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The Home Smithy
The Home Smithy, Home Builder
Category: Home Improvement
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A contractor dug down to the foundations of our basement wall

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A contractor dug down to the foundations of our basement wall and brushed weatherproofing tar on the outside of it; cement was poured at the base of this wall then a "foundation coating" was applied to "all below grade surfaces" ("heavy duty polymer") this was followed by a "styrofoam board to cover the entire area." Dirt was then filled back in.

Ours is an end unit townhouse on a hillside with three landscaped levels on the wall this was done to. A PVC pipe goes down the hillside which carries water from the various downspouts which are tied into it.

AT the back of our townhouse (bottom of the three level hillside) is a large patio with the pavers backing to the brick wall.

This work was done four months ago.

Today, I noticed a small pool (one inch by one inch-no idea of the depth) of tar in a corner of the patio which joins the brick wall. This is directly at the bottom of the three levels, directly at the bottom where the wall was weatherproofed.

Why is there a small pool of liquid tar? Shouldn't this have hardened over four months?
Does this mean they should dig all of the backfull out and do all of the work over again?

I should also note that we have had six or more inches of rain over the past three weeks if this might be related. Also soil seems to be eroding from the bottom of the hillside onto the patio.


Hi. Welcome to Just Answer.

The tar may just be a piece that was discarded and when it got warm came up through the soil/pavers. I cant see any of the tar from the wall coming past the polymer and the styrofoam. That is pretty unlikely. If the contractof finds that the styro or poly has slipped or shifted then yes they will have to dig it back up and repair at least that part.

The soil coming down the hill needs to be channelled away from the building, or a retaining wall built to stop it from getting onto the patio or around the wall to the property where it can affect the home. If the soil is bare it needs burlap netting placed over it to stop the erosion until plants or grasses can get a foot hold and prevent the erosion.

Please let me know if you have any other immediate concerns.
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Best, Smitty
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