Monday, August 20, 2007

Flooding???

We finished the three week marathon that was Great Lakes, Pennsic and GenCon. It was brutal at times but we made it and I am glad we did all three events. So what was my reward when I arrived home? A mysterious water leak in my house.

There is a trench or pipe that runs under the floors of the house. It's basically an air duct for the air conditioner on the roof. When I fired up the AC today to cool down the muggy house I heard a strange gurgling. It seemed to come from everywhere but we quickly narrowed it down to the pipe in the floor. It was completely filled with water. I tried sucking the water out with my shop vac but after thirty trips outside to dump the water I was making no headway. I went to the hardware store and rented a sump pump, but it was the kind you sit in a large flooded area, it didn't fit in the pipe. Back to the hardware store. This time we got a pump used for draining pools. We hooked it up and an hour later we'd emptied more of the water, but not all of it. I stopped and waited a few hours and the pipe has partially refilled. Of course this process made a huge mess in the kitchen where we were working.

I have no freaking clue where the water is coming from. We spent gobs of money to prevent just this sort of thing. There is a fucking rubber sheet covering the ENTIRE roof. The best we can figure is that the huge amount of rainfall has caused water to build up and leak through some small gap in our defenses. And water will just keep moving until it finds a way out. Maybe the water is from the side yard, maybe the roof, maybe a drainage line from the garage is broken. I have no easy way to know or find out. This is the pain in the ass of non-standard home construction. We are constantly trying to figure out how the place was built, why they did things the way they did, and how they fucked it up.

With the rain (hopefully) over I'm hoping the water leak will stop. If it doesn't then there's some kind of water line leak, which would be so bad as to be unimaginable. So far I don't believe this to be the case as running water lines make noise and I don't hear anything yet. What a great treat to come home to.

9 comments:

Ed said...

Craptastic - this seriously sucks. I hope that it has not damaged any of your walls & decor. Let me know if you need a hand this weekend.

Patrick said...

Have you tried the county building department to see the permits/plans for the house construction? There may not be much there, but you never know. Maybe an inspector raised questions and there's a paper trail.

Anonymous said...

Great suggestion Patrick.

Steve said...

Alas, there are no plans that we know of with the city. Out here, you can basically just build stuff. All we have are pics of the house during construction.

The water level is lower, but not completely gone. I'll keep using the pump till the water is gone. Then maybe call in a basement specialist.

Kelley said...

Ah, I'm feeling your pain Steve! I just finished spending over $10,000 to get my hardwoods refinished, replace all the windows and doors, build a closet, paint the house, etc. Just to find out the closet I built redirected the air flow of an air conditioning duct that made the air go out on the floor and have water condense. Now the hardwoods that are over 100 years old are dark, discolored, and warping. I will probably have to get that room re-done. Had to drop another $200 on a de-humidifier and have to have it run for 3-4 weeks until we can even know how permanent the damage is. Then pay to re-route the air ducts, check for repairs in the duct work, and insulate under the house, ARGH! It is times like this I fantasize about a nice little fairly modern, condo with no yard and a maintenance crew to take care of the shit.

Thinking of you and sending patience and good house vibes your way :-)

Hang in there.

Anonymous said...

Good God, man... that sucks ass. - Jackal

Anonymous said...

It appears you need more Yang and less Yin. Have you tried doing something very manly? Or maybe something with fire?

Steve said...

After about six pumping sessions (that sounds dirty now, doesn't it?) the water is mostly gone from the pipes. They still need to be cleaned and dried but running the AC should help. I thing that one source of the water was out side yard, which I recently noticed was slightly higher that our floor. The huge amounts of water must have built up along the side wall of the house and found some small crack in the pipe. I don;t think this will happen often but I will need to keep my eyes on this and consider some kind of drainage system for freakish weather like this.

Viktor said...

Sheesh... That sux...

What if you installed a smallish catch-basin into this duct work that's filling and installed a small sump-pump with a line leading outside. Then if it ever happened again, the water would collect in the basin, and the pump would, - well.. - pump it out. Sounds good from where I'm standing... ;)
Ennyhow, - just an idea.
Good luck!