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3 Ways To Help Correct Your Leaking Home Foundation

Construction & Contractors Articles

If you are dealing with a leaking foundation and a wet basement, you need to correct the problem as soon as possible to avoid mold and mildew growth in your home. Here are three options to help you correct your home's foundation leaks.

Install Exterior Drain Tile

To repair a leaking basement foundation, you can install an external drain pipe buried around your home's foundation. There are several benefits to installing an exterior drain. For example, you won't have to do any work inside your home and the external drain will help relieve any lateral water pressure pushing against the outside of your home's foundation. Also, excavating around your home will expose the foundation. This will give you an opportunity to have a waterproofing membrane applied to the outside of the foundation for further waterproof protection.

To install an exterior drain tile, you will need to dig a 12-inch wide trench around your home's foundation down to its base. The bottom of the trench needs to have a slope of at least 1/2-inch for every four feet of length. Use a level to verify this slope. Without the right slope, the moisture around the foundation won't drain away and can come into your basement. Fill the trench with three inches of gravel, set the drain pipe on top of the gravel, then cover it with additional gravel.

You can feed the drain pipe into a dry well buried in your yard, away from your home. The dry well will collect water from the runoff and allow it to slowly seep into the surrounding soil.

Install Interior Drain Tile

A second option to correct a leaking basement is to install an interior drain tile around the perimeter of the basement walls. This option can be easier than installing an exterior drain tile because you won't have to excavate soil around your home and disturb your landscaping or any paving. Then, interior drain tile won't be at risk of becoming damaged by tree roots or clogged with eroding soil.

To install the drain tile you will need to remove an 18-inch wide section of concrete from the perimeter of your basement floor. A jackhammer can make this part of the work easier. Then, you will need to dig out a 12-inch wide and eight-inch deep trench. Cover the bottom with two inches of gravel, place the pipe, and cover the pipe with more gravel. Then, connect the pipe to an electrical-powered sump pump, which will pump the water out and away from your home.

Last, cover the gravel with a length of polyurethane sheeting and pour new cement over the opening to fill in the last three to four-inch gap remaining in your basement floor.

Regrade Your Yard's Soil

The third option to correct your home's leaking basement is to regrade your yard. As this option requires you to move soil and build it up around your home's foundation, it will most likely disturb your landscaping. But if your yard has no landscaping, or you have been wanting to redo your landscaping, this option is a good one. 

If the soil around your home slopes into your home's foundation, this will allow water to collect around it and seep into your home and basement. Often, when homes are built, the construction crew will backfill soil around a foundation without compacting it. Then, over the next several years the soil compacts on its own, causing the soil to slope down toward your home's foundation. 

To correct this, it is best to rent a backhoe or other land moving equipment to move soil around your yard. Your goal is to make your yard soil slope gradually away from your home. This will allow water to drain from your home, through your yard, and to city street gutters or other drains. Model building codes require the soil around a new home to decline in six inches of height within the first ten feet of distance away from the home. This is a good rule to use when grading your yard. Then, if neighbor's home is too close to your home to allow for this decline, you should install a drainage channel for water to run away from your home's foundation.

You can use any of three options to correct your home's leaking foundation. For more information or to call in a professional, check out a company like Rite-Way Waterproofing.


11 December 2015