[hackerspaces] Wet hackerspace walls, what do you do?

B F bakmthiscl at gmail.com
Sun Nov 10 13:22:07 CET 2013

As Philip has already noted, you need to know where the water is coming

The most common cause of water leakage into a basement is improper drainage
away from the building.  Most usually, rainwater drains from roof to
foundation and then sinks STRAIGHT down into the ground.  the fix is to
build up the soil around the foundation so that rainwater runs away from
the building.  Add 6" (15 cm) adjacent to each wall, tapering to zero at
about 3' (1 m).  The difference this can make is phenomenal.

Of course, this won't help if the groundwater really is high.  Why do you
think the groundwater is high?  Could you get away with boring a few "fence
post" holes (maybe 6" = 15 cm in diameter) at a distance of 10'-20' (3 m -
7 m) from the outside of the building?  The idea of that would be to
actually determine the groundwater level?

A last resort is to use sump pumps.  You put one or more sumps two feet (60
cm) deep in the basement, with appropriate liners, such as porous pipe,
then put a sump pump in the bottom, routing the output outside, well away
from the wall.  (It may be illegal to route the output into a sewer).  The
idea is to lower the local water table enough that water doesn't come into
the basement.  Sumps can also be installed outside the building, and
sometimes these don't need pumps but can be made to drain by gravity --
depending on the terrain.

On Thu, Nov 7, 2013 at 10:26 AM, riot <riot at c-base.org> wrote:

> On 07.11.2013 15:14, Jesse Krembs wrote:
> > I think we'll need a little more information. What are the walls made
> > of? Why are they wet? Was there flooding? Is there a ongoing issue?
> >
> Good point :)
> The walls (basement) are late 19th century bricks-and-mortar, humidity
> is probably coming in from above (rain) and the outside, probably a lot
> of it coming in from under the wall, as the groundwater is pretty high.
> I have already partly dismissed:
> * steel water barrier inlets (probably too expensive, the house is old
> and around 22m high, pretty (steely) industrial..)
> * we can't really excavate the outside to fix from there. Neighbours..
> *sigh*
> So we have to act on the inside; I'm thinking of some plastic sealing or
> similar, but i'm worried about the wall-substance, too.
> Cheers,
> riot
> _______________________________________________
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