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Protecting our East wall from damp turns out to be a challenge: The ground level in this service lane sits higher than our house. Also there's an interesting sewage system from our neighbour.

Protecting our East wall from damp turns out to be a challenge: The ground level in this service lane sits higher than our house. Also there’s an interesting sewage system from our neighbour.

Living on Table mountain’s slope anywhere in Cape Town probably means your property gets very wet during winter: Not only can it rain like out of buckets, the water masses coming down from the mountain also need to go somewhere.

To avoid damp problems arising every winter, prevention is key: Waterproofing is only half job. – Water needs to be diverted away from your house, and ample ventilation needs to be provided for moisture to evaporate.

In dense city areas, where buildings sit right on their boundary walls, there is not always space for sufficient drainage. Building into the mountain slope can mean having a higher ground level sitting right against your house wall. This is a continuous source of humidity and will cause rising damp.

As a solution the ‘French Drain’ pops up. There’s a lot to learn about French drains, so here a list of some helpful resources:

When do you need a French Drain.

How French Drain systems work.

There’s quite a discussion where to place the French pipe. A summary of best practices how to install a foundation drain.

Tips How to Build an Exterior French Drain System.

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