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tomz71ss

05:39AM | 11/14/04
Member Since: 11/13/04
90 lifetime posts
Bvbasement
at some point in time, my basement was waterproofed [not sure by what company], and i have leakage in part of one wall. from what i can figure, the drainage system under the floor gets clogged with dirt/silt in the leaky area, thus not letting the water drain to the sump area as it should. i run a snake thru the 'drain pipe' at times, but this is very difficult due to the way my basement is layed out. i am thinking if i can access the 'drain pipe' on the 'starting' end of it, i might be able to 'engineer' something so i can more easily clean out the blockage when needed.

i am sure the problem stems from the outside of the basement wall, but due to added construction etc., the outside of that wall isn't accessable.

so, i am curious as to how these 'systems' are layed out, so i might try to go thru the floor and install some way to flush the line out without digging up my whole floor looking for access.

any ideas?


cellarwater

04:10PM | 11/14/04
Member Since: 12/09/03
175 lifetime posts
Yeah, break through the floor and install a tee with a cap that you can hose out the line with. Also I hope the drain is correctly pitched to the sump. A lot of drains get pitched in the wrong direction. C.

tomz71ss

12:31PM | 11/15/04
Member Since: 11/13/04
90 lifetime posts
i'm pretty sure it's pitched ok, cause when 'clear', it works fine.

my biggest question is, in relation to the wall, how far away would the pipe be? right next to it, or a few inches away from it? or is my best bet to pick a spot in the floor, by the wall, say a foot square and have at it?

tia

cellarwater

07:11PM | 11/15/04
Member Since: 12/09/03
175 lifetime posts
If you can measure the distance to the center of the pipe in the sump. Then do the same where you'll dig. Are the pipes clay or plastic or pitch fiber? Let me know C.

tomz71ss

01:29PM | 11/16/04
Member Since: 11/13/04
90 lifetime posts
wow, talk about brain fade! in my quest to figure out how these things are set up, i never once thought to measure for the pipe as you suggested. i plan to 'dig in' this weekend, and will post what i find.

thanks again,

t

tomz71ss

02:21PM | 11/17/04
Member Since: 11/13/04
90 lifetime posts
what would be the best way to 'attack' the floor? i'm thinking a 'masonary' wheel for my circular saw [ i know, at this point you're thinking 'this guy will be missing an arm with any saw' ], seem like a good idea?

also, when 'attacking' the floor, how deep would i have to go? obviously i can see the end of the pipe where it exits into the 'sump hole', but what kind of rise [of the pipe] would i expect to see over, say, 10 - 15 feet?

sorry for the crazy Q's, but i want to handle this in a weekend, and not rip up my whole floor, or all the pipe that is under the floor.

thanks again for the help,

t

cellarwater

04:27PM | 11/17/04
Member Since: 12/09/03
175 lifetime posts
Call in the blasting crew!! LOL ;) Take a look at the floor. Do you see a change in cement color where the drain was put in?? How old is the house?? My experience is buildings before 1955, have floors 2-3" thick. Later homes 4-6" thick. If the floor is thin a sledge hammer will work. If it's thick rent a demoloition hammer from a tool rental shop. It is like an electric jackhammer. I own one & it's great for breaking up floors. Let me know how you make out.C.

tomz71ss

01:38PM | 11/18/04
Member Since: 11/13/04
90 lifetime posts
ok, floor color, had thought of that, but as the 'crap' that's causing the problem has stained the floor considerably, i can't see any difference [nor can i along other walls really]. the thickness may be tricky i think, i know the house was built in '45, but i know the 'water proofing' was done much later [this made me think the floor would be 'thinner' in the area of the 'drainage device', or wouldn't it be?]. i was thinking of using the cutting wheel to cut out/deeply scribe a section, then hammer it out if need be so i have a nice clean 'hole' to work with, and i thought that might cut down the chance of unnecessary destruction as well.

now, for my next Q, as you mentioned earlier, there seem to be various types of piping that could have been used in this system, to properly put in a flush T, are these common items that are readily available at HD or lowe's? and depending on what type of pipe, what would i need to join whatever i 'plumb in'?

thanks again for all your help,

t

also, can you post pictures on this board? [direct, rather than a link]i thought you might get a kick out of the mess i need to fix, and if i can repair it, you might want to see some during/after pic's.

cellarwater

05:13PM | 11/18/04
Member Since: 12/09/03
175 lifetime posts
Photos, good idea. I can be e-mailed at cellarwater@hotmail.com. Try the saw with the masonry blade. The pipe is either round clay or an octagonal clay. 3 inch or 4 inch. it should be no more than a foot and a half deep. It also maybe possible there is two floors you'll have to cut through. As for making the connection from the clay to plastic they sell rubber couplers with clamps. Get a tape measure too, you'll need it. keep me informed. C.

tomz71ss

12:59PM | 11/19/04
Member Since: 11/13/04
90 lifetime posts
well, first thing tomorrow i am going to pick up a masonary blade, take some pictures, and get busy. i'll keep you updated.

thanks again,

t

tomz71ss

07:26AM | 11/20/04
Member Since: 11/13/04
90 lifetime posts
ok, i broke thru the floor in a small area where it looked like water was coming up thru. well, much to my suprise it was nothing like i expected! looks like in a channel along the wall footer are two corrugated pipes [black plastic] probably 2-3" in diameter laying in/covered with a bed of crushed stone. they also don't appear to be perforated[sp?]. there was some 'standing water' under the spot i hacked out, so i poked a couple holes in the pipe to get the water out of the way so i could see what the heck i was looking at.

now, if these pipes don't have holes in them along the entire run, how'n the heck does it move the water away from the channel they sit in??

i have half a mind to just go along that entire wall and hack out the pipes and remove the stone and leave an exposed channel so the water can run freely to the sump.

at this point, i don't think a flush 't' is going to fix my issue, any ideas?

will try to post a few pic's of my dilemma here shortly.

thanks,

t

tomz71ss

07:39AM | 11/20/04
Member Since: 11/13/04
90 lifetime posts
before i started [as usual, later than i wanted to]

http://tbillstoys.homestead.com/files/110_1061.JPG

http://tbillstoys.homestead.com/files/110_1063.JPG

http://tbillstoys.homestead.com/files/110_1066.JPG

any thoughts?

if the links don't work, let me know.

tomz71ss

09:10AM | 11/20/04
Member Since: 11/13/04
90 lifetime posts
ok, after more 'digging', i found the end of the pipe that goes into the sump pump hole. i get the feeling who ever did this job was laughing all the way to the bank. in the picture of the two pipes, if you look to the left, that's the direction i went. i found that the pipe furthest away from the wall ends just a few feet to the left, and the closest pipe to the wall goes into a 'cob job' 'T' a few more feet to the left, one end of this 't' goes into the sump pump hole, the other dissappears under the floor, presumably to my floor drain in the center of the floor [at this point, haven't 'snaked' that yet]. now, here is the interesting part, the end of this 't' that goes to the pump hole, it can only be snaked in one direction, if i go from the sump hole towards the 't', it goes, if i go from the 't' to the hole, it gets stuck/jammed. now i'm only using a small snake [tiny really], and the one way it goes right thru. also of note, i totally removed the pipe closest to the wall, [from my initial 'break thru point', this pipe goes a few feet to the right and ends], after doing this, the water started to make a slow migration to the now opened up 't', but the water still isn't flowing as fast to the sump hole as i would think it would, the pipe is still 7/8th submerged in water.

the thing that has me a bit confused is the fact i can only snake that pipe in one direction.

i now have maybe an 8' long section of the floor hammered out, and wonder if i should continue all the way to the sump hole to see what the heck is going on with the one way snake-ability, and to see if the pipe is actually going downhill enough.

whew, i need a beer...

tomz71ss

09:33AM | 11/20/04
Member Since: 11/13/04
90 lifetime posts
thanks, i hope to get this situated soon.

being an auto tech by trade, i'm used to seeing a schematic or some sort of diagram to follow how a system is layed out, this 'poking around in the dark' drives me nuts, lol. upside is my wife is impressed with the destruction i have managed to accomplish today, haha. i have a feeling when it's all done, with the help from here, i'll have a completely redesigned 'irrigation' system.

thanks again, and stay tuned for more pic's and developments........

tomh

10:18AM | 11/20/04
Member Since: 07/01/03
549 lifetime posts
Pretty impressive color you have in that hole! The drain pipe is probably made with lots of small slits to allow water to enter. Clean off the piece you removed and check it. Once its cleaned out, you can bend it into a U shape and fill it. Water should escape from the holes. That will tell you whether you have permeable tile. Judging from all the fines, its easy to imagine the drain holes are clogged. You might try feeding a hose with the water on from the sump drin into the perimeter pipe. That should clean out the pipe and might reveal if it is draining properly.

Replacing the entire perimeter would be a big job, but is a possible solution. If you choose to do so, I would replace that black flexible drain with a PVC line with holes (holes face the bottom. Also be sure to remove that contaminated drain rock and replace with washed drain rock. You can recycle some of yours if you can make a screen tub to hold the rock and you just wash off all the silt.

I hope Cellarwater stops by with a comment soon. Meanwhile, enjoy that beer. You're going to need it.

tomz71ss

10:49AM | 11/20/04
Member Since: 11/13/04
90 lifetime posts
a DIY project like this doesn't bother me too much, i just set small goals throughout a project, and as i meet them, i set another goal to reach, as long as i can keep reaching my set goal, and it doesn't disrupt the daily 'flow' of my family, i'm ok. past projects include siding my garage, hanging entry doors, building a few decks on the house, installing carpet, minor wiring etc. the only difference in this little snafu is i'm not totaly sure of what my next step should be, i know what i want to do, but not sure if it's needed, or correct to do so. as i say, i usually have a game plan on what i want to get done, this is kind of a figure it out as i go type thing [with much head scratching, eye rolling, and the occasional cursing fit, hehe]. good thing this is only an issue along one wall.

luckily the beer is cold. if you folks like, i could bag up a little bit of that 'rich, red, plugging all my cellars innards' muck and send ya some [big smile here, wink].

cellarwater

03:54PM | 11/20/04
Member Since: 12/09/03
175 lifetime posts
I'm sure the whole 6-pack is gone now! Feed the sump pump a couple....it will feel better!! [LOL ;)] That is a very reddish colored soil. Check the pipe grade going back to the sump it should a gradual slope down all the way, no hills. Water will always flow downhill. That pipe,replace it. as Tomh mentioned get the solid 4 inch swiss pipe. How is the crushed stone? if it's all clogged with silt dig it out wash it and if you need to get more. set at least 5inches depth of stone below the bottom of the pipe [ excuse me while run for a cold one;)] I'm back The stone can be purchased in bags at you know depot or you can call the local sand plant for a larger quantity. K2 how did you make out with that micropump for your crawl space?? I'll be back. C.

cellarwater

04:41PM | 11/20/04
Member Since: 12/09/03
175 lifetime posts
Too bad it isn't gold! I wonder what state he is in. I'm in Mass. I think once I saw some colored clay. May be that is the material they cast bricks out of?? Interesting. I have my name in Greg's office for a moderator. He's busy but informed me he'll contact me soon. It would be an honor to get that position. The late Plumber Tom was the first to refer me [ We knew each other's e-mail adresses] He was helpful to me. Bless him. C.

tomz71ss

04:03AM | 11/21/04
Member Since: 11/13/04
90 lifetime posts
well, no more digging today, have family things to do.

the beer did taste good though. and to answer your question, i'm located just outside of Syracuse NY.

ok, back to the subject, i'm concerned about digging the rest of this out, re-plumbing it and then dealing with the possibility of it all getting plugged up again. my main worry is due to the quantity of silt that finds it's way into the area. and i still don't quite get the logic behind how this was set up in the first place. like i said before, that one pipe just ended, and at the end was [is] just a pile of muck, and compounding that problem is the fact that my fuel oil tank is a foot or so away,[so i'm at the end of my dig in that direction] so if i get the 'trench' cleaned out and re-stoned, what do i do with the end of the pipe? or should i put my 'flush device' on the end of that pipe and have it come up thru the floor?

i'm also guessing that i need to continue the destruction all the way back to the sump hole [for peace of mind if nothing else], to make sure it is running downhill, probably do that after work monday. i'll put up a few more pic's after surgery so you can also see what i found.

thanks again folks,

t

cellarwater

05:48AM | 11/21/04
Member Since: 12/09/03
175 lifetime posts
You'll have a fresher mind when you come back to that project. Continue on as you described. & You'll be fine C.

tomh

07:34AM | 11/21/04
Member Since: 07/01/03
549 lifetime posts
If you replace the flexible tile with PVC drain pipe (3 or 4 -inch), the silt will not readily accumulate. You could also install a capped standpipe in the highest corner away from the sump. This could be periodiocally opened to flush the line. To prevent silt, consider installing a layer of landscape cloth on the bottom of the excavation. This is permeable to water, but will filter most sediments before it reaches the drain rock and drain tile.

Your idea to install a flush provision on the end of the pipe is excellent. Take a look at sanitary Tees or cleanouts that match the size of the drain pipe you install. The tee connects between two sections of drain pipe and has a long radius curve that you would install vertically. This would allow you to force water into the drain, and because of the long radius, would also allow the use of a snake.

Note that the pipe sections are held in place by the gravel and slab. They do not necessarily need to have glue welded joints. Most foundation drains are not glued to facilitate maintenance.

In terms of strategy here, prevention is better than dealing with the high water that causes the problem. Some form of exterior curtain drain or grading improvement seems to be in order to prevent water from reaching the foundation. Think about where water comes from. If you have a generally high water table, an interceptor drain and surface drainage will probably not help. In this case, dewater by dropping the sump invert to a lower elevation and create a cone of depression in your water table, below the footer. Punch out the base of the sump and dig it as deep as you can manually, backfill with 6-inches of drain rock and install your sump pump. Water will enter the sump from the ground as well as your perimeter drain. This should, in time, provide hydraulic gradient to the lowest point (sump) resulting in a lower water table under the house slab.
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