How do you stop a fresh water spring from running???

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Hello,
I have a problem that is becoming pretty big. Early this past spring, I noticed a lot of water running all over the bottom of my driveway and sidewalk. At first, I thought it was a broken water line but it really looked like a spring to me. So, I waited...and waited...and waited. Once summer came along, it stopped. So I now know it is a spring.
Well, it has started back with a vengeance!!! It doesn't really bother me but now that the cold weather is coming, it is going to pose a problem with a public sidewalk being constantly coated with water and the ice buildup is going to be horrible. Not to mention all of the ice on my driveway, which is a hill.
I know it may be too late this year and I will have to deal with it but how does one stop a spring from running? It comes out of a big flower bed that I don't really want to lose but if I have to, I will. The only thing I can think of is some sort of French drain and, maybe a cistern of some sort. I cold make this into a positive and capture a bunch of water to use to water my lawn and garden and to wash the car and such.
Any and all thoughts welcome!!!
Thanks, busbus
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If it flows over a public sidewalk and possibly onto the street, you need to get your city or town department involved as there could be some serious liability issues. Call them and get their engineer to come over and assess the situation. They may take on the project and pipe the spring into a storm sewer or some other place. They may want you to grant them permission to come onto your property and to do their work.
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Hell, it still might be a broken water line... Better get the water authority out there to check if you have municipal water.
In the summer it gets dry and the ground can absorb the water. Now that the fall rains are going full swing, the ground is saturated and it's got no place to go but up.
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That would be a nasty surprise. The OP should call the water dept. That could save the town a lot of disaster, the pipe could fail worse, and make a total mess.

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On Fri, 2 Dec 2011 06:52:56 -0800 (PST), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

I found a horizontal pipe in an overgrown field, away from any roads, that was shooting water 8 feet from the opening. I had gotten there by parking on the expressway, climbing down to stream level, going under the Xway and climbing up until I was about 100 feet from the xway.
It had flooded a couple acres where I wanted to work, land that was dry when I first looked at it, but wet for months and months afterwards. It was in Baltimore County so I called them. They said to call the city, which maybe provides the water for the Country. They said to call the County The second time, they took me more seriously. They finally capped the pipe maybe 3 months after I first reported it. I didnt' get back there much but when I did 3 or 4 months later, the land was dry again.

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On 12/1/2011 9:20 PM, busbus wrote:

You don't stop it, you dig it up, add some pipe and stone, cover it again and reroute the pipe to where the water will not be a problem.
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The drain and cistern may be a good idea for catching water, but it is not going to solve the problem. Once the cistern is filled, it is going to just flow again
Think about diversion. It may be possible to divert it near the source, if not, at your driveway you may be able to get it to go under to the other side to avoid icing.
If you divert it to the road, you may have other problems with the town for causing a nuisance or hazard in the road.
At a minimum, you may get away with a trench and PVC pipe in a drain. Or you may need an environmental impact study, engineered drain and bridge system to allow natural flow. Seriously, these things do happen.
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The builder/previous owner of the house must have known of the problem. Consider getting legal advice as the situation could escalate into something rather nasty.
Joe
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Installing a cistern isn't a trivial job. And once it's full, then what? You have to pump it out. Since you have to pump it, a simple sump pump basin system would do the same thing. But any such system would have to deal with freezing issues in winter. A drywell would at least drain itself, but again given the conditions I suspect that if you dug a hole it would fill with water on it's own, so that's out.
Before contacting the town, I'd carefully consider where you could channel the water to. If there are any reasonable options, you might want to consider them first. If there is some simple method that might not be 100% Kosher with the town and you just do it, you'd probably get away with it. Once you get the town involved, that option is pretty much closed.
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wrote:

I know it is a big job. That is why I was asking if I should consider it as part of this job. I don't think I can divert the water to without the municipality knowing about it. I would have to break up the side walk and the break up the curb to put the drain pipe thru to the street and, eventually, the water will drain into the storm drain. I am sure I will get nailed if they find me breaking up the curb and I also think I can be fined if I drain into a storm drain without them knowing.
Well, I think the cistern idea is out. It seemed like such a good idea even though I know the work and materials would cost a fortune. I think the benefits don't outweigh the costs.
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Where do the other French drains go? The most logical choice would be to tie the drain for this spring into the existing drainage system.
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On Dec 2, 10:04am, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

I suspect under the driveway.
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If you _do_ have french drains already that don't feed into a dry well, that is the place to lead a drain to. Would not be all that expensive, walk behind trencher and a bit of pipe.
Harry K
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get water tested for cholrine or whatever city water uses to make water safe..
its possible to tunnel under a sidewalk to put in a drain line if you have access to both sides..... i have done this in the past:)
local buiding inspector copuld be large help:) or royal PIA,....
largely depends on the person.
the excess water could also be from a sewer leak....... that happened to a friend
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Same place the water's coming out?
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wrote:

Well, I took the advice given here and had the water company come out to take a look-see. I was right: it is water coming from behind the house. In other words, it's a spring.
Darn. I know others in this group are absolutely right whenever they say I need to give the old devil himself, the municipal inspector, a call to see what I am "allowed" to do with all of this water. Part of me really hoped it was the water line, mostly because I happened to sign on for water line protection back in June, just in case. Whenever the water dried up, I immediately suspected my initial thought was right and it was a spring. It was made even more clear once the rain started this fall. But somebody in here made sense whenever they said the dry ground could be soaking up all the water if there was a leak.
So I went for the cheap way out...and lost. I guess I will see what the inspector wants me to do...then PAY for it, garsh darn it.
Thanks for all the advice!
ray
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call inspector give just first name, lock out caller id and ask lots of questions.......
basically you can do what you want if no one complains..
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In all probability the spring was either dried up or had been plugged during the construction of the house. In any case, if you try to stop it the result will be an eventual reoccurance somewhere else on your property. If the water has found its way to the surface once, it will do so again. The next time it comes up may be in an even worse location. My recommendation would be to clean it out to provide a clear opening and then provide a drainage to the street or other location that can accomodate a continous flow. Hell, you might even tap it for irrigation of the lawn.
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On 12/6/2011 4:28 PM, BobR wrote:

stick a pipe in it, lead it to a small wooden stand, add a hose bib off the pipe, and put up a sign "$.10/gallon fresh spring water".
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Sounds great except for the fact that it would be like waving a red cape in front of the bull government. They couldn't allow such withoug regulating the holy hell out of it and taxing it.
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