Water in the Crawl Space? It May Be Rain Water, and We Can Help! : Plumbing and Drain Cleaning Blog

Water in the Crawl Space? It May Be Rain Water, and We Can Help!

by Aardvark Rooter on 05/11/18

We are a “rooter” company and our main desire is to help the homeowner with their sewer problem: sewer  back-ups, roots in the line, aging pipes, offset pipes, out-dated pipes, and more. Here in the Pacific Northwest we have witnessed record rainfall in the last year and a half, and it’s doing it again at the start of this year. We are getting calls from people with crawl space water accumulation. But, you’ll be interested to know that this can come from a number of sources and for a variety of reasons. We can help with all of them, as you will see, but there is a new type of issue that we must address.

Many customers have been calling us about water accumulation in their crawl space areas under the house, and when we ask if their water bills have gone up, the answer is “No”----that means no leaks from their water supply system. Next, we check on their drain and usually find out that it’s not sewage in the crawl space, so this fluid is not coming from the drains in the crawl space or under the house, which we can tell by observation.

So, what is this mystery problem? We are finding more and more failures in the home rain/storm system.

Let’s break down the areas where water flows outside the home when rainwater comes down:

1) Gutters – If gutters are in good condition, they should be cleaned and all debris removed 1-2 times per year.

2) Downspouts – These are the vertical drains taking water and debris from the gutter down to the ground. When gutters are cleaned, downspouts should be cleaned and cleared too. Some homes have downspouts that drain into the yard, which are easy to get cleared at cleaning time. If you live near a lot of old growth trees, you may have to clear the downspouts more often (Side Note: always make sure that drained water goes away from the home’s foundation).

3) Perimeter Drains – These drains are buried. They are usually tied into the downspouts at corners around the home. They usually accept water from your roof/gutter/downspout system. The runoff is usually directed to a city storm system, a culvert, or other runoff area not affecting your neighbors. If annual cleaning is neglected (cleaning them should be done at the same time as your gutters and downspouts), the perimeter drains can back up from all of the runoff. It is a good idea to have 1 or 2 cleanout connections so that you can get to these lines and clear them out too. These can be done by a company like ours with cabling or jetting capabilities.

If the perimeter drains are taking on water, it’s because they are backed up, then the excess rain water will flow to your yard or possibly into your crawl space. In order to fix this, you can get a drain cleaning company like Aardvark Rooter to help. If the perimeter drains are solid pipe ABS or PVC we can cable the line, and if they are corrugated ABS, then you are going to need a hydro-jetting service, which we can also do. Once you get those perimeter pipes clear and clean, the water will flow correctly and you’ll have your exterior storm drain system keeping your home safe from water damages again.

The main idea here is that your water and storm drainage system can be treated JUST LIKE your sewer line and sewage system in many cases. In fact, sometimes these pipes break or collapse, and must be repaired or replaced so that you don’t have water seeping and collecting in your crawl space. To find the exact problem, we actually would use our sewer line camera technology to locate and understand the nature of your issue before actually digging it up.

If a new pipe must be installed, we’d always recommend a solid pipe with drain holes throughout, plus a filter sock over it, and to have it buried in a rock bed, top and bottom. This will accept all the water from roof, gutter, downspouts, and even the groundwater, pushing it all away and not allowing any into your home’s crawlspace.

The bottom line is this: Rooter/drain cleaning companies like Aardvark Rooter have all the tools to work with your drainage system and to help figure out how to keep you water flowing, just like we do with your drain lines. If you’ve got water collecting in your crawl space or any other symptoms of a backed up storm drain system, please call us and allow us to diagnose your problem and provide an affordable solution.

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