After sitting under tropical storm Ida for the last several days, a "minor" water issue in the basement has turned into a major pain.
First, water is coming through the mortar joint in my brick foundation. I assume it has been happening for years, because there is a substantial amount crumbled/deteriorated mortar. Once I fix the drainage problem from outside, I am going to need to repoint the area. The house was built in 1912, so it is in the transition era in terms of mortar mixes. From what I have read, I am supposed to error on the side of "soft" mortar and use a mix that is just lime and sand. All of the mortar mixes at Home Depot are cement based, so I guess I will need to make my own. Any pointers? Do you just use quicklime (like for the lawn?) and builders sand?
Also, upon inspection, it looks like the home has a drainage system of sorts. The land slopes down as you go towards the back of the house. There are large (maybe 10 inch) clay pipes running parallel to the foundation. They are buried maybe 6" deep and look like they were designed to pick up water from the downspout at the front of the house and funnel it down the hill, past the foundation. It isn't functional right now and I assume they are filled with junk. Does anyone know if these were likely an original feature of the house (worth restoring and preserving)? It will be a TON of work to dig up junk filled clay pipes without damaging them, so I would hate to do it and find out that they were later additions.