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Foundation leaking into bedroom

kyrral's picture

I have a flat house on a flat lot. My middle bedroom began leaking water thru the baseboard. We have had a huge amount of rainfall in So Cal recently. I saw some mild water pooling outside the window and dug asmall trench to channel some away. I also put up a gutter drain along the roof. Should I caulk the outside with some Henrys? Also I have a large bird of paradise outside the window which may be causing problems (roots taking up draining space? Suggestions other that hoping for another drought.

The first thing that come to (post #214563, reply #1 of 4)

The first thing that come to my mind is that the finish grade is above / higher than the finish floor.  Have you checked to see if this is the case. The finished grade should be a minimum of 6 to 8 inchs below the finish floor. Can you see any of the concrete between the finish siding and the top of the soil?

Does the yard in the area generally slope away from the house or does it slopes toward the house?  It should slope away. There could be other causes but based on your description it seem unlikley.


However, having the finish (post #214563, reply #2 of 4)

However, having the finish grade below the floor conflicts with having the yard slope away from the house.

Probably the best bailing-wire fix is to glop up the outside, digging down to at least 8 inches, maybe 12 below the inside floor.  Then ditch/slope the exterior as well as you can manage.

Luckily it only rains in California once every 5-10 years.

Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

Dan. Section R400 of the IRC (post #214563, reply #3 of 4)

Dan. Section R400 of the IRC discusses the drainage plane for structures built below ascending slopes.  Since not all houses are built on the top of a hill, some area of the structure will always be lower than adjacent grade. In those situations, the finish grading shall provide a slope away from the foundation.

In our part of the country, that slope (drop) shall be a minimun of 6" for a distance of 10' or to the adjacent prop. line if less than10".  I simply ask the question to get a better understanding of the op's problem.  It is possible to have 6' of the foundation visible and the finish grade sloping away from the structure.

In the op's existing situarion, his simplest solution may be to dig a 6' deep ditch sloping to a lower point as you suggest.

Is your house concrete block? (post #214563, reply #4 of 4)

Is your house concrete block? If so the trouble spot is probably the joint between the foundation/floor and the blocks. I've had success using a grinder to clean out that joint for 3 or 4 feet around the leak and packing grout in.

Florida Licensed Building Contractor, 50 years experience in commercial remodeling, new homes, home remodeling and repairs and all types building maintenance.