Fixing Old Homes Leaking Basement Walls

Meg and I (Team Howlett) had the pleasure to help a wonderful client sell her house in southern Tippecanoe County.  Beautiful country farm house with charm, acreage views, and lots of potential.  Of course, there are issues with older farm houses.

One of the biggest issues with older homes built with block foundations is weeping basements.  The appraisal identified an issue with the weeping foundation.  Sellers had a structural engineer review the basement.  He noted that the foundation was structurally sound but soil grading and downspout drainage near the weepage would reduce the water in the basement.

With the review from the home inspector, it was noted there were low spots next to the house and the downspout discharged right next to the house.  These contributed to the weepage in the basement.  It was an appraisal issue so it needed to be addressed.

The seller agreed to address the drainage / water weepage issues.  Now, here comes the issue.  How to address?  The engineer identified 2 issues: lot level and downspout drainage.  Sellers agreed to address the issue.  A big issue.  No.  This is a DIY project.

Need to clear vegetation and underbrush from any area to be graded.

Grading the dirt away from the house is a relatively easy process.  In this project, we used Wrede Rocks.  They have an online tool to calculate the dirt needed.  Then, they have a rental truck with dump back for easy delivery.

All you need to do is grade the dirt so it slopes 3-4′ away from the low spots.  I used a 4′ plastic level to ensure the grade sloped away.  Recommend tamping down or walking over the dirt to ensure the ground is sloping away.

Now, add the downspout extensions to move water away from the house.  With the grading and downspout extensions, you will have addressed most of any old house basement water weepage issues.  Do it now.

We added a basement casement to reduce any water penetration.  Approx cost $20.

Repairs were done by the seller, the appraisal issues were addressed and we closed. Done!  If you would like free consultation about any homeowner issues, please call Meg at 765-414-6531.

Meg Howlett and Eric Howlett, Realtors, with 2018 Angies List Super Service Award

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