Water Under the Basement Concrete

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Posted by: from Brampton
2/20/2013 at 1:00:04 PM

I have bought a 15 year old house that has septic system. There is a sump pit, but no sump pump. There is NO connection to the pit, but the water slowly leaks into it around 6" below floor level. I have installed a new sump pump as the pit fills up every 3-4 hours. We are also digging 24" footings to install new posts for steel beam in basement. One footing has a weeping tile running thru it & water is constantly filling up that hole.

I called the previous owner / builder and he said that the weeping tiles are NOT connected to anything. The water does not seep up into the basement because of the weeping tile running thru the middle of the basement. (thru the footing hole). Don't know where it drains, but right now it is draining into the 2 foot deep hole for footing. There is no mold & no musty water smell either.

To summarize there is water under the concrete pad in the basement, but does not come above. The weeping tile must be draining somewhere.

Should I be digging another new permanent pit to draw water to drain?

Should I be concerned or is this normal??

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Richard from Attard Plumbing Ltd in Toronto
Date/Time2/20/2013 at 2:41:29 PM


My name is Richard Attard of Attard plumbing Ltd. I hold a master plumber licence for over 25year. From my lap top I can only give you my best guess if there is no pipes tied directly to the pit .

Under your slab is filled with ground water. My suggestion is to drill holes into your upper part of your existing pit and install a pump to turn on above ground water level. Also try to find out how much gravel is under your concrete slab ground water is normal but I would concern with the previous workmen ship.

Thank you

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Date/Time2/20/2013 at 2:46:24 PM

Let me first start by saying, we are a roofing company but with that said, we also do below grade waterproofing i.e. (foundations, parking garages, etc.)

Water underlying any product for any extended period of time will eventually cause damage, this is why there's a need for drainage i.e. (weeping tile, sumps, etc.) The best solution I see is to establish a drainage retention basin as far away from the foundation as possible and somewhere away from the existing septic system.

If dug 6ft. deep x 6ft. in diameter and lined with aggregate (3/4" crush atop pea gravel) this will allow the collection of water to disperse gradually away from the foundation as it should be, run all your BIG O drainage with fabric sock to this location on a 1-2% grade and things will be a lot better.

As the saying goes "buyer beware"

Good luck with your endeavor.

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Date/Time2/20/2013 at 3:03:03 PM

Hi there,

You are going to need a sump pump. And a pit.

Thanks. This will resolve your water problem 100%.

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Zeeshan from Pak Constructions in Cornwall
Date/Time2/20/2013 at 3:18:23 PM

It is normal water dry itself as you mentioned " the weeping tile running thru the middle of the basement " there is no other cure... it might happens only in winter. If you are too concern than the foundation of your house needs to be fixed otherwise there is nothing you can do.

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Constantine from Constantine in Toronto
Date/Time2/20/2013 at 3:21:16 PM

Dear friend,

Weeping tiles with the existing building code should come to a barrel pit that is connected with sump pump that sends the water out of your house

In your case this one does not apply. Normally the best ground for drainage is sand. I believe your soil must be clay and thats why you do not have a good drainage. Your only solution is to dig and find a weeping tile and connect it to a barrel sump pump.

Also I would suggest that you make some extra holes on the upper side of the barrel to pick up any extra ground water that weeping tiles do not get.

You have to take care of this ASAP. A large amount of water under the cement floor that does not drain fast is a cause for bigger problems down the road.

Good luck with your project and please use A LICENCED contractor if you hire one.

With respect,


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Date/Time2/20/2013 at 3:34:12 PM

I see this type of work all the time. The problem is that the so called owner/builder never followed the building code.

Perimeter weeping pipe in a sock with crushed stone leading to a dry well and insuring the drain pipe is below the concrete pad at a grade is mandatory. Now you have water under the floor and FOOTINGS which saturates the soil and then the footings drop, crack as well as the block work or poured wall above.

Excess water under the floor even creates a void between the pad and stone under the floor if there is any of that. I have seen 2" in some cases. In a very wet spring the water static level will rise and start filling blocks or come through the wall.

I have customers who have warning buzzers and battery back up on there pumps if Hydro goes out.

The new sump pit will be a temp fix ...You should be looking at doing it right and digging outside and installing the drain. Keep snow away from the house as much as possible and insure the eve troughs are taking water away from the wall.

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Date/Time2/20/2013 at 7:08:43 PM

Having water 6" below the concrete floor may be normal, it depends on the water table in your location. If that is your normal water table height, they should have built the house higher. Most of Brampton is clay and it does not drain very well.

The weeping tile running in the middle of the floor, along with the weeping tiles that run around the outside of the foundation wall should be connected to your sump pit. If you don't know were the tiles go and don't want to randomly break up the floor to find out. Call in a plumber with a scope and locator to find out. Then connect them to the sump pit, that will keep the water level under control.

The discharge from the pump should go outside away from the foundation. It should never be connected to your septic tank. The tank can't handle and was never designed for that volume of water.

One more thing, with the weather we have been having this winter, you might have a higher than normal water level.

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Date/Time2/20/2013 at 8:10:55 PM

Hi There,

This is the serious problem. The only who come partly close is Ron from Ron Dennis Construction. The others don't have a clue what they are talking about.

There is only one reason for anyone to install weeping tile, it's to collect excess water (rain) and then distribute the same into the ground. In your case by having weeping tiles is like not having them atoll, if they lead nowhere.

There is two ways of dealing with weeping tile, one making drainage bad and the other sub pump and disposing it as far as possible from the house.

People like yourself who are on the septic system are at a disadvantage. You have no city system and you are stuck to deal with it on your own. The idea is to take water away from the house and that is the reason for weeping tile and it is not normal to have water under your floor, like someone mentioned.

To build drainage system is expensive proposition, that is why was not build in first place.

Ask the pros is excellent way to see who knows what to do. Just to blow hot air doesn't not work on this column.

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Date/Time2/22/2013 at 6:36:16 PM

Just a follow up with due respect to the response from Mr. OMC. Even a stupid roofer that knows nothing about shedding water properly had the best approach to resolving this issue. You only had to read entirely what was written before replying so negatively to sound advice from professionals that have been in business since 1977.

Furthermore, is spell check, grammar, etc. not standard on all computers these days!

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Date/Time2/22/2013 at 7:06:40 PM

Hey Steve,

If you ever get out of the city, there are situations of having a high water table. Check any house near a river, creek, swamp, a high level aquafier or a the bottom of the niagara escarpment. Country homes are different, and I've run across quite a few over the years.

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Date/Time2/28/2013 at 8:45:42 PM

Just for Lori from Lakeview roofing,

If you didn't know subject is Basement not the roof, I apologize for my spelling. I did't know it mater so much to you. Next time I will be more focussed on my spelling.

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