Keep Basement Dry When it Rains
LESLIE: On our way to New Jersey now where Lou listens to The Money Pit on WCTC. And you’ve got water in the basement. There’s been a ton of rain lately. Tell us what you’re going through.
LOU: OK. We had – we had a house inspection on a house that my son bought. The house was approximately built in the 1930s. And the house inspection was good. A week later, we went back for a subsequent inspection to fix up the minor that they were supposed to fix – the minor details – and we found that there was water in the middle of the floor and we noticed and we noticed some hairline cracks in the floor.
LOU: And a week after that, the realtor went down there and found like snake-like water coming in other areas of the floor. And the home does have a sump pump and it seemed that the water level of the sump pump was low enough that you wouldn’t think water would be seeping up through the floor.
TOM: Well, that water that’s seeping up through the floor may not necessarily be caused by a rising water table that’s going to kind of come up even with the sump pump. It doesn’t work that way, Lou. I suspect that what’s happening is that there’s a drainage problem around the foundation perimeter of this house; that the gutter system is dumping water too close to the foundation or that the soil is not sloped away and all that water, as it collects around the outside wall …
TOM: … can actually push down under that foundation wall and come up through that floor. I’ve seen drainage problems on the outside of foundations show up as geysers in the middle of the basement floor.
LESLIE: Oh, yeah. And if there’s been a tremendous amount of rainfall – which we know the northeast has seen all summer – you know, that ground could just be so heavily saturated with water and then your gutter systems backing up and over could just be causing this water to find its way in.
TOM: Lou, let me recommend that you go to our website at MoneyPit.com and search on Don’t Get Soaked by Wet Basements. That’s a column we wrote that takes you step by step through everything that you need to do to resolve a water problem in your basement and I’m certain that’s going to leave you high and dry when you’re done.
Lou, thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT.