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calvinslawnservices
09-26-2011, 09:12 AM
Hello Everyone,

I have a lawn mowing customer that has a drainage and washout problem.

The water is starting at the top of the patio running around the the cement wall down the grade to the flat ground and under the cement slab and ponds around the house. What advice could I give the homeowner on correcting this problem.

The pictures show an overview of the area:
Blue is where the water is flow and the red areas are point downgrade.

Thank you for your opinions.

calvinslawnservices
09-26-2011, 11:30 AM
Here is an overview of the area.

PaperCutter
09-26-2011, 12:17 PM
"You want a walkout basement? We can do that no problem!" seriously, wtf was the builder thinking?

I can see that everything slopes to the patio like a bowl. When you walk up the slope out of the bowl, is there anywhere that the land then slopes down again away from the house? It would be a monster trench cut through the hill, but if you can pipe it to somewhere lower at the other side of the hill that would be the best bet.

calvinslawnservices
09-26-2011, 12:56 PM
I know the builder was an idiot. If the house was flipped they wouldn't have had to dig out anything, except a couple feet. I have thought about that there is a low point in the woods away from the house but it is far back there like 200'. They would have to dig out like ~20' down through mature trees. If you follow the blue line in the last picture, that is where they trench for electric and gas (I believe). So you can't take it out that way with redoing the lines.

They are only worried about there patio on the top, with the sand washing out from under it. I don't even know where the water is coming from for that. I don't think they understand that there is 6 inches of water next to there house in the spring. Who ever installed the air conditioner noticed and put the slab for the air conditioner on 4*4's.

Skimastr105
09-26-2011, 01:58 PM
I'm from the area and could help consult on this. PM me if interested.

DVS Hardscaper
09-26-2011, 06:15 PM
yeah, that house should not have had a walk our basement. Or.....they should have set the house about 12-14 inches higher.


First of all, let me say: this is a wooded lot (obviously). You DO NOT want to install any types of drain boxes, etc. IT WILL CLOG.

As previously mentioned: this is a FREAKIN bowl in their backyard!

Somewhere someone will have to come in with an excavator and a loader and will have to cut sut a swale. The water needs an escape.

This should be done by someone with experience with cutting and grading soil.


.

DVS Hardscaper
09-26-2011, 06:26 PM
And oh! Can you explain the 'Ford Expedition Forum' (the window at the top of your picture)?

haha - what on earth could they discuss? "Oh, I just love my 2008 Expedition, it is so easy to park at the mall when we go Christmas shopping........"


:)


,

Dr.NewEarth
09-26-2011, 06:56 PM
That house wouldn't have been issued a building permit around here.

Can you put in a herring bone drainage system that leads into a French drain with an electric sump pump?

RussellB
09-26-2011, 07:37 PM
Looking at these pics I have a feeling the walk out basement idea was not originally part of the construction of this house. Did Harry homeowner get a bright idea? I wouldn't go near this place out of fear for being blmed for structural damage.
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calvinslawnservices
09-26-2011, 07:40 PM
DVS: What is "sut a swale"? And the expedition forum is just like this forum except for expeditions, more technical stuff than anything else. I wish I had a F 250.

Dr. New Earth: I agree with the building permit. I have thought about the drainage system which collects water and pumps it up and over the swale. But I am not sure about the installation of it.

If you look at the cement wall the 3 panel from the left to the 5 panel. They is a crack that runs all the way from the top to the bottom.

calvinslawnservices
09-26-2011, 07:41 PM
Russell, I am not sure if it was a last min addition or not. The home is only 2 years old. The homeowners are exactly the do it yourselfers.

DVS Hardscaper
09-26-2011, 07:43 PM
That house wouldn't have been issued a building permit around here.

Can you put in a herring bone drainage system that leads into a French drain with an electric sump pump?

Electrical sump pump. Mechanical mechanism.

What happens when the grand mother is living out her last 6 months and they're busy visiting grandma and trying to keep her comfortable in her final days. They're never home, always at the nursing home and barely have time to do their laundry. Sump kicks the bucket, and they're completely unaware.

Yeah, I believe in relying on gravity. This way there are no motors to fail, circuits to trip, etc.
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DVS Hardscaper
09-26-2011, 07:46 PM
DVS: What is "sut a swale"? And the expedition forum is just like this forum except for expeditions, more technical stuff than anything else. I wish I had a F 250.

Dr. New Earth: I agree with the building permit. I have thought about the drainage system which collects water and pumps it up and over the swale. But I am not sure about the installation of it.

If you look at the cement wall the 3 panel from the left to the 5 panel. They is a crack that runs all the way from the top to the bottom.


Cut a swale.

Crack in the wall could be nothin. Walls do crack, not usually a big deal.

.
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Skimastr105
09-26-2011, 08:54 PM
A drainage swale is definitely the best way to fix problems. I agree with DVS about not relying on a mechanical pump do deal with the water. Hopefully your site allows for a swale. If you need help, let me know. We can get you fixed up.

PSUhardscaper
09-26-2011, 10:09 PM
I like the 7' death drop from the upper patio onto the walkout. Maybe they have a glass railing I can't see, but that looks incredibly dangerous.

Kiril
09-26-2011, 10:35 PM
Hello Everyone,

I have a lawn mowing customer that has a drainage and washout problem.

The water is starting at the top of the patio running around the the cement wall down the grade to the flat ground and under the cement slab and ponds around the house. What advice could I give the homeowner on correcting this problem.

The pictures show an overview of the area:
Blue is where the water is flow and the red areas are point downgrade.

Thank you for your opinions.

How about you start with moving the water from the downspouts away from the house?

calvinslawnservices
09-26-2011, 11:13 PM
The 7' drop yea that's always fun to trim and no there's no glass railing or anything. That is my first recommendation to them (moving the downspouts), but they don't realize the importance of the standing water near the house. They only care about fixing the upper patio washout. Any suggestions on that? I was thinking about a french drain parallel to the patio that takes the water and runs it out to the woods.

DVS Hardscaper
09-27-2011, 05:52 AM
a french drain could work, but I'm not a fan of any drywells near the house. I believe a drywell should be as far away from any structures (with foundations) as possible.

SVA_Concrete
09-27-2011, 08:08 AM
A swale is the preferred method to get water away from the foundation the least amount of maintenance involved.

Im not sure that plumbing the gutter drops will help much.. by the looks of the ground and the apparent lack of adequate quantity of drops the rain is overflowing the gutters anyway.

You may be able to band aid with some fabric and surge gravel between the wall and upper patio.

But really that wall elevation should be at the patio elevation or preferably a touch higher to keep water from stacking against the wall. Sell them on adding to the elevation of that wall (with proper pre inspection and eng analysis) add a rail to the wall

It is normal for walls to develop cracks... but that wall really doesn't look long enough to develop a harmless shrinkage crack on its own. Typically with an 8 inch wall you can have 20 foot lengths between control joints. My guess is they doweled the wall into the house and hydro pressure has pushed out the far (from the house) side of the wall thereby causing the crack. Of course I am assuming quite a bit based on a few photos.
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calvinslawnservices
09-27-2011, 12:46 PM
I think I am going to make the following recommendations to them:
Install swales with french drains and daylight it in the woods. (Bowl) (Yellow)
Tie gutter system into french drain.
Raise cement wall to above patio with railing.

The upper patio and washout area I am still unsure of. I had the idea on another french drain (Green) that moves the water towards the rear of the house in the woods. But any other ideas of stopping the washout.

Here are more pictures of the washout area and a rough sketch of the swales.

calvinslawnservices
09-27-2011, 04:55 PM
Forgot to add pictures

SVA_Concrete
09-27-2011, 06:46 PM
I think I am going to make the following recommendations to them:
Install swales with french drains and daylight it in the woods. (Bowl) (Yellow)
Tie gutter system into french drain.
Raise cement wall to above patio with railing.

The upper patio and washout area I am still unsure of. I had the idea on another french drain (Green) that moves the water towards the rear of the house in the woods. But any other ideas of stopping the washout.

First ... it is a concrete wall and cement is a binder. Portland cement is the binder used to make concrete :)

Second. If you raise the elevation of the wall backfill and seed you should fix the scouring problem at that upper slab

And im curious. If you have a sealed cut why need the french drain

Here are more pictures of the washout area and a rough sketch of the swales.
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DVS Hardscaper
09-27-2011, 07:04 PM
With all due respect, I hope you are not thinkin of doing the drainage work :)

This is a job that should be handled by a small excavating company or a small operation where the owner works onsite and has an excellent track record of working with drainage challanges.

calvinslawnservices
09-27-2011, 07:16 PM
I'm not planing on doing the work myself. I wish I could, I am just trying to point the homeowner in the right direction, because I am tired of trying to make it look good when its underwater.:rolleyes: I would like to be there to watch and learn though.

Krafty
09-27-2011, 10:51 PM
And oh! Can you explain the 'Ford Expedition Forum' (the window at the top of your picture)?

haha - what on earth could they discuss? "Oh, I just love my 2008 Expedition, it is so easy to park at the mall when we go Christmas shopping........"


:)


,

Hahaha that just made my night thanks Devious!!!

calvinslawnservices
09-28-2011, 10:21 PM
Does anyone have any ideas about the washout area next to the cement wall? Wpuld a french drain work? Or would it be a wall and then proper drainage behind wall? Or something completely different? Thanks, Calvin

SVA_Concrete
09-29-2011, 07:35 AM
I noticed that my pocket computer (DROID) adjusted a few things for me in my previous post.

If you raise the elevation of the concrete wall and fill I think you will correct the scouring problem up the upper slab

If the problem persists... you can underpin the slab with a concrete step of sorts.
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DVS Hardscaper
09-29-2011, 06:14 PM
Hahaha that just made my night thanks Devious!!!

LOL - I'm glad someone got a good chuckle from that!


,

DVS Hardscaper
09-29-2011, 06:26 PM
The more I look at those pictures the more *fouled up* that property is.

The basement slider sould be where the double window are. This would have allowed the wall to be further away from the slider on the main level.

And that wall is dangerous. NO railing???? ARe there not any building codes in that town/county??

And why on earth is that wall so short??!!


2 weeks ago I looked at a retaining wall rebuild. A job we can handle. A small wall. a wall that would normally be about $15k. But this propert had so many freakin logistics to contend with that when its all said and done the estimate would probably come out to be about $25k. I think the owners do have the money and can handle paying $25k. But the more I thought about it and the more I thought about it - I decided that even though I'm confident we can do the work and do it well - we'll pass on it. There is no where to stage the materials. It will be a bear getting large delivery trucks onto the property. And many many other concerns. I never turn down work. I always price accordingly. But this particular job, I've decided is a job that I'll let some other contractor have at it.

I know you mentioned you are not interested in doing the work. But those people's back of their house is a cluster ****. Those people will never ever spend the money to have the issues in the pictures corrected correctly. If I lived in the area and was pricing the work for those people - I'd be wasting my time. Now, if they moved and the new owners called me - I bet you I'd make a sale.

,

calvinslawnservices
09-30-2011, 08:34 AM
Yea, I agree with you on that this house is ****ed up. I don't know how they got away with so many code violations and shortcuts. I think I will just let it be with the suggestions already made and let them figure out everything themselves.

Thank You everyone for your help,
Calvin

DVS Hardscaper
09-30-2011, 01:34 PM
'round here when a house is like that, they're usually owned by people from where Dell's call center is.

,
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calvinslawnservices
09-30-2011, 07:56 PM
'round here when a house is like that, they're usually owned by people from where Dell's call center is.

,
Posted via Mobile Device

Their not from there, they just built a house that fails multiple codes and still manage to live in it. :hammerhead: