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Heavy rain - frozen ground, Heavy rain - thawed ground...which is worse?

Heavy rain - frozen ground, Heavy rain - thawed ground...which is worse?


Old 01-18-15, 06:08 PM
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Heavy rain - frozen ground, Heavy rain - thawed ground...which is worse?

Hi everyone,
I just posted a thread about water leaking into the basement of my new (to me) home. So my question is as the title states.......

In terms of water leaking into a basement, what is worse for allowing water in? frozen ground with very heavy rain, or thawed ground with very heavy rain?
Today we had heavy rain with frozen ground, and I got water in the basement. If the ground was thawed, would the water seepage be better or worse?

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Old 01-18-15, 06:11 PM
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Water will travel to the source of least resistance, whether it is frozen or thawed. Right up next to the house is probably somewhat thawed anyway. Landscaping, moving water from the foundation is the only way to make sure it doesn't accumulate.
Old 01-19-15, 03:20 AM
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Heavy rain over frozen ground won't suck into the ground like it would if the ground was thawed. If it leaks with frozen ground but not when it's thawed I'd think the leak is higher up on the foundation. As Larry said, the more you can do to encourage the water to flow away from the house the better.
Old 01-19-15, 11:47 AM
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I agree with chandler. We know that water naturally follows the path of least resistance and that is especially true when the ground is water logged to begin with. When temps drop well below freezing for days and weeks, Ice in the ground will block together, in your open yard away from your house first. Then you get a heavy soaking rain, and those large areas of underground ice force rainwater to go elsewhere because the ground is unpenetrable except areas that didnt freeze hard like along side your house. I think the hydrostatic pressure against basement walls is even more intense in a case like this, then if the surrounding ground was thawed out. I watched my own yard puddle deeply during that storm too wondering if Id have basement water, but I wound up fine. There is more to it then just sloping your yard away from the house. If you have close neighbors homes, lots if big yard trees on a small property,or no storm drains on your street, those are factors to consider too.

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