Sump Pump?

jibbaMarch 6, 2006

Here is the problem:

I have a 1920 brick colonial in DC and once or twice a year I get significant water in my basement after serious rain storms. I have located where the water enters, and it's on a "shared" wall that I have with my neighbor. I can't figure out what to do about this problem, as I suspect that somehow water is getting between the walls of our houses and is flowing into my basement through cracks at the base of the wall.

The basement is finished, so this problem has cost a lot of $$ in terms of lost flooring, but I can't do a French drain since I'm on elevated land with retaining walls, fence, etc. No way to get a backhoe in and it sounds like a nightmare anyway.

I was thinking of a sump pump, but not sure how to install, where to place it, etc. Another very low tech idea was to create a floor "barrier" around the water entry points with some wood and liquid nails in an attempt to contain the water that does flow in. Then I could use a wet/dry vac to get rid of it before it flows into the finished areas of the basement.

Any other ideas out there?



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Just my opinion and Im no expert but I think you need to cut a trench in the floor and lay slotted black pipe along that wall and into a sump basin, then pump it outside.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2006 at 8:05PM
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I would first try to determine where the water is coming from. If you are on an elevated lot, I wouldnt think that ground water would be a big issue. Make sure that your gutters are diverting the water well away from the house, that your yard is sloping away from the house, etc. Does your neighbor have the same problem?

If none of those measures work, you need to cut into the concrete to install the sump pump - and probbaly to install drain tile to collect the water and direct it to the pump. Big job!

    Bookmark   March 6, 2006 at 10:25PM
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I have totally reconfigured my gutters so that all water that comes off the house flows off the yard and onto the sidewalk. I think the neighbor might have "runoff" issues which lead to the problem that I described above.

I really don't want a BIG JOB. I have had too many BIG JOBs with this house and have no time, energy or $$ for another.

If I HAVE to I will but I'm going to hope that the gutter downspout reconfiguration will help some.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2006 at 2:19PM
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Before tearing out and installing drain tiles or pipe, try just installing a sump pit and pump.
In many cases the water will flow to the pit in the gravel bed under the slab just fine.
It is not a huge job, but will run $2000-$4000 if you hire it out.

If the water does not flow to the pit you can then go back and install the drain tile/weep pipe. There is no real reason to do it all at once, especially if the problem is very intermittent.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2006 at 7:56PM
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