Do sumps pumps and drain tiles create a self fulfilling prophecy?
This may seem like an odd question so let me explain myself, and to be clear it is mostly philosophical and out of curiosity.
I own/have owned/lived in many different buildings in the Chicago area. My parents house is also nearby.
None have a sump pump/pit (and possibly no drain tiles), all have basements. I recently bought a house that was without electricity for quite a while. It has a sump and drain tiles. After losing electricity it would flood with any rain, this is even after extending all downspouts significantly away from the building. I would borrow electric from my neighbor and pump it out but I could watch the sump pit fill back up. I had the soil tested and it came back as great soil (clay all around) with no groundwater at 15′ So basically the foundation is in a clay bowl and the porous soil created by digging to create the foundation is where water infiltrates into the drain tile and into the sump pit and into the basement. Basically no electricity means eventual water in the basement.
On to my question, as I mentioned none of the other houses I have owned, rented, lived in etc in the area has/had a sump pump and pit (including one in the same neighborhood as the flooding house) and none of these houses have ever had water in the basement.
This begs the question does the sump/drain tile combo create a self fulfilling prophesy of flooding (if their is no electricity or if there is a pump failure) since you have created this path specifically for the water to infiltrate (in which case shouldn’t the sump pit be external to the building somehow? giving you a few more hours of dryness if you have no electric) or is it that the houses with no sump are just lucky?
Finally, I don’t know any builder or architect who build’s a basement without a sump anymore (due to the prevalence of overhead sewers now???) but how was it determined before that all these other buildings did not need a sump pump and pit (and remained dry) and all of the sudden every building needs one?
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