Latest Discussions : Basement & Foundation


06:22PM | 06/27/05
Member Since: 06/26/05
3 lifetime posts
I'm hoping you all can offer some expert guidance on the best approach to help dry out our basement. Our home is about 80 yrs. old with a stone foundation and (I've been told) a gravel footer. We've been in the house 6 yrs. and the basement floods frequently with rains (and a couple time following overzelous use of a sprinkler!) Tinkering with the grading, gutters, downspouts, etc. has all helped some, but we still have water in the basement. I was under the impression that the *best* solution would be to excivate the exterior foundation, apply some sort of membrane and then fill with drainage pipe and gravel. We've consulted with 3 basement waterproofing contractors and all recommended variations on the theme of French drains and a sump pump. Two were franchsees of national chains and one was a private plumbing contractor with accreditation by the NAWSRC (National Association of Waterproofing and Foundation Repair). The last person seemed particularly knowledgeable and when I proposed the exterior solution she explained that such an approach with a home such as ours would seriously jeopardize the structural integrety of our home's foundation.

So now I'm really confused. As much as I want to save money, I don't want to be a penny wise and pound foolish. Neither do I want to knock my home down! I'm not looking to finish our basement as a living space (I think that's asking WAY too much!) but would be perfectly happy being able to store things down there without them becoming soggy.

So, in a nutshell: what's the story with exterior waterproofing on stone foundations with rubble footers.


Baffled in Baltimore


07:45PM | 08/01/05
Member Since: 07/31/05
1 lifetime posts
Hello Baffled..

I've been going through the same frustrating experience with my stone foundation. I dug a 3'long by 2'wide hole along the inside of a wall to check the footings. I have a footing made of large loose stones. There is no room for an internal drain. The large "footer" stones are in the way. Have you gotten any answers?

Wits-end in White Plains


08:11PM | 08/01/05
Member Since: 11/27/04
172 lifetime posts
a method that wouldn't disturb your foundation could be to dig around the foundation about 10 feet away(depending on stable soil conditions for the foundation. use this trench for the drain tile, making sure it is about 1 foot below your basement.and add about 2 feet of drain rock on top of draintile with a filter fabric. if you have clay soil ,then backfill with good draining material. then in the 10 foot area to the foundation, dig out about a foot of soil down that lightly slopes to the drain tile and put in heavy plastic in one or two layers.

will keep water away.only good if you have the room.

otherwise it depends on how big and square the foundation stone is for digging out short areas and pressure washing and spraying on rubber membrane water proofing and installing drain tile in these 8 foot areas. backfillg andcompacting lightly and then open up the next areas.

Remember the past or all is lost.


05:11AM | 08/16/09
Member Since: 08/15/09
1 lifetime posts
I have the same issue with the stone foundation. I have seen two possible remedies that I would love to hear some input about. The first is a house with a stone foundation. This house has a concrete apron which starts at the edge of the foundation and runs out a few feet away from the house. This apron runs all the way around the house. I have yet to speak with the home owner so I don't know how effective it is.

The second is a house that I was in the basement one night. The house has a pudding stone foundation. Inside someone built a wall all the way around the basement in front of the stone foundation. This wall was solid brick. There was absoltely no odor of mold or mildew at all. I did not get to speak to the person who had done the work so I was unable to ascertain what he or she might have done behind the brick to eliminate the mold/mildew/water issue. It was a great look and seemed to be effective. My questions on this are (1) if you did this would you need a footer poured to carry the weight or would the present floor be good enough. (2) Could you put some sort of a rubber membrane on the stone foundation (obviously on the inside) and then fill the cavity created between the brick and the cement with concrete? This would be basically giving you in effect a solid concrete wall. (3) Instead of filling it could you put some sort of french drain down inside the cavity to allow water to come in and get carried away to a sump pump?

If anyone has any thoughts I would love to hear them.


12:03PM | 03/05/10
Member Since: 03/04/10
1 lifetime posts

I am thinking of buying an older home that is on a stone foundation with a 3" crawl space.

Apparently in the spring the water comes up and there is a "trickle) across the laminate flooring.

I'm concerned!

Any ideas of how I would be able to divert or waterproof the crawl space/


09:55AM | 03/12/10
Member Since: 03/24/08
62 lifetime posts
We had a similar situation, but because of exterior issues (driveway right up against the house, etc) decided to approach it from the inside. I'm assuming your basement is not finishes since you're getting water on a regular basis. They do a similar process from inside where they tear out the floor, put in the drain system and then add a sump pump. Ours worked great and we stayed dry through several big storms. In terms of finding the contractors, ask for references of home owners who did this 5 to 7 years ago, so you can go look at it (to make sure it's a real reference) and see if has stood the test of time. The plumber sounds like the best of the bunch, just from what you said. Here's a link that might help, although you may know all this by now:

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