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Old 05-13-2019, 10:53 AM   #1
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Issues with burried downspout, waterproof membrane


This winter, I had some minor water intrusion in one corner of the vasement (slightly corner where drywall meets the floor).

Now that the weather is warmer, i've inspected the area (picture attached) and the 90 degree elbow is located almost at level with the top of the membrane. Could water be accumulating behind against the foundation wall? I should mentioned that when the leak occured, we had experienced a free/thaw cycle where the underground pipe was likely still frozen and all the melt water from the roof was spilling out of the sides, flooding that area shown in the picture. I've since disconnected the downspout and will do so each winter. But, should i still address the area by either sealing or extending the membrane?
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Old 05-13-2019, 11:18 AM   #2
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Re: Issues with burried downspout, waterproof membrane


If I am seeing that correctly, the membrane has a gap between it and the foundation wall.

That is inviting water to trickle down the wall and seep through.

ED
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Old 05-13-2019, 11:29 AM   #3
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Re: Issues with burried downspout, waterproof membrane


I'm not sure there is any good way to seal the membrane to the foundation at this point.

I am not a fan of underground drainage.. it plugs up, it freezes, it is just problematic. And then when it does plug it overflows the elbow and it runs down between the membrane and the foundation.

Run an above ground downspout extension away from the home. We had to run our downspout "overhead" to prevent the water from pooling and freezing against our attached garage.
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Old 05-13-2019, 12:50 PM   #4
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Re: Issues with burried downspout, waterproof membrane


Thanks for the replies. I agree that underground draining, especially in a northern climate, is not the best way to do things. However, I took possession of this home and the previous owners had this done part of their exterior landscaping. Running all downspout extensions above grade in the summer would not be ideal, both for esthetic and trip hasard reasons.

I will disconnect each fall for sure. In terms of the waterproof membrane: is the practice to caulk/seal the top to the foundation?
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Old 05-13-2019, 02:59 PM   #5
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Re: Issues with burried downspout, waterproof membrane


I think I spy perforated pipe as well, that could splash water out during heavy rains anytime of year.

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We had to run our downspout "overhead" to prevent the water from pooling and freezing against our attached garage.
That's a nice little bridge for all the varmint to access your roof.
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Old 05-13-2019, 08:40 PM   #6
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Re: Issues with burried downspout, waterproof membrane


^^
Perforated pipe is designed to pass water, so if the water is already in the pipe, it will likely run out. Water runs down the inside surface of pipe (somebody's principle of hydrodynamics, or surface tension, or something). Also, those connectors are not designed to be watertight.
If water is freezing in your run-outs, there either isn't enough slope, it's full of debris or it's backing up at its outlet. I am in a freezing climate and my run-outs are non-perforated flex pipe. I've not had an issue but if I ever re-do them they will be rigid poly pipe because of their thicker walls and smoother surface.
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Old 05-14-2019, 01:04 AM   #7
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Re: Issues with burried downspout, waterproof membrane


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That's a nice little bridge for all the varmint to access your roof.
Good point. I'll have to make a baffle and install it. Thanks.
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Old 05-14-2019, 01:13 AM   #8
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Re: Issues with burried downspout, waterproof membrane


If the pipe had a slope it should have no water in it to freeze. It should have been lower and solid pipe.
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Old 05-14-2019, 08:32 AM   #9
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Quote:
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If the pipe had a slope it should have no water in it to freeze. It should have been lower and solid pipe.
Agreed. But given that this is the current situation, any suggestions how whether anything should be done to address? Can I add a piece on membrane to extend higher, seal the top, etc?
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Old 05-14-2019, 08:47 AM   #10
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Re: Issues with burried downspout, waterproof membrane


Just a homeowner guess but I suppose any exterior fibrous tar-based brush-on material or perhaps a roofing caulk would work to fill the gap. It might need yearly monitoring. I would sculpt it into a slope that helps to shed the water.
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Old 05-14-2019, 08:49 AM   #11
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Re: Issues with burried downspout, waterproof membrane


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Agreed. But given that this is the current situation, any suggestions how whether anything should be done to address? Can I add a piece on membrane to extend higher, seal the top, etc?
The pipe running down to the 90 looks like it has holes so when water goes down there it likely pisses out all over the foundation above the membrane, start with the easy stuff. The ground level with in feet all needs to below the level of the membrane. Or go buy some more dimple board and raise it up.


But that membrane never seals at the top the damp proofing should look after that, dimple board is there to give water a free path to get to the perimeter drain at the footing.
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Old 05-14-2019, 09:29 AM   #12
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Re: Issues with burried downspout, waterproof membrane


I'm with Neal—the downspout actually looks like it's perforated. Can you unplug from the elbow and replace with non-perforated? At least the bottom few feet or so?
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