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Interior Drainage Systems

When it comes to living in Washington, flooded basements can be a frustrating and costly headache. With many newer houses, interior drainage solutions are built into the construction plans to ensure your house is protected from the elements. However, for older houses that weren’t built with this consideration in mind, it’s unfortunately all too common to see groundwater seep through the foundation and wreak havoc on your basement. All Seasons Earthworks LLC has the qualifications and experience needed to install interior drainage systems in all of Snohomish County. Give us a call today to schedule a free consultation.

Interior Footing Drains

One of the most common ways water enters a basement is by seeping through the foundation into the basement.  An interior footing drain is a great way to address this problem and protect your basement and belongings from the elements.  They work very similarly to exterior French drains, with a few differences.  

  • An interior drainage system is protected from some of the challenges their exterior counterparts face, such as tree roots puncturing the pipes or soil clogging the drain holes.
  • Interior drainage systems are less intensive to install, as no excavation is required.
  • Due to being housed inside your basement, they can be installed year round.

Signs You May Need an Interior Drainage System

Every resident’s situation is different and requires a unique solution.  Some may benefit from exterior drainage systems, especially if the water is entering their basement through cracks in the basement walls.  For others, an interior solution is the better fit if groundwater entering through the foundation is the primary concern.  Some signs that an interior drainage system might be needed are:

  • Standing water in your basement.  While this seems like a no-brainer, it doesn’t have to be massive amounts of water and can be small amounts that are hard to notice.  Check the perimeter of your basement where the walls meet the floor with a flashlight and see if any moisture is present, as well as any cracks you may have in your basement floor.
  • Mold and/or musty odors.  Moisture left untreated in a basement is the ideal breeding ground for a variety of molds, many of which emit a musty smell.  If you’re noticing this in your basement, it’s a sign that it’s time to check for mold formations.
  • Water stains.  Water that pools in basements often leaves stains or discolorations behind, especially if there are minerals present in the groundwater.  They can start out small and can be easy to overlook, but are important to look for when inspecting your basement for signs of water damage.

How Interior Drainage Systems Are Installed

Before installing an interior drainage system, the first step is to check your city’s local codes for any stipulations that dictate how you must dispose of collected water from your basement, as they will inform the design of the drainage system.  Some cities also will require you to get a permit before drainage work can be performed, so it’s important to check that as well to avoid being fined.  

Once the planning stage is complete, space must be cleared for the drainage system.  Typically, this is accomplished by removing the concrete along the edges of your basement walls.  The extent of the water damage will dictate if the drainage system can be installed alongside one wall, or if it needs to extend to encircle the entire basement.  Once a small ditch has been cleared, gravel and landscaping fabric are laid in the space, followed by the footing drain: a pipe perforated on the underside to allow water to enter the pipe and be directed away from the area.  Once the installation is complete, concrete is poured to return the basement to its original state.

Sump Pump Options

Many interior drainage systems are installed alongside a sump pump to accomplish this and transport the water back to the surface.  In these situations, a small basin or pit is dug to hold the collected water from the drainage system.  A pump is then installed to remove the water from your basement and deposited in a designated area approved by the city.  

There are two main types of sump pumps: underground and above ground.  The first is a sump pump that is placed directly in the drainage basin.  These pumps are ideal when it comes to reducing the amount of noise they create, but typically have a shorter lifespan due to the constant exposure to water.  Above ground sump pumps can be loud and take up needed space in your basement, but are easier to maintain and tend to last longer due to not being submerged in the water basin.

When it comes to determining what kind of sump pump is best for your interior drainage system, there are several factors to consider.  City codes and statutes can apply to sump pumps as well and restrict what options are available to you.  The strength and power of the sump pump is important as well.  The farther away from your residence you are draining the collected water, the stronger the sump pump will need to be to accomplish this.  Lastly, the rate at which the basin fills with water affects how often the pump is activated each day, which will impact the lifespan of the sump pump.

Professional Interior Drainage System Installation

Installing an interior drainage system by yourself is not an easy task and, if done improperly, can lead to additional issues rather than a solution to your problem.  All Seasons Earthworks LLC is qualified to handle all aspects of this process for you and get your basement back in working order quickly and efficiently.  We service all of Snohomish County and have over 20 years of experience with both residential and commercial interior drainage systems.  We’d love to meet with you and discuss how we can help solve your drainage issues.  Give us a call at 425-263-2075 or send us a message online to get started.

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(425) 263-2075