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booie32 04-08-2009 10:10 AM

Stone Foundation Water Problems
I am considering purchasing an older home. It has a stone foundation that has recently been parged. During my last trip to the home, I noticed some standing water on the floor (not close to the walls at all) and some discoloration on one of the walls.
I received a quote from a waterproofing company that would put in an interior french drain with holes into the walls to help release trapped water. I am wondering A) how important is it to drill into the walls (will not doing that hurt the integrity of the foundation in the longrun) and B) if I can remove all standing water by improving grading and gutter spouts (both are pretty bad now), should I still consider the system that allows water to be released from the walls?

An exterior drain system would be prohibitively expensive and I worry that it would cause more problems (when removing the soil support for the foundation to install the system) than it would fix.

Any help would be really appreciated! I love this house and want to make sure that I am doing the right thing.

glennjanie 04-08-2009 01:23 PM

Welcome Booie:
The recent parging is a flag saying there was a problem with the wall before. The French drain inside is a good remedy along with a sump pump to rid the basement of accumulated water. They will not dig under the wall, just next to it and the weep holes are needed for pressure relief.
I suspect your part of the country is just like mine; where all basements have some water problems. Yes, the grading and gutters could help a lot but it still needs the drain and sump pump unless you are on a hill and can get natural drainage.

booie32 04-08-2009 01:32 PM


Thank you for your quick reply!

The recent parging had me a little worried too. However, the entire home was recently rehabbed (previous owners only took so-so care of it). Since they replaced all the plumbing/wiring/equipment in the basement, they said that they wanted to have it match the rest of the house.

We are actually at the top of a hill. The steepest part of the hill drops off about 35 yards behind the edge of the property at a high grade and at the bottom is a small stream. I am hoping that with some outdoor modifications, I can reroute most of the water in that direction.

I guess my major question is how important is it to drain the water that could be within the walls? If I decrease the amount of water that is draining near the foundation, will the water within the walls decrease on its own?

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