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Dampness under house

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  1. #1
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    Default Dampness under house

    G'day all,
    just a general question about who I should call to assess the source of water under my house?
    I've got a damp patch/path under the rear of the house, which gets worse when we've had a lot of rain. I've had a plumber around and he has inspected the area and said there were no leaks. He thinks that it's water leeching out of the surrounding soil, but there's no where else that this is happening. He installed some additional down pipes as there weren't enough when the house was built and this hasn't fixed it.
    My neighbour suspects that there is a natural spring that is running across my back yard and under our houses as they have the same problem. I'm thinking that a long and deep rubble drain will help, but I think I'll need some professional advice before I start ripping up the back yard.
    Who would be the best person to call upon?
    Thanks for looking.

  2. #2
    Slow but rough Uncle Bob's Avatar
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    Good question. Maybe a water deviner to find the spring and a drain layer to get rid of it.

  3. #3
    NRB
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    We have a similar problem with ground water under our house,this water comes from some small creeks that have been filled when our estate was developed
    What I did was make a pit at the lowest point,lower than the ground level by about 200 mm,into this I put a plastic pot that was about 400 mm deep that I drilled lots of 25 mm holes into,around the outside of the pot I then filled outside of this with gravel so water could seep through, and then put a submersible pump into it
    This fixed our problem

  4. #4
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    Thanks Bob, I think water diviners are a bit of a dying breed though.
    NRB, you said you make the pit at the lowest point, is that at a point before it enters under your house, or is it set up another way?
    Our house is on a mainly flat block with a slope down towards the western side. The water is entering on the easterly side of the rear wall and flowing downhill to the west. So the lowest point of my block would be outside the western side of the house. I hope that made sense?

  5. #5
    NRB
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    Ours is under the house as this is where the water collects and pools,If your water pools outside I would look to put in some agy pipe and then direct the water into your storm water pipes
    Yes you do make sense
    Last edited by NRB; 14th Feb 2017 at 06:35 PM. Reason: More comments

  6. #6
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    You would want the ag line or other chosen method on the high side of your house to divert water around the house rather than bubbling up under it.
    worst case dig a hole in that wet patch and drain it from there.

  7. #7
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    Thanks NRB and Mudbrick,
    I think I'm going to have to dig a big trench to divert the water. The other problem is there's no underground storm water access at the rear of the house, so I'll have to find another way to collect or divert the water.
    Thanks again.

  8. #8
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    G'day again, sorry to reply to myself.
    After the recent heavy rain we've had, the amount of dampness has increased somewhat. It's looking like I need a rubble or ag drain in the back yard to divert the ground water, possibly into the storm water system.
    My question is who is the best person to do the work? Does it need to be a plumber as there'll be a storm water connection, a landscaper, or somebody else?
    Thanks for looking.

  9. #9
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    My question is who is the best person to do the work? Does it need to be a plumber as there'll be a storm water connection, a landscaper, or somebody else?
    Hi Lovey, I have the same problem here in Sydney. My house slopes the same way as you have described yours. My question, who did you get to inspect the cause? Did you find a plumber and what advice did you get?
    I know I have drainage issue which is causing damp subfloor also causing timber cracks and wall cracking due to foundation being affected.
    How did you go about fixing your problem?
    Thanks for reading this if you are still logging into the renovator forum

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uncle Bob View Post
    Good question. Maybe a water diviner to find the spring and a drain layer to get rid of it.
    DIY Water divining: get 2 x bronze welding rods. make a right angle bend about 30mm longer than your palm span. Hold both rods so the long end is horizontal and balanced so the far ends are a little closer than your hands. now walk forward controlling the rods to stay at this angle by rotating your wrists. Test by walking over the garden hose filled with water. I use this to locate water pipes and electrical cables underground. Let me know hay you go, we may have more diviners than you think.

    Good luck and fair winds.
    Growing old is compulsory, growing up is not.
    http://www.wet-seal.com.au/waterproofing/locations.html

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lovey View Post
    Thanks Bob, I think water diviners are a bit of a dying breed though.
    NRB, you said you make the pit at the lowest point, is that at a point before it enters under your house, or is it set up another way?
    Our house is on a mainly flat block with a slope down towards the western side. The water is entering on the easterly side of the rear wall and flowing downhill to the west. So the lowest point of my block would be outside the western side of the house. I hope that made sense?
    This means you need an aggie drain across the east side deep enough to be below the water point, then drain it either to a storm drain which has no other connections and is lower than the water point, or let it run out in the western yard as long as the outlet is lower than the water point you are having trouble with.

    Obviously the plumber you got in had no idea of underground water, or did not like drainage, so ask the question of those you talk to if they understand underground water.

    You don't need a water diviner to find water you know is already there.

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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by whitesands View Post
    Hi Lovey, I have the same problem here in Sydney. My house slopes the same way as you have described yours. My question, who did you get to inspect the cause? Did you find a plumber and what advice did you get?
    I know I have drainage issue which is causing damp subfloor also causing timber cracks and wall cracking due to foundation being affected.
    How did you go about fixing your problem?
    Thanks for reading this if you are still logging into the renovator forum
    Zombie thread revival alert.
    Sorry for the late reply Whitesands, I had completely forgotten about this thread.
    I ended up finding the cause of the dampness, which turned out to be an underground spring/water source. There are a few telltale signs which I picked up at various times, namely seeing the water trail underneath the rear deck and a section of the pathway has sunk a little bit in line with this water trail. I've got a mate that runs an earthmoving business and I'm going to get him to come around and dig some trenches and install some drainage. I'll put some pics up when I get it done.

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