this is the water main?) that sits right around where the leak was. After cementing the crack and containing the damage, I noticed that there is constant moisture and saturation around the pipe (as shown in this picture), so much so that the ground there is always moist.

I'm really confused how to fix this. If this is a leak coming from the water main, then how come the flooding happens only when there is torrential rain outside (my sump pump is working). Also, would it work if I use Drylok around this area to contain the moisture or would this entail a hefty repair where I would have to hire someone to crack the basement floor and take a look at if/where the watermain is leaking?

I would appreciate any help/guidance someone can provide.
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Old 03-03-2012, 01:26 PM   #2
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Basement leaking -- please help!


If you cannot find water on the brass fitting that transitions the poly pipe to copper then your water problem comes from ground water that is seeping through the slab. Investigate your footing drains.

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Old 03-03-2012, 05:50 PM   #3
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No, there is no water on the brass or PVC pipe. The water is all moisture around where the pipe sits.

I had a contractor come by who thought this was a cracked water-main, that required digging outside and re-routing the water main through the basement wall, rather than through the ground (it's a buried basement so currently the water main comes from underneath the foundation). I got quoted around $3000. He's trust-worthy, but I thought I'd ask to see what you guys think about this job and the quote.
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Old 03-03-2012, 05:57 PM   #4
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Basement leaking -- please help!


If your water meter is outside, turn off the yellow handle ball valve in the picture an see if the meter turns. If it does, you have a leak in the main
Curious--Whats in the green pipe?
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Old 03-04-2012, 06:38 AM   #5
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If it only happens during heavy rains Id look at drainage outside of house from gutters and grading around house.
Water service would be a continuous leak,not dependent on weather conditions
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Old 03-04-2012, 07:29 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by rwickra View Post
I had a contractor come by who (told me that they) thought this was a cracked water-main, that required digging outside and re-routing the water main through the basement wall, rather than through the ground
That digging outside stuff, which should allow a full exterior parging and install/repair of foundation drain tiles and sure, while down there relocate the water entrance might even be useful.

And when all that is done... the positive grading away from the house and extending the downspouts that actually solve the problem won't even be noticed.

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I got quoted around $3000. He's trust-worthy, but I thought I'd ask to see what you guys think about this job and the quote.
You asked. What are you hearing?
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Old 03-04-2012, 08:06 AM   #7
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Basement leaking -- please help!


The first thing I would do is, make sure downspouts are extended away from the house, the grading around the house is sloped away from the foundation, any basement window wells are covered, and make sure all water from ran is directed away from the foundation.

I would do that and wait a couple months to see what happens if it drys up good if it don't go to Plane B, plumbing investigation.
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Old 03-04-2012, 09:06 AM   #8
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Basement leaking -- please help!


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The first thing I would do is, make sure downspouts are extended away from the house, the grading around the house is sloped away from the foundation, any basement window wells are covered, and make sure all water from ran is directed away from the foundation.

I would do that and wait a couple months to see what happens if it drys up good if it don't go to Plane B, plumbing investigation.
I would also add,don't paint anything with Drylok for now.
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Old 03-04-2012, 04:25 PM   #9
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Basement leaking -- please help!


Thanks for all the replies.

I did EXACTLY what you suggested. I turned off the water shut off valve in the house and recorded the water meter outside and gave it 24 hrs to see whether the meter is still running.

I do have a sneaky suspicion that this is not a cracked water main but rather a grading/ground water problem. My gutters have not been cleaned in years, and during a rainstorm I do see water overflowing from the gutters directly on to the ground. I am having someone clean the gutters and downspouts and install gutter guards to prevent this from happening.

I'll also re-grade the outside ground (the grade seems to be OK for now and it is draining away from the house). Downspouts will also be taken a bit further.

But do you seriously feel that it isn't wise to put some Drylok on to seal? I filled in the cracks in the foundation with drylok crack-fill and hydraulic cement using a caulk gun and cemented that area out so that I don't continue to have a water leak problem into the basement. I wanted to drylok only to ensure that it never happens again.

Again, thanks a lot for all your help! You guys are amazing!
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Old 03-04-2012, 04:25 PM   #10
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Basement leaking -- please help!


Actually, I have NO IDEA what that green pipe sticking out of the ground is.
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Old 03-04-2012, 05:45 PM   #11
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I wouldn't paint anything until you find out what the problem is first,IMO Dry-Lok is a band-aid.
I had to use a needle scaler to remove four layers of it in my house because the previous owner didn't fix the original problem (t is another story.s) but tha
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Old 03-04-2012, 09:23 PM   #12
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OK thanks! I won't do the dry Lok.

I shut off the main water inlet to the house for 24 hours, and let the valve at the water meter stay open (to see if there was a leak between the city's water meter -- which is about 30 feet away from my home, and the water inlet valve to the house) as suggested by some of you.

After 24 hrs, the water meter had not moved. So I think this is pretty diagnostic that the problem must be ground water and not water coming in from a broken water main.

So as I understand it, you suggest that I :

a) clean my gutters, perhaps install gutter-guards
b) get the downspouts to empty as far away from the basement as possible
c) get someone to regrade the ground near the basement wall to be as far away from the basement as possible?

Anything else that I should be doing?

Thanks so much for your help on this!
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Old 03-04-2012, 10:37 PM   #13
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Basement leaking -- please help!


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Actually, I have NO IDEA what that green pipe sticking out of the ground is.
It's either a drain or access to a shut off valve.
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Old 03-04-2012, 11:18 PM   #14
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Basement leaking -- please help!


Is there mulch piled up again the foundation or flower beds?
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Old 03-05-2012, 09:28 AM   #15
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Basement leaking -- please help!


Yes, yes! There is a lot of Mulch against the foundation wall. That's how the flower beds were set up. Could this be the reason?

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