All Downspouts MUST Discharge Water Away From The Foundation Wall

By
Home Inspector with Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC

All downspouts MUST discharge water away from the foundation wall.  As they say, denial isn't just a river in Egypt.

Anything else simply sets the house up for disaster over time.

This is the downspout on the front corner of the house.

This house is situated on a hill, with the front foundation wall completely buried.

This has been discharging against the foundation for some time.

Someone even put a plastic cap on the end, apparently to dress it up!

And a cute piece of slate to "divert" the water downward.

Cute...

Notice the hole being dug into the soil.  Somewhat hard to see, it is there!

Here is the corner beneath that fine downspout!

It had rained the night before this inspection. 

And not hard!

But, with about 800 square feet of roof surface draining down one downspout, and against the foundation wall, it will find its way in if it can.

And to get inside the house, water needs about one billionth of an inch of a crack.

In addition to coming into the house, this is what continued water pressure against a foundation will do.

That is a double, horizontal foundation crack.

That's a foundation's version of a double wide!

Pressure from outside, combined with clay soil expansion, and a lot of time to work with, will wreak havoc on a masonry foundation wall.

To the right of those cracks there is a finished, drywalled wall.

But it is certain that cracking continues behind that drywall.

And the entirety of the wall measured over 30% moisture, indicating active moisture intrusion.

My kingdom for a downspout extension!

Perhaps a tad late at this stage...

My recommendation:  it is easy to extend downspouts away from the house.  And far easier than any damage that follows if they do not!

 

 

Posted by

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560

www.jaymarinspect.com


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Re-Bloggged 3 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Lori Cain 03/03/2012 08:43 AM
  2. Bonnie Vaughan 03/04/2012 05:55 AM
  3. Gene Riemenschneider 03/05/2012 08:38 PM
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Comments 65 New Comment

Rainmaker
1,167,784
Jay Markanich
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC

 That is one wet spot Steven!  I have a million of those.  Here's another one, where it appears a teensi bit of water is getting under th basement carpet!  Yep, downspout problem!

Bob - not sure what gutters have to do with ice and snow!  Rain and water is the issue!  But I think you said that in your last line!

March 05, 2012 05:42 PM
Rainmaker
1,162,113
Gene Riemenschneider
Turning Houses into Homes
Home Point Real Estate

I see stuff like this attached to flexible pipes and taken away from the house a lot.

March 05, 2012 08:05 PM
Rainmaker
1,167,784
Jay Markanich
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC

I do too Gene, and while that is okay, I prefer to see something harder and/or more permanent.

March 06, 2012 02:18 AM
Rainmaker
256,173
Coral Gundlach
Century 21 Redwood Realty, Arlington Virginia

Those are some scary pictures there Jay!   Something so simple, yet so many forget.  Thank goodness we have you to remind us!

March 06, 2012 06:22 PM
Rainmaker
1,167,784
Jay Markanich
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC

This was a scary house all over Coral!  And provided lots of blog fodder and some fun.  Fortunately my clients didn't go with it.  Their puny fee to me saved them many tens of thousands in worry and expense.

Thanks for stopping by ... Carol.

March 07, 2012 03:00 AM
Rainmaker
1,167,784

Jay Markanich

Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia
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