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Old 01-02-2008, 08:20 AM
 
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Hi
I live right outside of Windcrest. We haven't had any significant rain in a while. Do I need to be watering my house? (foundation issues). How often? How long?
I I water right at the foundation or do I water right outside the foundation in the same place that rain would fall?
I just looked out my windows this morning and noticed that my walkway is uneven. Should I be concerned about my house?

Thanks
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Old 01-02-2008, 08:54 AM
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Location: Ohio
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Whether you need to water depends on the expansiveness of the soil around your home. The map here shows where the most expansive soils are in Texas.

My builder recommended laying a soaker hose 18" from the foundation and watering for "several hours per week" during "dry periods."

As for quantity of watering, here's the quote from my builder's homeowner manual that addresses that:

"How much water is enough? Too much? The answer is that soil should be damp to the touch. If the soil is hard or dusty or cracked, it is too dry. If it is saturated or "squishy," it is too wet."
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Old 01-02-2008, 06:12 PM
 
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I heard that this can do more damage than good. I am not sure all the problems associated with watering around your home but I know that it will attract termites. I never watered my house ever and did not have problems with alot of shifting. It just doesn't sound like a sound thing to do.
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Old 01-02-2008, 06:17 PM
 
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For landscaping purposes it would be great if everyone xeriscaped. Also the dog days of summer have long gone but will come again and when they do everyone should follow their local water restrictions. It is amazing how many business waste so much water. Anyone who ever drove in the middle of the night around the city would see so much water wasted, especially after it already rains and they are still sprinkling, and it is all run off onto the street >_<
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Old 01-02-2008, 06:37 PM
Bo Bo won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Tenth Edition (Apr-May 2014). 

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Location: Ohio
17,102 posts, read 35,564,241 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Merovee View Post
For landscaping purposes it would be great if everyone xeriscaped. Also the dog days of summer have long gone but will come again and when they do everyone should follow their local water restrictions. It is amazing how many business waste so much water. Anyone who ever drove in the middle of the night around the city would see so much water wasted, especially after it already rains and they are still sprinkling, and it is all run off onto the street >_<
While I don't disagree with the need to use less water on the landscape, IMO it is not a relevant point for a discussion of foundation watering. Foundation watering is not done for the benefit of the landscape. It's done to protect the slab foundation of the home. Times of drought are when foundation watering is most needed, so it should not be omitted in the name of conservation.
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Old 01-02-2008, 06:42 PM
 
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This is all news to me. I did not know we needed to water our house. Can someone please give me some specific info or suggestions? Our home is 27 years old, and no foundation problems that we know of. What do I need to be doing? Thanks in advance!!
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Old 01-02-2008, 11:09 PM
 
Location: San Antonio
470 posts, read 1,856,186 times
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When building, my inspector found out the plasticity index of our lot to ensure that our foundation was engineered accordingly. I think we rated under 30, which is relatively solid ground. Regardless, D.R. Horton warranty folks suggested we water just about 18" away from the foundation when it gets dry... and that if you start seeing gaps between your foundation and the soil... this isn't a good sign >>> time to moisten up the soil!
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Old 01-03-2008, 09:10 AM
 
Location: San Antonio
343 posts, read 1,232,991 times
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Our home inspector and builder's warranty person both made me understand how important this is.

This is not new to me but they both kept saying that since it has been so dry lately that it is very important.
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Old 01-03-2008, 10:21 PM
 
Location: Washington, DC & San Antonio, TX
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I hope this isn't one of those "dumb questions", but is watering necessary for pier & beam foundations (i.e. older/historic homes). I'm in a neighborhood with notoriously shifting ground, and I was led to believe that with the old pier & beam houses, all you can do is shim up the piers every once in a while when the house starts to shift too much. Would watering help minimize shifting?
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Old 01-04-2008, 08:15 AM
 
Location: The "original 36" of SA
841 posts, read 1,607,819 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CelesteDF View Post
I hope this isn't one of those "dumb questions", but is watering necessary for pier & beam foundations (i.e. older/historic homes). I'm in a neighborhood with notoriously shifting ground, and I was led to believe that with the old pier & beam houses, all you can do is shim up the piers every once in a while when the house starts to shift too much. Would watering help minimize shifting?
Not a dumb question - I've asked the same one myself. Both a structural engineer and a home inspector told me that I do NOT need to water our pier and beam foundation. The structural engineer said that the reason we had shifting was because of improper drainage and we needed to ensure "positive drainage" for at least 3' away from the house. I'll look for the exact literature he gave me this weekend which explained maintenance of pier and beam foundations.
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