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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Chicago, IL

    Default Water drainage when sill plate is at grade?

    Our house foundation and sill plate are at ground level. Obviously, this is unfortunate. The back yard slope slightly towards the house. When it rains hard, the rain water pools up against the foundation until it is about 3" deep and finally can leak between the sill and the foundation. Thankfully, we have a crawl space and no basement, so there is no interior damage. What can I do to solve this problem? I can't add more soil near the foundation as the sill is already at ground level. Here is a picture of the back of the house.

    Thanks in advance,

    Rick Waller

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007

    Default Re: Water drainage when sill plate is at grade?


    Being born and raised in New England we have hundreds if not thousands of colonial homes built right on the ground, exactly like yours.

    Unfortunately, this type of construction is vulnerable to serious water damage.

    The first thing that goes is the sills.

    Unless grandfathered in due to age of the buiding, municipal codes now require 18' of stone, mortar, or masonry between the sil and the ground.

    Ice, snow & winter weather are especially destructive to this type of house.

    Is there any damage to the sills now???

    Remedies are usually very expensive.

    One possibility would be to re-scape the top 12" of soil around the house with earth moving equipment.

    It looks like you have some room to do this in the back, so the soil can be pitched away from the house.

    Any excess could be trucked away, or sold as topsoil.

    Draintiles could be then installed to direct the water to a lower point on your property.

    Much costlier methods would be to erect a concrete apron aroundthe house with steel grating & drain tiles.

    An extremely expensive solution would be to have the house jacked up & a new foundation installed.

    Why not consult with local landscapers, foundation contractors, or even a civil engineer (See Yellow Pages for these listings), and get several opinions and cost quotes.

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