If you have invested in crawlspace waterproofing or are concerned with the state of your foundation, you probably already know that an effective roof drainage system is vital for keeping water away from your foundation. It is therefore important to ensure that your downspouts drain as far away from the foundation as possible.
If your downspouts are short (i.e. drain less than eight feet away from the foundation), you should have them extended. There are various ways of doing this. One of the most popular is having them extended underground. When installed properly, these systems are very effective at draining water and keeping the foundation safe.
Unfortunately, many homeowners believe that the job of installing underground extensions can be done by anybody, even themselves. They may ask their landscaper or general contractor to do it. They may even decide to do it on their own. This often results in various mistakes that can prove costly to recover from. These include:
- Use of the wrong materials
It is important to use durable materials that will guide water effectively. You will need to consider several factors in your choice of material including exposure to freezing temperatures and forces from the surrounding soil.
A professional crawlspace waterproofing contractor will ensure the best quality in materials is used for the extension to give you great results for the long term.
- Using the wrong pitch
The underground extensions must be installed at just the right pitch to achieve effective drainage of water. If the pitch is not right, you will experience several problems with the extensions including backflow of water. If water accumulates in the pipe, it can cause the pipes to break during winter when it freezes and expands. This will lead to leaking of water and an increase in hydrostatic pressure in the soil.
- Connecting the extension directly to the downspouts
When installing an underground downspout extension, it is important to include a debris filter. This will help to keep the underground extension clean and free of debris that can cause clogging. The debris filter makes the system easy to maintain.
Connecting the extension directly to the downspouts will result in clogging. You would have to dig up your extension in order to clean it and keep it clear.
- Installing a short extension
The extension should carry water at least eight feet away from the foundation. If you install just a few feet of pipe, you will end up with even more water damage in your crawlspace.