We have installed 6 dry wells around the building as there was no empty space for drainage water.

We did this as per the engineer's advice.

Sand texture:

  • It's clay
  • Water table 2 ( During rainy season ) to 4 feet ( During summer )
  • Ground water is saline

I asked my engineer if it will impact ( Differential Settlement ) the building foundation he said it's not a problem as all the buildings in the town are standing in wet ground ( 5 feet ground water table ).

But I'm worried about the building foundation such as

  • Capillary effect
  • Hydrostatic pressure on walls
  • Water seepage on the walls
  • Differential settlement

Four 2 feet by 2 feet  dry wells on one side of building

Two 3 feet by 3 feet dry wells on the other of building

What should I do ?

  • Should I keep plants around the building wall and dry well ?
  • What kind of Plant's root would not damage the wall ?

Here is the photo of sample retaining wall that builder has in mind. Any suggestions are welcome

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Here is how the dry wells ( 5 feet depth ) are going to be connected sequentially

enter image description here

I'm happy with the whole but I'm worried about my building foundation like I mentioned earlier and I want to take all the steps to make sure my building is safe and sound.


Our house is built like in the below picture [ Framed structure not Load bearing wall structure ]

enter image description here

enter image description here

Sand Character:

enter image description here


  • Please find the video of dry wells on the south side of the building here

  • Please find the video of dry wells on the north side of the building here


According to local engineers , I have nothing to worry about this whole cement ring well drainage set up , because ground water table level is already at 3 to 5 feet so every building in the town is practically standing at wet ground so this drainage well will not do any harm. But I'm not convinced this dry well can saturate the soil bit more and could cause settlement which can lead to fraction in the wall ?

Somebody please give their wisdom in this.

  • If you are lucky then the builders have sealed the foundation well. Trees are bad if too close(your situation), grass and flowers good. This site might help with what to plant, knowing the ground water. gardening.stackexchange.com
    – crip659
    Commented Jul 11, 2022 at 21:15
  • Builder mentions the foundation is sealed with Black paint or tar bitumen so nothing can penetrate the wall. he also mentions he has built building close by water bodies and nothing happened. the reason he mentions is that the ground water table is high like 5 feet so literally all the buildings are standing in wet clay ground so no problem. What's your take on this ?
    – Amogam
    Commented Jul 11, 2022 at 21:22
  • If they are good local builders, they should know how to do it right. It costs them money to fix mistakes, when the basement gets flooded. Your older neighbours should know if they do it right.
    – crip659
    Commented Jul 11, 2022 at 21:26
  • 1
    The engineer had you position the dry wells adjacent to the foundation? I hope your foundation is a slab I can’t tell. This is really an engineering question and the type of foundation and the actual soil compression/ drainage factors would need to be known.
    – Ed Beal
    Commented Jul 11, 2022 at 21:37
  • 3
    You've paid an engineer familiar with your local area and have gotten input and advice from him, but you don't trust it so you're turning to a bunch of strangers on the internet who don't even know what part of the world you live in? That's... interesting. If you're that worried, spend a bit more money and ask another local engineering firm to review the plans. If there are issues, it was money well spent, if there aren't then the peace of mind should make it money well spent.
    – FreeMan
    Commented Jul 12, 2022 at 16:03

1 Answer 1


Answer is PLINTH PROTECTION for the plinth beam.

Plinth beam is meant to protect the building from Differential settlement and distribute the dead and live load of the building.

It also stops the capillary action so water damage won't be done.

enter image description here

Add Plinth Protection Layer adjacent to Plinth ( Use just PCC[Plain Concrete Cement] ) for 1 metre so it stops the water from coming in touch with plinth wall this stops capilary action.

If water percolates and damages the foundation and differential settlement starts then this Plinth protection will stop the continuation of cracks in Plinth wall.


But you may wait and see how the building settles and if any crack appears then go for FOUNDATION UNDERPINING

enter image description here

enter image description here

  • 3
    In the Pacific Northwest we call that a side walk. Sorry could not help saying that but it helps prevent damage on several levels as you mentioned.
    – Ed Beal
    Commented Jul 12, 2022 at 16:01
  • But I have got 6 dry wells around the building , how am I supposed to do ? Should I leave the dry wells opening and cover the rest of the area with PlNTH protection ?
    – Amogam
    Commented Jul 12, 2022 at 20:06
  • Not sure ,But check out my updated answer it might help you
    – Amu
    Commented Jul 12, 2022 at 20:13
  • @Amu - My foundation has Concrete RCC column and RCC footer. Even if water percolates into the ground .. can water damage the RCC .. as far as I know water can damage walls with bricks and not RCC or PCC or DPC. So percolation of water .. can it really affect the foundation ?
    – Amogam
    Commented Jul 12, 2022 at 21:15
  • 1
    Oh my god all this increases my anxiety.. my ground is full of clay , I'm confused on what to do ... because drywell's are already installed.. even if I do Plinth protection what about the areas that are having dry well ... should I take out the dry wells ? if I take out what can I do about the drainage water ? Feels like I gave the whole project to bunch of idiots and my peace of mind is gone... desperately looking to do something to save my building foundation and do something about the drainage as well
    – Amogam
    Commented Jul 13, 2022 at 9:50

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