Latest Discussions : Basement & Foundation


09:03AM | 06/15/04
Member Since: 06/14/04
1 lifetime posts
I am purchasing a house which has a problem getting water in the basement. I had B-Dry come and give me an estimate but the person from B-Dry told me that there is a chance that their french drain system cannot be installed. The reason is, according to him, because the foundation walls may have been built on top of the basement slab instead of on footings. I don't know if this was standard practice for houses built in this time period (built in 1948) or if this is some anomaly. Has anyone had any experience identifying a house built this way? Any suggestions if B-Dry cannot install the french drain system? Any ideas if there would be any further issues with the house if the walls are infact built on the slab?


08:26PM | 06/15/04
Member Since: 07/01/03
549 lifetime posts
The french drainage system they are proposing would involve cutting away the slab on the interior basement next to the wall. The alternative is to install a curtain drain outside the wall. The outside drain system would work better and would not pose a risk of undermining the footing. Due to the excavation involved, it is more expensive to install. Get a second opinion from a contractor with a more open-minded approach than a system based on interior drainage. Local foundation excavation contractors are good place to start rather than waterproofing companies.


10:29PM | 06/19/04
Member Since: 01/28/03
693 lifetime posts
If your home's foundation is indeed built on a slab below grade then your basement dewatering people have every right to be concerned about cutting the slab which can weaken the foundation and furthermore cause your house to collapse.

Furthermore as tomh recommended, you need to consider alternate plans including an exterior drainage system, but again...if the foundation is built directly on the basement slab even exterior excavation can undermine the integrity of the structure and cause your hosue to collapse.

If your home's foundation is built on an underground slab without footings, your only recourse it seems to me is to have your current situation evaluated by a structural engineer, a soils engineer, and your local code enforcement office to determine the best basement de-watering approach...and there are many...

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