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Old 09-27-2011, 05:55 PM  
V6Pony
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Default Need some help with a wet Basement Decision

Ok here's the thing. I'm out of my league on this one.

We have a partial basement. The wall that butts up against the crawl space is leaking. We have owned the house about 30 years. In that time it has leaked about 6 or 7 times. It has only leaked durning times of heavy rain for long periods.

We want to get this fixed as the basement is finished. We plan to remodel it as well this winter. We called a company to look at it. There plan was to install drain pipe and a sump pump in the crawl space. Also they want to install drain pipe around the inside walls in the basement and have a sump pump located on the inside of the basement as well. The price to do this is $11.000.00. This includes placing plastic sheeting in the craw space floor and they say there is some mold under the house they will clean up. They will guarantee no leaks for 5 years.

There is so much I don't understand or know about this. As in will this fix the problem? Do I need sump pump both inside and out side? Will one or the other fix the problem? Is this a fair price? As far as the Guarantee goes it is a small business. If the business goes under the Guarantee is gone as I see it.

So could someone offer me some direction as to the best decision on this?

Thanks



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Old 09-27-2011, 06:26 PM  
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Call 2 more contractors and get estimates and a complete scope of work.

...oh and to House Repair Talk



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Old 09-27-2011, 06:38 PM  
V6Pony
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Thanks for the welcome. I have called another one he is coming next week.

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Old 09-27-2011, 10:17 PM  
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Placing foundation drains and sumps both in the crawl and basement would be most likely to prevent future leakage problems, IF DONE CORRECTLY. On the other hand, if whoever does the work skimps and cuts corners, you could be wasting your money.

And $11,000 does sound a bit steep. Have you considered doing the work yourself? It's not rocket science, but involves a lot of muscle work digging dirt and tearing out concrete. You could rent a portable Target saw for making the concrete cuts, and an electric 90-lb. hammer for breaking up the concrete. Another advantage of doing it yourself is that you could do the crawl space first, and then wait to see if that solves the leakage problem. Probably could do it for less than $1000, including sump pit, pump, wiring, piping, backfill, etc.

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Old 09-28-2011, 05:54 AM  
V6Pony
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Placing foundation drains and sumps both in the crawl and basement would be most likely to prevent future leakage problems, IF DONE CORRECTLY. On the other hand, if whoever does the work skimps and cuts corners, you could be wasting your money.

And $11,000 does sound a bit steep. Have you considered doing the work yourself? It's not rocket science, but involves a lot of muscle work digging dirt and tearing out concrete. You could rent a portable Target saw for making the concrete cuts, and an electric 90-lb. hammer for breaking up the concrete. Another advantage of doing it yourself is that you could do the crawl space first, and then wait to see if that solves the leakage problem. Probably could do it for less than $1000, including sump pit, pump, wiring, piping, backfill, etc.
Yes I would consider doing it my self. Especial in the crawl space. Just don't have the knowledge to figure out how. I have been reading about a sump in the crawl space. It needs to be 22" deep. Has a liner that that protects the pump. Outside the liner is a layer of rock to allow the water to seep into the pump. A PVC pipe is run from the pump out side of the house to drain away from the house. On a down slop carrying the water away from the house.

Is that all that needs to be done? If I do this will the pump get ride of the ground water pressure pushing against that wall? I also need to cover the crawl space floor with plastic. Can it be this easy?

Thanks
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Old 09-28-2011, 11:14 AM  
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Yes I would consider doing it my self. Especial in the crawl space. Just don't have the knowledge to figure out how. I have been reading about a sump in the crawl space. It needs to be 22" deep. Has a liner that that protects the pump. Outside the liner is a layer of rock to allow the water to seep into the pump. A PVC pipe is run from the pump out side of the house to drain away from the house. On a down slop carrying the water away from the house.

Is that all that needs to be done? If I do this will the pump get ride of the ground water pressure pushing against that wall? I also need to cover the crawl space floor with plastic. Can it be this easy?

Thanks
I am not an expert and have never done a drain tile project like this but I don’t think it should be too hard to figure out. If you talk to your local city building inspector they could probably provide a lot of the information you would need. Also check the city website for info sheets on what the inspectors are looking for when they do new home inspections. Basic internet search will teach you a lot too. I recently replaced an old service panel with screw in fuses for under $200, and probably save my self $2000. The local electrical inspector answered a ton of questions for me.
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Old 09-30-2011, 11:16 PM  
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Originally Posted by V6Pony View Post
Yes I would consider doing it my self. Especial in the crawl space. Just don't have the knowledge to figure out how. I have been reading about a sump in the crawl space. It needs to be 22" deep. Has a liner that that protects the pump. Outside the liner is a layer of rock to allow the water to seep into the pump. A PVC pipe is run from the pump out side of the house to drain away from the house. On a down slop carrying the water away from the house.

Is that all that needs to be done? If I do this will the pump get ride of the ground water pressure pushing against that wall? I also need to cover the crawl space floor with plastic. Can it be this easy?

Thanks
Actually, it's quite easy. I've put in several, and other than sweating like a pig from all of the shoveling, it's not a big deal. Prefer doing it in basements as opposed to crawl spaces, as post hole diggers don't work well (for digging the sump pit) when the headroom is limited.

Don't know where you came up with your 22" sump depth figure, but if it's at or below the bottoms of the footings, you will be OK. Oh, and don't forget to install a check valve in the PVC drain line, just above the sump pit. It will keep the sump from filling back up with water in the line that you've just paid the electric company to pump out--gravity likes to do that.
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Old 10-02-2011, 05:48 AM  
V6Pony
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Actually, it's quite easy. I've put in several, and other than sweating like a pig from all of the shoveling, it's not a big deal. Prefer doing it in basements as opposed to crawl spaces, as post hole diggers don't work well (for digging the sump pit) when the headroom is limited.

Don't know where you came up with your 22" sump depth figure, but if it's at or below the bottoms of the footings, you will be OK. Oh, and don't forget to install a check valve in the PVC drain line, just above the sump pit. It will keep the sump from filling back up with water in the line that you've just paid the electric company to pump out--gravity likes to do that.
Hey BridgeMan thanks for you reply. The depth figure is what I'm struggling with. I just read the 22" figure somewhere. My house is a Tri Level. The basement is a partial basement only half underground. In the crawl space I'm not sure how far it is down to the footing. I'm guessing 2 to 4 ft. Can you put in a sump pump that deep? Do you need to go that deep to reduce the water table pressure against that wall?
You would need a lining to set the pump in that would be that long. Can you buy linings this long or what can be used? My crawl space is not too bad it is not real high but I think you can dig with a short shovel. Still going to be hard work.
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Old 10-02-2011, 08:40 PM  
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I'd highly suggest getting as many estimates as possible for a project like this. I'll be moving to Boston and have an old house to remodel. *Sigh*

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Old 10-02-2011, 10:54 PM  
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V6,

To a practical maximum, the deeper the better for the sump to effectively do its thing. You're trying to intercept and remove the groundwater before it has a chance to permeate the soil in your crawl space, and leak into the basement.

The last sump pit/liner I installed a few years ago in a basement was close to 3' deep. For the liner (I'm a tight-wad), I used a heavy-gauge, galvanized steel garbage can, with a lot of holes (think I used 3/8" dia.) drilled in it, and then spray-painted the holes with zinc-rich paint to keep the whole thing from rusting away. Back-filled the outside of the liner with washed rock, put a few inches of rock in the bottom of the can, and set the submersible pump on a solid concrete block flush with the rock. Worked like a charm. It was located under a stairwell, not readily visible or accessible to anyone not needing to be there. Otherwise I would have poured concrete over the backfill rock to match the floor, and put a lid on the liner (with a hole for the outfall pipe).



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