Once can imagine the frustration a homeowner would feel if they just spent a boat load of cash on a basement water problem and it didn’t fix the problem. Adam Tracy, aka The CrackDaddy, enlightens us with another great case study.
Narrator: It’s time once again for the “Crack Man Podcast” hosted by A1 Foundation Crack Repair. I’m Darren Kincaid here with the Crack Daddy himself, Adam Tracy. Adam and The Crack Man Rich have over 30 years’ experience in the construction industry. Rich as over 25 years as the president and founder of A1 Foundation Crack Repair. This podcast provides expert basement waterproofing, concrete repair, and preventative maintenance tips for homeowners and businesses. A1 Foundation’s valuable insight will help avert a disastrous flood within the basement, health problems associated with water infiltration, and protect your biggest investment….your home. The topic of today’s podcast: Why is my new drain system not solving my basement water problem?
Narrator: Adam, I can imagine the frustration a homeowner would feel if they just spent a boatload of cash on a basement water problem and it didn’t fix the problem. You have another great case study to share with our listeners today. What happened there?
Adam: This is a story about a property in Acton MA that we had gotten a call on. They were getting a lot of water into their finished basement. Their daughter’s room, the carpet was getting wet after every rainstorm, and they were kind of at their wit’s end trying to figure out how the water was coming in. So, we did a little bit of investigative work with them just to try to get to the bottom of what it could be and found out that it was a below-grade room and the windows were about chest height.
It was a half wall and they had installed a 25-foot trench drain system with concrete right outside the window. That water would go into the drain and then go to a dry well nearby. The first obvious question was, “Well, is that clogged? Is there an issue with that?” I told them, “You know, get the company that installed that back in there to make sure the drains are clear and that there’s no debris that’s causing a clog. Maybe it’s an overflow that could be coming in through the window area.” And they came in and just, you know, went through the whole system and it was working fine.
I thought, okay, monitor for the next rain, see if it gets water in there. And sure enough after that next rain, they had water in the basement, right outside the windows, and the carpet was wet. They asked, “What can we do?” And we said that we’d have to do a water test to see how the water is coming in. I can’t see through the walls. I can’t tell you how, exactly it’s coming, we have to see it when it happens.”
They hired us to come out and do a water test with them. We were able to isolate that drain system from the overall foundation and run water so that it could get underneath the drain system, deeper into the soil, without it kind of being washed away. And after about 150 gallons of water in the area, we start seeing water come out. So now, we’ve been able to isolate the drain system from the foundation and found that when we had the water a little bit further away and it got deep into the soil, it was indeed coming through the foundation. Well again, we saw the water coming in, but we didn’t see how it’s coming.
We had to open up the wall. And once we opened up the wall, we saw what I conclude is an ancient repair. It's definitely a 30, 40 years old hydraulic cement, you know, very typical repair for a homeowner putting hydraulic cement over this. And they put hydraulic cement on the inside, and on the outside, the foundation was painted in stucco, so it’s really hard to see any sort of repair that had been done previously. In there, there was a four foot crack that went from the top of the foundation down the bottom, right underneath the windows. And sure enough, after a little bit of water, in about 20, 30 minutes or running water, we were able to see water coming in. And you would imagine that after a heavy rainstorm, all that water that turns, goes into the soil and then eventually comes through into the foundation.
It turns out that they didn’t really need that drain system that they put in there. They could have just solved it with the crack, but it was already in there, so it’s just going to add additional protection measures so the water doesn’t come into the foundation. But we’re able to fix that crack, gave them warranty and now they don’t have to worry about water coming in anymore. But cautionary tale, don’t always just assume that the drain’s going to fix it, make sure you find the root of the problem. You can save yourself a boatload of money.
Narrator: Thanks Adam. Hopefully, this case study will help prevent someone in the future from being frustrated by a basement water repair that doesn’t work.
Narrator: If you have a basement water problem and think you need a professional, or, if you’d like more information on foundation crack repair and basement waterproofing topics, please visit A1FoundationCrackRepair.com or call Rich at (866) 929-3171. Or you can email Rich at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for listening and keep that basement dry.