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Old 02-27-2010, 08:37 AM  
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Default watertables and flooding basement Pipes bring water in!

Hi all,
Newbie here. We've own a 1934 year old house for the past 2 years and have an unusual problem. After a particularly wet few weeks last June I found our entire basement full of 8 inches of water! Needless to say, I was overwhelmed...we spent the next 18 hours pumping out, fan drying, dehumidifiers and bleaching the walls and floors (including ripping out rugs...part of the basement has wood floors with a vent below...hmm, that should have been telling!) Our plumber was a life saver and found one pipe in the furnace room which was uncapped and bubbling up like a water fountain...lots of damage to new furnace, air cleaner and air handler ( they put insulation in those things so that they are quieter! In 2 weeks time, that insulation had grown good mold!) A few days ago CT had gotten more days of rain than snow. I went down to check my basement at 3 pm and never came back upstairs til 2am since it flooded again. This time I had the chance to observe how the water was coming in...guess what, we had another uncapped pipe bubbling up full force flooding the opposite end of the basement(tool room) as well as the capped pipe in the furnace room oozing water out. CRAZY. Why would there be two pipes bringing fresh water into the house???? There isn't water coming from walls, outside gutters clear, Question: anybody have any info on why and what purpose these pipes could have served? The previous owner hid these exposed pipes openings under wood flooring...I can understand getting flooding simply from water tables and saturated ground but if you could see these floor pipes bubbling up for 12 hrs full force, you too would be perplexed. A drain sewer guy said that old houses had footings around perimeter of houses but why would the pipe bring water in? Makes no sense...needless to say we are having 2 sump pumps put in but I am concerned that there is something else going on...pipes are supposed to take water out not bring in clean cold water...the only reason it stopped was that rain turned into snow at 2 am. Thanks for any thoughts...

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Old 02-27-2010, 09:33 AM  
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I will simply say that wherever those floor drains drain to is either plugged up or, under water. That is the only thing I can say for sure.

You probably have the floor drains, footing drains, and gutter drains tied together discharging someplace.
pulling the gutter drains out and directing the discharge away from your home may offer some relief.

In most cases would be hesitant to snake these lines depending on the age of your home.
using a sewer inspection camera and locator to determine how the lines tie together and where they run may be your best option for determining a course of action. I always want to know where I'm snaking to. Putting 100' of cable into a dry well 20' off the foundation is a bad day for a drain cleaner. Frequently I find these lines to be substandard where a snake would cause irreparable damage to the line. materials used on these lines range for Orangeberg pipe, lower grades of PVC, to black corrugated poly pipe and others. But with your 1934 construction I would guess you have either Vitrified Clay or, cast iron which can easily be snaked, so the real question is where does it go to. Storm Sewer? Dry well? Open discharge?

If you PM me your home's address I may have knowledge of your area and be able to offer further insight as to what you may have.
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