Window well to weeping tile in an old home

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Posted by: from Etobicoke
8/29/2018 at 10:30:27 PM

We just bought an old home build in 1910. We want to put window wells by the basement windows.

Given the age of the home, we are pretty sure it doesn't have a weeping tile system.


Do we need to have weeping tile if we have a window well? Also, do we need to have aquablock or basement sealing on the whole side of that house?

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Date/Time8/30/2018 at 8:07:52 AM

Hi Andrew:

Yes -- you should have weeping tile line the exterior of the home even with a window well. Reason being is the drainage the window well provides needs to connect to something to dissipate the water. This is generally the weeping tile system.

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Stefan T from Arrow Landscaping in Hamilton
Date/Time8/30/2018 at 2:59:21 PM

Good afternoon,

My name is Stefan/owner of Arrow Landscaping. I suggest calling Thomas R. Birnie & Sons! Speak with Jonathan and let him know that I personally referred you to him regarding weeping tile. It would make great sense to put inlace this system as the age of the house is from 1910.



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Date/Time8/30/2018 at 4:06:20 PM

Generally speaking there should be a pipe which is the weeping tile pipe that leads from about 4 in underneath the window in the window and is connected to the weeping tile was drains the water from the foundation to the city sewer system so yes generally they should be connected.

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Date/Time9/2/2018 at 1:21:01 PM

Homes even today are not mandated to have weeping tile. I have seen new homes built on very sandy soils where none was installed; it all depends on the soils.

The Code also does not mandate weeping tile for window wells. I have 3 shallow window wells on my own new home + a lowered entry door and all have no connection to the weeping tile. I only dug down a few inches and put in a some washed rock and it was passed by the grading inspector. There has never been any water accumulation either under melting conditions or a heavy rainfall.

Not familiar with aquablock product. The Code requires an application of 2 coats of dampproofing (contractors usually one apply 1). Aquablock is described as a one-coat product so not sure.

Although a building permit may not be required for your minor project, you could consult your local authority to ensure you are on the right track. that you Aquablock product is acceptable and you're not in violation of any development regulations, code rules or municipal bylaws.

If you are told other than what I have told you I suggest you ask to be shown the rule. Sometimes you will be misinformed (happened to me many times) and individuals will have their own interpretation of the Code.

Ian Derksen Safety Codes Officer - Building

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