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Civil Engineering

Posted by BobB on July 25th, 2001 08:18 AM
In reply to Drainage Puzzle for the Construction Wise Men :) by Bob D on July 24th, 2001 02:53 PM [Go to top of thread]

Well, as one Bob EE, to another, I think you have to approach the problem logically. They taught us that water always runs down hill, ( and not to try pushin on a rope ). As I see it, you have to find a way to empty your french drain system. It will fill up under some storm condition , sometime , and as you have discovered, the clay soil drains too slowly to help. Hopefully you have enough property to establish a drain somewhere that is lower than the areas that are collecting water. If your entire property is a bowl, with your house at the lowest point, I don't know any good answer. And not to worry you, but what happens with the sump pumps, when during a severe storm, when you need them most, the power goes out ? I have seen it happen, and watched a coworker scurry home to bail water from his sump well. Also, a few years ago, the home next to mine had the two long cellar walls cave in due to hydrostatic pressure buildup from storm water and inadequate foundation drains in a clay soil environment. Their eventual solution was to establish two (redundancy) lengthy drains to a far corner of the lot that was just barely low enough to accept the run-off. It seems like Sir Newton's laws of gravity always win.
Good luck with a difficult problem.

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