House Floating Away? grading & drainage & soil situation


Old 09-04-13, 06:12 PM
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House Floating Away? grading & drainage & soil situation

hi folks, side of house - condo w/ HOA - differing opinion on fix (know this masonry forum, but it seemed closest category w/ grading, etc. - if wrong to post, just tell me)

one 12-in drain (not maintained) - bad soil erosion (heavy clay, no amendment, no plants) - original site design changed natural drainage pattern, making a containment basin on the side of the house (arrow, last photo)

PLAN # 1 :

HOA want to grade swale (makes sense) - enlarge existing drain to 18-in + add 2nd drain at other end, close to you in photo (doesn't make sense) - no immediate plan to amend & stabilize soil (even though drain failed 3 years ago + this year - due to severe erosion completely blocking drain)

PLAN # 2:

gutter expert + civil engineer & me say: correct poor original site design by restoring natural drainage pattern (correct dam in rear) - grade swale for that purpose (not 2 contained drainage basins) - get rid of drain (maintenance/performance nightmare) - fix bad soil & plant (soil stabilization and make it look good)

ANY OPINIONS? (am I wrong to dispute their plan #1 above)

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Old 09-05-13, 03:09 AM
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Welcome to the forums!

I assume the HOA wants to go with option #1 because it's cheaper. Do you have an official written report from the engineer? I suspect it will take some documentation, maybe more to convince the HOA to spend the extra money to do it right.
Old 09-05-13, 03:40 AM
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What might make sense is for you to first clear out that drain pit yourself.
Can't tell how deep it is but It should only take a few minutes with either a gloved hand or some type of make-shift scoop.
If you haven't checked the soil may only go a very short way down the drain line which also may be easily cleaned out.........a wet/dry vac may help.
After cleaning a garden hose would be able to tell you if there is any flow at all and mayne help flush it out......maybe even a fire hose connected to a hydrant would help.

A key to preventing the drain from filling with dirt is if you could make some adjustments to the grading around the house so that grass would grow, the grass would greatly reduce the amount of dirt that enters the drain.
Old 09-05-13, 04:22 PM
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Where I come from, a private entity connecting a hose to a fire hydrant (without authorization and/or payment of a fee) always results in a very stiff fine.

Get the HOA to foot the bill to pay a contractor with a water truck/high-pressure pump to flush the line out properly. You won't do much good trying to reach in by hand, as your arms aren't long enough.
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