French Drains Vs Dry Well for Protecting Against Foundation Wall Cracks Danbury, CT
If you understand anything about foundation wall cracks, you will know that these cracks are often the result of drainage issues. Cracks in foundation walls can form as a result of high hydrostatic pressure acting against the foundation walls. The foundation walls bow inward and begin to crack.
The increase in hydrostatic pressure in the soil is often a result of poor drainage of runoff water from rain or melting snow. Foundations must therefore be fitted with a drainage system to ease the hydrostatic pressure acting against the foundation. Below we discuss two types of drainage solutions you can use for your foundation.
These drains are designed to protect the foundation from damage as a result of groundwater. Groundwater levels can rise as a result of increased absorption of water by the soil, e.g. after a rainstorm. When this happens, water can seep into the foundation. It can also increase the hydrostatic pressure acting against the foundation and cause the foundation walls or floor to shift resulting in foundation wall cracks.
French drains help to redirect groundwater away from the foundation. They consist of a perforated pipe that is placed in a trench that is dug at the footing of the foundation. Gravel and rock are filled around the perforated pipe. This allows water in the surrounding soil to seep into the perforated pipe. The water that collects in the pipe is guided away from the foundation and deposited into a well. When the well is full the water is pumped out by a sump pump.
This type of drainage solution offers various benefits for foundations including:
1. Redirecting water away from the foundation and thus reducing the risk of water damage and other moisture-related issues
2. The ability to install them around the perimeter of the foundation wall or in specific areas where water accumulates. They can be installed in a finished basement with minimal damage to your investment.
3. They are a cost-effective solution and are straightforward to maintain.
A dry well is another drainage solution that is designed to prevent foundation wall cracks. As the name suggests, the drainage solution consists of a concrete galley that is buried in the ground. It is similar to a well-in structure. They are designed to absorb excess water from a variety of sources including downspouts and surface runoff water. A large pit is dug into the ground and filled with rock or gravel to allow water from the surrounding soil to infiltrate the well. An experienced technician will inspect your property and determine the best location to install the drywall.
Dry wells offer many benefits including:
1. Managing large volumes of surface water from rain runoff and other sources
2. Protecting the landscape from soil erosion or pooling of water
3. They can be used in combination with other drainage solutions or as a standalone solution.
Both dry wells and French drains are beneficial for preventing foundation wall cracks. It is not a question of which is better than the other but rather how to combine the solutions to achieve the best results.