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Excessive water in crawl space

Posted by Larry on May 17th, 1998 02:58 PM

We made an offer on a house in southern MD and during the inspection, and inch or two of standing water was discovered in the crawl space of this concrete block foundation house. Subsequent inspection by multiple waterproofing companies indicates the likely cause is a combination of high water table from the recent heavy rains, improper control of water from downspouts and the sump pump discharge, and most significantly, improperly installed drain tile tubing. Apparantly, the drain tile installed around the inside perimeter of the foundation is not at the right depth and is not pitched properly to allow any collected water to flow back to the supm pump basin. Also, the companies claim that a single sump pump is not sufficient for the length of the drain tile. Essentially what is happening is since the drain tile system doesn't work, the water level just rises up when there are wet periods. Five days after the last rain (and it rained 13 days straight) there is still considerable standing water. Most of it is under the vapor barrier, but a considerable amount is riding on top, most likely due to rips/cuts in the barrier. The suggested solutions call for reinstalling the drain tile system (at the proper depth and pitch) and diverting water away from the house. At present, the sump pump discharges in the back yard and while there is good grass, an area around the discharge point approximately 10-15 feet in all directions is still saturated to the point it is like walking on jello. I suspect the sump pump discharge is being driven under the sod into the sandy rocky base below and the water is riding between the sod and the clay layer which is prevelent in this area. Possibly, the water is feeding back into the crawl space from there just creating a circular flow. From inside the crawl space, I can scrape the gravel back along the back yard wall and find standing water an inch or so down. Also find the drain tile pipe at that level. Estimates to correct proplem are in the range of $4000. Of course, seller is upset. The builder obviously messed this one up, but the house is seven years old and they will probably not feel obligated to correct the problem. Any thoughts on how to procede?

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