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Old 04-15-2013, 01:46 PM   #1
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Water in Basemen....Sump Pump or French Drains?


Hi Guys. I have a small ranch over an unfinished basement. I've been here 7 years and the basement has always leaked some water near the wall/floor joint. It's gotten alot worse this spring and I think its time to start on it. Im deep in the woods and there are natural springs all around me. I'm sure I have one running under my basement foundation. I am on a well so I know its not a broken water line. The original owner hid this fact. I have 5 floor drains in the basement. All of them T together and exit out of the same pipe that goes under the stairs (celler to yard) When it rains the drain under the stairs has water flowing through it. I can pull the lid and see water. I believe when adding the basement (under the newer addition) he hit water and put some kind of PVC pipe under the slab and ran it into the floor drain main exit. All of the hairline cracks in the floor sweat water as well as the wall/floor joints leak alot. Since I am assuming that I cannot get rid of the spring, whats the best way around it. Inside sump or outside french drain...mabey both? I have put a band aid on several morter joints with hydraulic cement but the water still has to go somewhere and always finds another weak area. Forgot to mention that its a half basement/ half crawlspace. The wall where the basement meets the crawlspace leaks quite a but of water at the base. Cant dig outside that wall. Any suggestions? Thanks.


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Old 04-15-2013, 02:58 PM   #2
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Water in Basemen....Sump Pump or French Drains?


Interior perforated pvc drain tile at the level of the bottom of the footing leading to an interior sump and a pump will reduce the pressure and water under the slab and the hydrostatic pressure on the walls that can lead to leakage.

It will run a lot immediately after installation until the water level is drawn down, but will decrease after that except for after the rain, but there is a lag between soil water levels coming up depending on the type of soil.

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Old 04-15-2013, 03:50 PM   #3
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Water in Basemen....Sump Pump or French Drains?


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Originally Posted by wrea398 View Post
Hi Guys. I have a small ranch over an unfinished basement. I've been here 7 years and the basement has always leaked some water near the wall/floor joint.

I have 5 floor drains in the basement. All of them T together and exit out of the same pipe that goes under the stairs (cellar to yard)

whats the best way around it. Inside sump or outside french drain...
Cant dig outside that wall. Any suggestions? Thanks.
Like Arhnold says: Pump it up
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Old 04-15-2013, 04:19 PM   #4
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Water in Basemen....Sump Pump or French Drains?


They are not mutually exclusive.
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Old 04-15-2013, 08:30 PM   #5
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Water in Basemen....Sump Pump or French Drains?


Usually you need both.

You can have a French drain with no sump pump if you can tap onto the French drain pipe with an additional length of pipe going downhill somewhere well away from the house that will never fill up and back up.

You can have a sump pump with no French drain if there is a thick layer of coarse (3/8 inch or larger size) gravel under the basement slab.
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Old 04-15-2013, 08:52 PM   #6
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Water in Basemen....Sump Pump or French Drains?


Thanks guys.

AllanJ.....Drain without sump pump?

I though it might be possible to dig the ditch around the inside perimeter of the basement, lay the perforated pipes and slope them to the already existing floor drain exit pipe under the stairs (cellar to yard). That pipe already slopes out into the yard about 60 feet away from the house. Would this be safe without a sump pump being installed?

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Old 04-15-2013, 11:05 PM   #7
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Water in Basemen....Sump Pump or French Drains?


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Originally Posted by wrea398 View Post
Thanks guys.

AllanJ.....Drain without sump pump?

I though it might be possible to dig the ditch around the inside perimeter of the basement, lay the perforated pipes and slope them to the already existing floor drain exit pipe under the stairs (cellar to yard). That pipe already slopes out into the yard about 60 feet away from the house. Would this be safe without a sump pump being installed?
I think that would depend on where you can tap into the drain. Your french drains should slope 1/4" per foot so if you can achieve that with them buried at the right depth and still tie into the drain you're referencing then it should work.
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Old 04-16-2013, 06:14 AM   #8
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Water in Basemen....Sump Pump or French Drains?


A "french drain" does not have slope. It is there to collect water and water will find its own level to drain. If it slopes 1/4" per foot a run on just 2 walls of a 20x30 means it would drop about a foot in its length and would make the sump very deep.

Without a sump pump, the pvc to carry the water away should be unperforated pvc and should slope to drain.

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Old 04-16-2013, 07:44 AM   #9
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Water in Basemen....Sump Pump or French Drains?


In most cases you won't be able to achieve a full 1/4 inch per foot slope within your periimeter drain (French drain) proper, unless you had another sump pump pit every fifteen feet or so. When digging trenches, you must maintain a 1:3 slope of undisturbed dirt going away, inward or outward, from the bottoms of your foundation footings. And of course the drain pipes, whether inside or outside, have to be below the level of the basement slab bottom.

But a full 1/4 inch per foot slope in the perimeter drain is not absolutely needed.
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Originally Posted by wrea398 View Post
I though it might be possible to dig the ditch around the inside perimeter of the basement, lay the perforated pipes and slope them to the already existing floor drain exit pipe under the stairs (cellar to yard). That pipe already slopes out into the yard about 60 feet away from the house. Would this be safe without a sump pump being installed?
This is safe if little or no water escapes from the exit pipe through perforations near the house and the exit pipe goes where it can never fill up and back up.

Note: A "French drain" with no means of carrying away the water is more properly called a leach field even though it may be constructed in the same manner as a French drain and no waste water is poured into it.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:33 PM   #10
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Water in Basemen....Sump Pump or French Drains?


My basement has no french or perimeter drains. Only floor drains. There are five separate drains that all tee together and exit thru the same exit pipe under the stairs that lead outside. If i dig inside for perimeter drainage, i would hit the pipe that exits the house. My idea was to dig as if i was installing pipe to a sump pump, the normal way with perf pipe below the footer. Since i have several floor drains near the wall edges, i thought i might be able to plumb sections of perf pipe along the walls, but instead of going to a sump pit, i would connect the perf pipe into the closest floor drain on any given wall. All of the drains flow nicely to the outside. Wondered if this sounds feasable. Just wanted to make sure we were on the same page.




Quote:
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In most cases you won't be able to achieve a full 1/4 inch per foot slope within your periimeter drain (French drain) proper, unless you had another sump pump pit every fifteen feet or so. When digging trenches, you must maintain a 1:3 slope of undisturbed dirt going away, inward or outward, from the bottoms of your foundation footings. And of course the drain pipes, whether inside or outside, have to be below the level of the basement slab bottom.

But a full 1/4 inch per foot slope in the perimeter drain is not absolutely needed.

This is safe if little or no water escapes from the exit pipe through perforations near the house and the exit pipe goes where it can never fill up and back up.

Note: A "French drain" with no means of carrying away the water is more properly called a leach field even though it may be constructed in the same manner as a French drain and no waste water is poured into it.

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