Most people don’t give much thought to the water piped into their home. They give even less thought to the water draining out of their homes. Water comes in, usually via the water and sewer system of the local municipality. We then drink it, clean ourselves or our clothes and other things with it. Then we wash it down the drain. That drain might be connected to a shower, toilet, sink, dishwasher, or clothes washer. Or it might be an open drain installed in the floor. Most us don’t give much thought to where that water goes once it leaves our view. As the old saying goes,“Out of sight, out of mind.” Until there’s a drainage problem.
Many drainage repair issues are beyond the scope of the do-it-yourself person. But it’s good to know a little something about how your home’s drainage system works. It’s also good to have a little knowledge about potential problems beneath the surface and who to call for help. Groundhog Excavating is at your service if there’s any kind of drainage problem or suspected problem. Groundhog has vast experience in helping homeowners and businesses with drainage and drainage issues in Langley, BC, and throughout the Lower Mainland.
Your Home’s Drainage System
Let’s look at the big picture first. Each plumbing fixture in your home has its own drain line. Each of the drain lines ties into a larger main line. This line takes the water out of your house and into the sewer system of the municipality in which you live— whether it’s the City of Langley, the Township of Langley, or almost anywhere else in British Columbia.
The most important component of a drain is the trap. Drain traps are part of the Drain-waste-vent system (DWV) of pipes that carry waste and water out of the house. It’s also a component that ‘s taken for granted– until there’s a smell. Smells are contained by traps that hold the drained water inside, preventing sewer gasses from coming back into the house.
While drain traps take care of the fumes, a vent system takes care of gurgles. The vent system can be best be explained by imagining soda pop being poured from a two-litre pop bottle into a glass. Have you noticed how it gurgles and “glugs” as it empties? If the bottle had a vent cap like a plastic gas container, the cap could be opened and the pop would flow smoothly. That’s because the vent hole allows air to enter behind the flowing liquid, producing a glug-free flow. Vent stacks in your home’s plumbing system work the same way.
The centerpiece of a DWV system is the main stack that runs straight up through the roof. A secondary stack with smaller diameter pipes serves a branch of the system. Branch drainpipes of still smaller diameter carry water from specific fixtures to a stack.
In newer homes, these pipes are usually made from PVC. In previous years plastic was used. Prior to that, cast iron was the material of choice. It’s important that these drain pipes are installed and repaired according to precise specifications.
Water that flows out should stay out
Another important element of your home’s drainage system is drain tile. When there’s flooding or dampness in the basement or crawlspace, it usually means there’s an issue with the drain tile system. That’s when Groundhog Excavating enters the picture to inspect and repair any troublesome areas.
Drain tiles are a run of pipe with holes surrounded with rock. This piping slopes very slightly around the perimeter of your home. The holes let in water so that it can then run toward a city connection or in some cases a rock pit. If your drain tile is working properly, you won’t know it’s there. Without it, your basement or crawl space is at risk of flooding.
Is your house is situated in a low-lying area where the water table is above the table of your home? You’ll need to take extra precautions. Protect your home’s foundation and install sump pumps to remove the extra water that drain tile fails to eliminate. Dimple board can also protect your foundation. At Groundhog Excavating, we use a black dimpled plastic material that creates an air gap between the foundation and the soils.
It’s also important to waterproof your foundation. If your basement or crawl space has moisture, we may need to inject polyurethane into the cracks in the foundation’s exterior. We can also waterproof your foundation with a rubber membrane — a product that when dry is like rubber to the touch – which we apply it to the exterior walls. Normally, these external solutions fix the problem. However, in some cases, the only option is to repair the foundation from the inside.
The experts at the Groundhog team have the equipment, expertise and to analyze the situation, discuss your options with you, and take care of the problem. And we offer free estimates on our services. Get in touch with us today at 778-233-7499. You can also use our online contact form.