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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Bridgewater, NJ
    Posts
    3

    Default Leaky fireplace cleanout pit

    The previous owner routed a downspout into a treewell so when it rained, the treewell filled with about 150-200 gallons of water. That water worked it's way into the mortar joints of the fireplace chimney about 20' away and then into the cleanout pit which has it's access door in the basement. Now the rain fills the pit and spills out the door. Fortunately, we have a floating slab basement so I can divert much of the spillage into the 1" trench but the underfloor area saturates eventually. When it does, the water then spills onto the basement floor. One idea I had was to install a 1-1 1/2" PVC pipe into the cement block wall fireplace chimney and route it to a nearby sump pump well. Is there any other way to seal the below ground level mortar joints besides digging down outside and sealing them externally with mortar? Any ideas would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    7,762

    Default Re: Leaky fireplace cleanout pit

    Most logical solution: do whatever it takes to divert the water coming down the gutter spout away from the treewell and house foundation.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Bridgewater, NJ
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Leaky fireplace cleanout pit

    dj1, thank you for responding. I left out the part of the story that told you the tree was felled and the treewell filled. The downspout now connects to underground PVC piping which now carries all rainwater to a nearby storm drain. However, the mortar joint leaks still exist and allow water in during heavy rains. If I can't repair the joints, then my next solution is to simply carry away the water. Any other thoughts?

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