Why is There Water Around My Foundation Wall?

August 22, 2023

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Far too many homeowners find themselves asking, why is there water around my foundation wall? This is a vital question to find out, as water risks costly foundation damage. Also, once it penetrates your home’s interior, it can mean pests, mold, and unpleasant odors.

Any of the following can mean water around a foundation wall:

  • Poor drainage
  • Gutter and downspout issues
  • Poor grading
  • Foundation cracks
  • Sump pump problems
  • Overly heavy rainfall

To find out more about each of these issues, keep reading! Also, a foundation repair contractor near you can advise on how to best address these problems on your property. They can also note if it’s time for repairs and waterproofing, to protect your property against future damage.

why is there water around my foundation wall

Why Is There Water Around My Foundation Wall, In Detail

Never ignore water around your basement foundation walls. Pooling water often indicates problems with drainage, waterproofing, or grading. Here are some common reasons why you might find water around your foundation wall:

Poor Drainage

Improper drainage is a common cause of water accumulation around the foundation. In some cases, you might need to invest in a French drain system or other buried system. These collect pooling water and direct it away from a structure and foundation walls.

Gutter Issues

Clogged, damaged, or improperly positioned gutters may not effectively channel rainwater away from your home. Overflowing or misdirected gutter water can contribute to water accumulation around the foundation.

Additionally, downspouts that discharge water too close to the foundation can lead to water pooling. Make sure your downspouts extend several feet away from the house to direct water away from the foundation. Invest in downspout extenders and directors if needed.

Poor Grading

The slope of the ground around your home should direct water away from the foundation. If the grading is uneven or slopes toward the foundation, it can lead to water accumulation. A landscaping engineer or foundation repair contractor can check your property’s grade. They can also recommend solutions for poorly graded soil.

Foundation Cracks

Cracks or gaps in your foundation walls can allow water to seep through. Once this happens, it can then accumulate around the base of your home. The longer you ignore cracks and gaps, the worse they become. Also, as they get bigger over time, they allow even more water accumulation and seepage!

Sump Pump Issues

If you have a sump pump system in your basement or crawl space, ensure that it’s functioning properly. Sump pumps collect water in a pit and then pump it elsewhere. If the pump fails, this allows water to accumulate.

Heavy Rainfall

Extended periods of heavy rainfall or storms can lead to water accumulation around the foundation. It’s easy to think that this water just drains away or that soil absorbs it. However, if your property’s drainage system is not adequate, this can mean water accumulation around your foundation.

basement windows that need waterproofing

Will Water Next to a House Foundation Cause a Problem?

When researching “why is there water around my foundation wall,” you’ll see that water accumulation next to a house foundation can risk problems. These include structural damage, basement leaks, mold growth, and more. Consider these in more detail:

  • Prolonged exposure to water can weaken the foundation over time. Water can infiltrate cracks or gaps in the foundation, causing it to deteriorate and potentially leading to structural instability.
  • Water can seep into basements and crawlspaces through cracks, gaps, or porous foundation materials. This can result in moisture issues, dampness, and water damage to the interior of your home.
  • Excess moisture around the foundation can create a conducive environment for mold and mildew growth. Mold can spread to the interior of your home, causing health issues and risking costly damage.
  • Saturated soil can become compacted and weakened. This can lead to soil settlement, foundation settling, and uneven floors in the home.
  • Clay-rich soils can expand when they absorb water and shrink when they dry out. This cycle of expansion and contraction can exert pressure on the foundation, leading to cracks and movement.
  • Damp conditions near the foundation can attract pests such as termites. These are drawn to moisture and can cause significant damage.
  • Water pooling around the foundation can erode the soil over time. This can undermine the support provided by the soil and risk foundation settlement.
  • In colder climates, water near the foundation can freeze and expand during winter, leading to frost heave and potential damage to the foundation.

How Do I Stop Water Pooling Around My Foundation?

To prevent water pooling around your foundation, implement effective drainage solutions. These can help redirect water away from your home. Note a few common solutions for stopping water from pooling around a foundation:

  • Ensure that the ground around your home slopes away from the foundation. This will help naturally guide water away from the house.
  • Clean your gutters and downspouts regularly to prevent clogs. Make sure downspouts extend at least 3 to 4 feet away from the foundation.
  • Swales are shallow depressions in the landscape that direct water along a gentle slope. Berms are raised mounds of soil. Both can be strategically placed to divert water away from your foundation.
  • If you have walkways or patios adjacent to your foundation, consider using permeable pavers or gravel. These allow water to infiltrate the ground rather than pooling on the surface.
  • Choose plants and landscaping features that can help manage water. For example, rain gardens are designed to collect and absorb rainwater, helping to prevent water from pooling.
  • A foundation drainage system, often called a footing drain, can be installed around the perimeter of your foundation. It collects water that accumulates around the foundation and directs it away.
  • Seal any visible cracks in your foundation to prevent water from infiltrating and pooling inside.

Lastly, note that a foundation repair contractor might suggest more than one solution for your property. For instance, your might need better gutters and grading on your property. These ensure maximum protection against water around my foundation wall.

A Word From Our Pros

Better Foundation Repair Corpus Christi is happy to explain “water around my foundation wall” causes and solutions. If you’re in the area, call our Corpus Christi foundation repair contractors for more assistance. We can schedule a FREE foundation repair price quote at your earliest convenience.


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