Work performed: install drain along interior of basement foundation wall to prevent winter rains from coming in through the floor cracks.
When calling around for bids I nearly skipped over calling Waterproofing Plus (http://waterproofingplus... ) because I couldn't find much information about this company, and there were many other companies to call. But after talking to five other waterproofing companies and getting six different options, I wanted to get just one more opinion. Waterproofing Plus (WP+) provided me an option that was very reasonable and nearly matched another bid. WP+ was good about handling obstacles (gas fireplace, stairs) that challenged a couple other companies. Further, WP+ provides a lifetime no-leak guarantee.
WP+ has been around since the mid 1960's, and the owner has been with the company since 1974. He's the one who does the bid and does the work, with two experienced assistants. It's a small company (just these three) so they can only handle one or two jobs at a time. They're all very nice guys that show up on time, leave the work site clean, and communicate well. It crossed my mind not to take their bid because they smoke, but I'm glad I didn't listen to that voice: it was not a nuisance at all and butts were not left on the premises. WP+ uses an answering service (at least during the day) instead of voice mail and they're good at returning calls. They haul away the concrete to a recycler in a classic 1962 Ford dump truck.
The work started with me preparing the basement by removing everything, including wall hangings, from the area. I was able to leave some larger furniture in the middle of the room and they covered it and worked around it. WP+ hangs light plastic drop cloths around the work areas because the work is very dusty. With multiple jackhammers used to break up the concrete around the perimeter, it sounds a bit like the house is having major dental work. The sound continues pretty much all day and exhaust smell from the air compressor (though outside) can waft through the house.
Once the concrete was broken up and removed, they laid in perforated pipe and gravel, covered with a bit of plastic to keep wet concrete from seeping into pipe, then covered with concrete. The pipe runs into a deep catch basin, then through a one-way check valve and p-trap, then ties into the sewer. (Some installations might use a sump pump and/or tie into a remote dry well or other location). Once the concrete cured white-ish it could be covered (running fans helps speed the process).
I had a lot of roots exposed so I am obligated (per guarantee) to use a root killer a couple times a year to keep roots from clogging up the pipe. From what I have read, a dichlobenil based product is the "lesser of two evils" compared to a copper sulfate product. I have also read that dichlobenil deteriorates over time so you'll want to use product that is less than a year old or so.
This kind of work is best done outside the rainy season because a) there is less demand for waterproofing then, and b) the ground is not already saturated. However, if you do have an emergency situation, WP+ indicated that they could install a temporary solution then return later with a complete solution when time permits.
What keeps this score from being five-star is that they did not wipe dust from all the walls and ceiling.