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Old 05-06-2019, 07:27 PM   #1
krynski
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Default Water in the hole!

I am hoping someone here knows a little about foundations/concrete and can help with some thoughts!

I bought a house at the end of February, and in the basement there was a spot where if you stood on the laminate, the laminate would flex about an inch to an inch and a half down. I ended up pulling back the laminate flooring at the end of March, and discovered what appears to be a cleanout. This did not seem alarming to me. What was alarming was the level of the water in it.

I had 3 professionals come in to look at it. The first was a foundation expert. He immediately hit the panic switch and told me I need another sump pump near the hole, and I need to cut out some of the concrete and trench in weeping tile to the new sump. The current sump pump is on the other side of the wall of this, probably about 15 feet away. The second professional was my house inspector, who told me a new sump pump might impact resellability and would be a red flag for water problems if he was to inspect this house, maybe try and core some weeping tile and connect to the current sump pump. The third professional was a contractor who basically told me that I could probably do all that, but this house was built in 2003 and it has settled all it is going to, and the water is not much of an issue.

I am planning to concrete most of the hole and make a smaller access to the cleanout, then use better material to cover it over (something that won't rot).

My concern is that the water level went down all of april to the point where there was almost no water in there, and since the snow/rain, it's gone back up to the level in the last picture. I don't think it's going to rise much more than it is at, but I guess in the event of a torrential downpour of biblical proportions, do I need to be concerned? Do I need to do something about this water?

Any help/advice would be really appreciated!


Pic 1: Oh dear, are there dead bodies under this? (Pics 1-5 taken March 29)


Pic2: No dead bodies yet....


Pic 3: Phew, just some plastic thingy. Wait, what is this water?


Pic 4: What is this? A lake for ants?


Pic 5: I should plant a tree here!


Pic 6: It's going to have to be a tree that tolerates lots of water. (Pic taken today)


My images didn't come through, see imgur link:
https://imgur.com/a/98kjsf0

Last edited by krynski; 05-06-2019 at 07:33 PM.
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Old 05-06-2019, 08:04 PM   #2
topfiverecords
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Is the water coming out of the cleanout cap or from under the slab?

I had a sewer blockage and there was water in around one of my below slab cleanouts and the plumber changed the cleanout cap to have a better seal.

You should also have that cleanout more accessible. Mine has the laminate on a circle plywood disk I can pop out.
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Old 05-06-2019, 08:14 PM   #3
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It’s coming in from under the slab, not the clean out. The area has a high water table, but my sump isn’t running a lot.

I was thinking about ways I could make it accessible, could you post a picture of your disc cover? That helps with ideas for sure!
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Old 05-06-2019, 08:38 PM   #4
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Surprised a sump 15ft away isn't already keeping the level down. Are you sure the sump and basin are installed correctly & deep enough? Does it get water in it at times like this? If the table is that high already, a properly installed basin should be getting at least somewhere near that level of water.
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Old 05-06-2019, 09:27 PM   #5
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I believe it was installed correctly. The house inspector suggested a deeper basin as a potential fix, but he also suggested getting other opinions.

There is a wall between this hole and the sump pump, and the contractor said that there is a footing beneath the wall, which would prevent flow of water from the hole and the area in that room to the sump pump. I would think the weeping tile around the foundation would catch it from below that level, but it’s not in this case.
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Old 05-06-2019, 10:02 PM   #6
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Ya, generally if you've got a deep enough basin the sump does a fine job of keeping the water table low enough. I'd be surprised if a footing blocked the water flow, since water tables are much more pervasive that that, but that said, it could either be too shallow of a sump, or potentially just a localized high water spot (often occurs on one side of house where you have, say, the high side of a house on a hill where the uphill water is running, hitting the house and running into the ground.)
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Old 05-06-2019, 11:17 PM   #7
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Why, in every picture do I see an extension cord running through it? are you trying to kill yourself?
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Old 05-07-2019, 08:14 AM   #8
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Absolutely, life insurance can pay my mortgage for me.
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Old 05-07-2019, 08:18 AM   #9
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You have long toes.
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Old 05-07-2019, 08:22 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ducay View Post
Ya, generally if you've got a deep enough basin the sump does a fine job of keeping the water table low enough. I'd be surprised if a footing blocked the water flow, since water tables are much more pervasive that that, but that said, it could either be too shallow of a sump, or potentially just a localized high water spot (often occurs on one side of house where you have, say, the high side of a house on a hill where the uphill water is running, hitting the house and running into the ground.)
It might be too shallow. The pipe that drains into the sump seems to be very close to the level of the water in the hole. I think if the sump basin was deeper, I could drill holes in the side and lower the water table.

Also, I may look at re-landscaping the outside of this area of the house.

This is good advice, thanks.
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Old 05-07-2019, 08:25 AM   #11
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Quote:
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You have long toes.
Thanks. I was trying to include them for scale, but if I have abnormally long toes, then that plan backfired.
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Old 05-07-2019, 08:37 AM   #12
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You also may be turning into a hobbit. To soon to tell.
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Old 05-07-2019, 09:36 AM   #13
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You also may be turning into a hobbit. To soon to tell.
I was really hoping I was only dealing with a water issue, that sounds serious.
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Old 05-07-2019, 09:55 AM   #14
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Quote:
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I was really hoping I was only dealing with a water issue, that sounds serious.
Maybe you'll get lucky and you'll be turning into a troll instead. Then it's just water under the bridge.
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Old 05-07-2019, 10:01 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krynski View Post
It’s coming in from under the slab, not the clean out. The area has a high water table, but my sump isn’t running a lot.

I was thinking about ways I could make it accessible, could you post a picture of your disc cover? That helps with ideas for sure!
I can later, but it's really just an 8" circle cut out of the lino/plywood that can be removed without rolling up the lino. It has a slight inward taper on the plywood so it doesn't fall through.

Luckily it's ugly lino, in an inconspicuous area, in an ugly bathroom so the circle in the lino doesn't bother me and doesn't get stepped on. Might not be preferred if it's in a high traffic location.
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Old 05-07-2019, 02:59 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krynski View Post
I was really hoping I was only dealing with a water issue, that sounds serious.
And Precious little you can do about it.
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Old 05-07-2019, 03:24 PM   #17
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I'd 100% be listening to the foundation guy, and certainly not the home inspector. I really don't agree with anything he said.

What is the perimeter of your house like? Do you have adequate downspouts and extensions to get rain away from your foundation? Do you have a yard the slopes towards your home?
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Old 05-07-2019, 03:32 PM   #18
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Oh man, we had this exact same set up at my house in Dalhousie. Walk down the stairs and that cut out was just to the left. Every once in a while it would flood (like every five years or so). Never did figure out how to fix it permanently.
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Old 05-08-2019, 09:14 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoinAllTheWay View Post
I'd 100% be listening to the foundation guy, and certainly not the home inspector. I really don't agree with anything he said.

What is the perimeter of your house like? Do you have adequate downspouts and extensions to get rain away from your foundation? Do you have a yard the slopes towards your home?
Yeah, the only thing is that if the foundation guy wants work, it makes sense that he would suggest an expensive solution (he’s asking for a $4500 solution), when there could be other solutions that do not affect the resell of the house. Putting a sump pump in a bedroom significantly reduces the ability to use that room as a bedroom, and it raises a red flag during selling when you have 2 sump pumps in different rooms.

There has been no history of flooding in 16 years since the house was built, and no seepage of water through adjacent foundation cracks. This suggests to me that although this may be a problem, it may not be as serious as needing a second sump pump and invasive trenching.

The perimeter in that area looks mostly good, a downspout drains about 4 feet away, and it doesn’t seem like it is sloping toward the house. I may do some landscaping this summer to improve some of the grade.
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Old 05-08-2019, 09:56 AM   #20
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Quote:
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I'd 100% be listening to the foundation guy, and certainly not the home inspector. I really don't agree with anything he said.

What is the perimeter of your house like? Do you have adequate downspouts and extensions to get rain away from your foundation? Do you have a yard the slopes towards your home?
This - we constantly had water issues at my place, and fairly simple landscaping took care of most of the issues.
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