Christmas morning I awoke to heavy rains and water in the basement--some is seeping in through the crack between the foundation and the wall, but there is one crack in the wall where water literally pours in when it rains.
This crack brought in about 30 gallons of water on a 1.68" rainfall over 10 hours that day. When it stopped raining, the leak stopped.
I had new gutters put in immediately, taking the downspouts out of the underground pipes, so now the gutters drain with plastic drain pipes about 18" from the house.
But New Year's Day I awoke to more rains and more flooding--this time 50 GALLONS from the one crack over a period of about 9 hours and under 2" of rain.
1. poured foundation, some vertical cracks, have been checked out by a building contractor and a home inspector. Some of the cracks leak, not all.
2. Large pin oak in front of house, same wall where there are cracks.
3. Front yard is flat, yard grades downhill to back yard.
4. Leak is toward front of house on driveway side, but is relatively dry aboveground--no puddling where the leak would be. Driveway has been checked out and water is draining properly toward back yard.
5. Gutters, roof both check out fine. There are 5 gutters now, and while one is just uphill from the leak it is draining properly down the driveway and is about 18" from the house. No water from that gutter is getting anywhere near the house.
6. There is an enclosed front porch just in front of the wall where the leak is. Underneath the porch it is BONE DRY.
7. There are French drains but no sump pump in the basement. There are holes cut in the floor with plexiglass covers--the drain to the rear of the house has a trickle of water; the drain to the front of the house is standing water that's not moving. I stuck a 6-8" snake through as far as I could and hit no obstructions.
8. Basement floor also slopes toward the rear. Leak is to front of house.
9. Near 'waterfall' leak are the underground pipes for gutters that run parallel to the house--before I had gutters replaced I could hear the gutter draining down the pipe, and it sounded as if it were draining to the back yard just fine.
Now that the gutters are out of the ground, I don't hear any water running through those pipes. The holes have been covered up but not filled in.
10. The home inspector managed to open up the water meter cover--the dials to the meter are under about a half-foot of water. I called city/county folk, and the storm drain guy came out and opened the drain that is downhill from me--that water is running. However, the guy couldn't find the uphill drain.
11. Neighbor swears the previous owner had a dry basement--he used to brag about it, and I called the 86-year-old previous owner, who told me that at most he had maybe a couple of gallons after a really heavy rain.
And when I originally looked at the house, there was so much crap in the basement [the previous owner ran a flea market business] that there's no way the basement wouldn't be mildewed if it was this bad.
12. Plumbing pipes inside aren't leaking, and anyway it only happens when it rains. When the rain stops it's okay.
13. Water is light brown.
I will gladly pay for waterproofing or repairs, but it seems to me that this leak is so significant that waterproofing isn't going to do anything but move the problem to another area. I need someone to help me find the problem before I can pay to repair it.