• Causes of Water Seepage and Basement Leaks

    Causes of Water Seepage and Basement Leaks

    Water seepage is one of the most common problems associated with basements. It can lead to an abundance of problems that can ultimately harm your foundation, present breeding grounds for mold, and cost you an excessive amount of money. Basement leaks can be prevented if you know what causes them. The following blog discusses the most common causes of unwanted water in and around your home.

    Water Seepage Culprits

    Top Causes of Water Seepage and Basement Leaks in Gaithersburg

    As discussed in a previous post, window wells are a prime suspect for unwanted water making its way into the basement. Windows should be free from cracks and properly sealed. If a window well doesn’t have adequate drainage, or the drain is clogged or blocked by debris, water can accumulate in the well. Even with a window free from any defect, without anywhere to go, pooled water will eventually start to seep into undesirable areas.

    A less obvious source of basement leaks can be from the water that occurs naturally in the soil surrounding your house. Heavy precipitation can cause excess water to saturate the soil. This saturation causes expansion. That expansion can wreak havoc on a foundation, with excess water causing cracks that eventually make way for leaks directly into your basement.

    Speaking of cracks in your foundation, floor cracks are another common way for water to seep into your home. Water in the soil surrounding the foundation of your home can not only force its way in through the walls but can come up through floor cracks. Hydrostatic pressure is formed when water pools under the concrete flooring. Since it has nowhere else to go, the pressure forces the water up through any present cracks and into your basement. There are no quick fixes for this kind of water seepage.

    Sump pumps are the best solution for hydrostatic pressure. A hole, called a sump pit, is created in the concrete floor. Once the pit fills with water, the electric pump is activated. The water is then pumped away from the floor and foundation to differing drainage systems or wells. Water will no longer pool under the flooring.

    Water can also make way into a basement through wall cracks that weren’t caused by soil expansion from saturation. Over time, concrete walls expand and contract due to variables beyond our control.

    Basement crack repair can be done many different ways, with a ton of solutions from any hardware store, but we don’t recommend it as a permanent fix. The root of the problem, pressure forcing the water in through the cracks, must be resolved before the crack can be repaired. A repaired crack will continue to allow water to seep into your basement if the underlying water pressure isn’t resolved.

    The space where the wall meets the floor in any room is called a cove joint. This area can also be a contender for leaks and cracks. Since the floor and the wall are different pours of concrete, over time, water can and will make its way through this space and into your home with the presence of excess water. While it can be sealed, this is only a temporary solution. Water pressure will eventually compromise any sealant and leaks will return. This leak is permanently fixed by repairing the crack on the exterior and interior as well as fixing drainage around the foundation of the home.

    Untreated Leaks

    If water seepage is gone untreated, you potentially allow your basement (and the rest of your house) to become a perfect breeding ground for mold and other hazardous problems. The integrity of your foundation can become compromised. Your belongings can be ruined by water damage. The air in your home can be humid or damp feeling. The overall value of your home and health can deteriorate due to structural or mold damage.

    Don’t Let Your Basement Get Ruined

    At Triad, we take pride in our ability to rid your home of water seepage and repair the damage caused by leaks. We are experts in water damage remediation. Whether you already have evidence of unwanted water in your home, or you would like to be proactive in preventing any future damage, give us a call.

    From problem plumbing to leaky foundations, we can repair and resolve any water damage you may have.

    We are not only licensed, bonded, and insured, but we also offer a lifetime transferable warranty. Our basements can be wonderful extensions of our homes. Let us help you keep yours in top shape.

    Give us a call today for a free estimate!

  • Everything You Need to Know About Water Damage Remediation

    Everything You Need to Know About Water Damage Remediation

    Water damage is one of the most common and worst side effects of water leakage or flooding in a basement. Water damage is also one of the leading causes of home insurance claims and it is responsible for millions of dollars in damages every year.

    In addition to contributing to structural and foundation problems, basement water damage can completely destroy your personal belongings and interior decorative finishes and it also has the power to create the perfect environment for toxic mold growth.

    Most homeowners who are lucky enough to have a basement will experience some form of water damage at some point or another.

    This can be in the form of a small water leak, broken plumbing, failed sump pumps, leaky walls and windows or a weak foundation. The first step in remedying basement water damage is to turn off the electricity in the area as well as the gas supply to any appliances whose pilot lights and systems are under water.

    Once that is done you need to find out where the flooding or leaking is coming from. There are various other steps to follow to fix water damage and to get your home and basement back to their natural and comfortable dry state.

    Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about water damage remediation !

    Everything You Need to Know About Water Damage Remediation in Gaithersburg

    Water Damage Remediation Tips

    First: Remove the Water

    After you have cut off the electricity and gas to the water damaged are it’s time to find the source of the leak, patch it up temporarily so no more water leaks into your home and then begin the cleanup process.

    This process is one of the most important steps in water damage remediation and it can take some time. How long it takes depends on the length of time the water was present in your home and how well you patch up the leak. Before you begin the full cleanup and begin repairing damaged furniture and flooring all standing water must be completely removed.

    Once the water has been pumped out completely then you will need to dry out the wet area and get rid of all damaged materials such as drywall, carpeting and furniture.

    The best way to remove water from your home or basement depends on how much water accumulated in the space. You can either use a bucket to scoop out the water or a professional wet/dry vacuum that will pump the water outside and away from your property.

    Second: Water Damage Remediation

    Once the standing water has been expelled from inside your home and you have located and patched the leak temporarily it is time for fixing the damage caused by the water.

    Make sure that the area is well ventilated by opening windows and bringing in fans. It’s important to dry out the area and to make sure that there is no mold growth.

    If you do locate mold growth then you need to get rid of it right away and sanitize the area, because continued mold growth releases spores into the air, which can be very harmful if inhaled.

    Basement water damage remediation can be as easy as patching a few cracks in the walls and insulating the windows or it can get as complicated as replacing bad pipes, wrapping them with insulation, replacing drywall and interior finishes or fixing a weak foundation.

    If your home is suffering from water damage it’s best to bring in a professional who can evaluate the overall damage and help you prioritize what needs to be fixed right away.

    Mold growth should be cleaned out as soon as possible, soaked drywall and carpeting needs to be removed and replaced as soon as possible and fixing leaks and cracks should also be prioritized.

    Third: Invest in Basement Waterproofing

    If you have experienced basement water damage once then you know that you will surely do everything you can to avoid similar problems in the future.

    Once a basement has undergone water damage remediation one time it should be periodically inspected to make sure it continues to stay dry and you should consider investing in preventive measures such as basement waterproofing .

    There are various methods of basement waterproofing to choose from including exterior drainage systems, sump pumps, waterproof coatings and more. Make sure to watch out for telltale signs of excessive moisture such as condensation around pipes and windows and water stains on the ceiling or walls.

    Get Water Damage Remediation Assistance

    If you need assistance with water damage remediation or if you are interested in preventing future water damage to your home connect with the expert team at Triad Basement Waterproofing today.

    With more than 27 years of experience in the basement waterproofing industry you can rest assured knowing you are safe in the hands of experienced professionals. Connect today to inquire about pricing, services and more information about how to deal with water damage remediation.

  • What You Need to Know About Mold from Basement Flooding

    What You Need to Know About Mold from Basement Flooding

    The first thing you need to check for after a flooded basement is mold and fungus growth. Not only can mold cause serious health issues for you and your entire family, but if you let it get out of control and invade your home it can be incredibly difficult to get rid of.

    The best way to prevent mold is to avoid leaks, floods and humid and musty air.

    It’s important to educate yourself about what mold and mildew is, where it grows, why it grows and how you can prevent it from growing in your home and basement.

    If you do however find mold in your home you also need to know how to get rid of it effectively, how to sanitize your home properly and protect your home from future growth.

    We’ve put together a comprehensive guide to help you understand mold and mildew and how you can prevent it from invading your home.

    Mold from Basement Flooding

    Understanding Mold

    What is mold?

    Mold and mildew are fungi. Fungi are neither plant nor animal and there are approximately 100,000 species of fungi that have been detected worldwide. Mold is found in humid and wet areas, such as a wet basement and is different from organic mold found in the great outdoors.

    While mold and mildew are both fungi and they send their spores flying through the air there is a difference between the two. Mildew is commonly grey or white while mold is usually black, red, green, brown or a combination of these colors.

    Why is mold bad?

    Mold thrives in damp and humid environments and as it grows it release spores into the air, which can make people very sick if inhaled. Toxic mold can irritate your eyes, your respiratory system and cause very unpleasant odors in your basement. Mold exposure can lead to allergic reaction symptoms such as sneezing, running nose, itchy eyes, congestion and even skin irritations. Mold can trigger asthma attacks and cause serious problems for individuals who have weakened immune systems. Mold will also eventually destroy the things it grows on.

    Where does mold come from?

    Mold spores can get into your home through open doorways, windows, air conditioning and heating systems and any other open spaces that lead into your home. It is also possible for spores to attach themselves to clothing, shoes and pets.

    Once these spores settle into a space where there is extensive moisture, such as in a leaky basement, they will grow and they will grow very quickly.

    Wet materials including paper, cardboard, ceiling tiles, wood and various other products encourage many different types of mold to grow. Other materials such as paint, wallpaper, drywall, carpet, insulation and upholstery also easily support mold growth if there is moisture and humidity in the area.

    Some of the most common indoor molds include:

    • Penicillium
    • Cladosporium
    • Aspergillus
    • Alternaria

    Dealing with Mold Issues

    How to get rid of mold

    If you find mold in your basement it is important to take care of it right away by removing the infection and sanitizing the area. If you find mold on furniture or carpets it’s safer to completely remove and replace these items instead of trying to save them. There are a number of commercial brand and natural products that can be used to remove mold from hard surfaces.

    One of the best ways to get rid of mold in your basement is to tear out the contaminated areas and replace them with fresh materials. If you can’t do that then you can just as effectively remove the infection with bleach, borax and vinegar. Bleach reduces the mold count and neutralizes harmful bacteria, but it doesn’t completely kill it. Another solution for removal is vinegar or borax.

    After you have checked every corner and crevice in your basement for mold and cleaned it all out, then you have to go back and make sure to sanitize each area multiple times until you are satisfied that everything is clean. Once your basement is clean make sure it gets completely dry…otherwise you may end up with another mold problem sooner than you expect.

    Prevent future mold growth

    Keep your basement mold-free by installing dehumidifiers and keeping the humidity in your home low.

    If your home is prone to basement flooding then you also need to invest in basement waterproofing services to keep the area dry.

    If you have any questions about mold and mildew, how to find it, evict it and prevent it don’t hesitate to contact the experts at Triad Basement Waterproofing. We have been dealing with basement issues and mold for more than 27 years and we guarantee that we can help you keep your home and basement in tip-top shape year round.

  • Top Methods for Basement Water Removal

    Top Methods for Basement Water Removal

    Major flood damage is without a doubt one of the most destructive events your home can experience and also one of the most emotionally draining and physically exhausting events you will endure as a homeowner.

    Regardless of the issue or reason behind the basement leak or flood, water damage can significantly and negatively affect your walls, ceilings, the roof, your furniture and belongings and the overall foundation and structure of your home. If you and your home are subjected to flooding and water damage your first thought may be to pump the water out as quickly as possible and begin the cleanup process.

    Before you rush into a quick DIY fix that you found on Google take the time to either do your research or call a professional for assistance.

    It’s important to take the proper steps towards water removal and clean up in order to truly fix the problem. After the cleanup, you will surely want to look into preventive measures such as basement waterproofing to avoid any future leaks and floods.

    Basement Water Removal

    Find the Problem

    If you have, or are, experiencing wet basement issues the first thing you need to do is to find out where the water is coming from and why. There are various points of entry for water, but the main ones are your windows, the walls and the seams between the wall and the floor.

    Once you have found the culprit, make sure to patch it in some way so that water doesn’t continue pouring or leaking in while you are struggling with the cleanup.

    Some of the main reasons behind basement leaks and floods are credited to extremely heavy storms and rain, rapid snow melts and believe it or not – dirty rain gutters. There are various preventive measures you can take to help you keep your home safe from these kinds of issues.

    Prepare for the Cleanup

    Make sure to turn off all of the electricity that runs through the basement so you don’t hurt yourself while trying to fix your wet basement. Also make sure to wear protective clothing such as gloves, waterproof boots, goggles and any other protective gear you may need to guard yourself from hot water, bacteria and dirty water. Make sure to open the basement windows and introduce fresh air into the space to help with ventilation. You can also use fans to speed up the process.

    The Equipment

    In order to remove a large quantity of water from your basement you will need to acquire a submersible pump .

    The pump is encased in a waterproof shell and features a sealed electrical cord and a fitting that connects to a regular garden hose or a sump hose, which is larger in diameter. The larger the hose, the more quickly the pump will be able to remove the water. In addition to the pump and hose you will also need a heavy-duty extension cord and a generator to run the pump. If the water is more than a few feet deep then you will also need a nylon rope to help you lower the pump into the water.

    If the flood is less than about an inch deep then you might be able to pump out the water with a wet/dry vacuum. These tend to work very well, but they suck up the water into a tank, which can usually hold no more than four to five gallons of water.

    Each time the tank fills up you will have to carry it to a basement drain or all the way upstairs to a sink to dump it. For big water problems this could quickly become exhausting and inefficient.

    If you do decide to use a submersible pump you will have to set it up properly before you begin pumping the water out. Attach your extension cord to the pump cord before putting the pump in the basement. Make sure to secure the connection where it won’t be affected by the water.

    You can do this by looping the cords around a ceiling beam or another heavy object that will hold the connection in place and keep it from getting wet. Attach your garden hose or sump hose to the fitting on your pump and then position the hose away from the house where the water can drain into a gutter or storm sewer.

    Pump Out the Water

    As mentioned earlier, you should not try to remove the water as quickly as possibly from the basement.

    There is probably still an enormous amount of water pressure being exerted on the soil surrounding the foundation of your home and outside of your basement walls from any water that built up outside. The water inside your basement may be helping to balance the outside pressure and by pumping it out too fast the basement walls could crack or crumble inward. This would leave you with an even bigger problem than before.

    To safely remove the standing water from your basement make sure the standing water outside your home has receded. Use a pump to help to remove the water inside your basement.

    If you are using a gasoline powered pump make sure to properly use it in a ventilated area, because using this pump inside will create exhaust fumes and can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning. Remove about a third of the water and then check to make sure there is no more water leaking in from outside the basement walls.

    Make a mark on the wall to note how much water was pumped out and wait a day to see if more water leaks in. If you can’t find the mark the next day it means more water leaked in and you need to find the source. If the water level has not changes then you can pump the rest of the water out until the basement is completely drained. If at any time you notice pronounced cracking or crumbling of the walls strop the draining immediately.

    Don’t rush this process. The damage has already been done to your basement anyway so it is more important to pump out the water properly without causing more damage to the structure and foundation of the home.

    Clean Up the Mess

    Unfortunately, a flooded basement means more than just a wet room in your home, which is bad enough as it is.

    Most people use the basement for storage or as a bonus guest room, office or entertainment space. Once you have safely removed the water for your basement you will need to clean up the basement and completely sanitize the entire area to prevent hazardous mold growth.

    The general rule is that you should replace anything porous that was saturated with water. This includes drywall panels, carpets and furniture. There are companies who can help you with this process, but their services do not come cheap.

    Use a shovel to get rid of the mud and debris while it is still damp and wash down the walls before the dirt dries and hardens. Make sure to sanitize the basement floor and walls with a strong chemical such as bleach. Once you have cleaned the area and sanitized it you can speed up the ventilation and drying process by using fans and dehumidifiers.

    Make sure to inspect your basement for leaks, cracks or other issues that may put you in danger of another flood in the future.

    Fix It & Employ Preventive Measures

    Surviving a flooded basement once is one times too many, but having to do it again after you spent money to fix it and replaced your belongings is even worse.

    Make sure that this never happens to you or your home ever again.

    Hire a professional inspector to examine the space and to let you know what needs fixing, and then highly consider investing in professional waterproofing services.

    There are various methods of basement waterproofing available and a wide range of preventive measures you can take to ensure your basement and your home stay warm and dry year round.

    Educate yourself on the do’s and don’ts of basement waterproofing and decide whether the service will be a worthwhile investment for your property.

    Work With a Professional

    While it is possible to remove water from your basement on your own and to take care of the entire clean up process, it is obviously always easier and more efficient to work with a professional contractor.

    Triad Basement Waterproofing has been in the business of basements for more than 27 years and we can assist you with all of your basement needs. Whether you need help with a leaky and flooded basement or whether you are interested in preventive basement waterproofing services we guarantee a professional job well done by seasoned experts every single time.

    If you have any questions about leaky and flooded basements, or about any of our services don’t hesitate to give us a call. We would be more than happy to answer any questions and to help you make informed decisions about your home and your basement.

  • What Does Basement Waterproofing Cost?

    What Does Basement Waterproofing Cost?

    A wet basement is a homeowner’s worst nightmare. Whether it’s a finished basement that has been transformed into a bonus room for entertainment or if it’s just being used as a storage room, a wet or leaky basement can seriously damage a home, contribute to hazardous conditions and financially burden the homeowner.

    A home is not meant to be damp or wet and there are certain states and cities that are more prone to leaks and floods than others. If you have experienced leaking walls, floors or cracks in your basement then you most likely need the assistance of an experienced basement waterproofing company.

    Even if you’re lucky enough to have a warm and dry basement then you should probably also consider discussing basement waterproofing with a professional contractor . It’s always better to prevent a problem before it occurs. Investing in basement waterproofing will require a financial input, but the cost of preventive waterproofing is much lower than that of drying out a leaky basement, sanitizing it, finding the problem, patching the leak and then installing preventive measures.

    Basement waterproofing can cost as little as $20 for small wall cracks and as much as tens of thousands of dollars for repairs and complete basement waterproofing systems.

    There are different methods of basement waterproofing to choose from and different solutions are used for different homes. What may work in one home does not mean it will necessarily work in yours.

    Triad Basement Waterproofing works to locate the source of a problem and fix the cause so that the problem does not repeat itself.

    Basement Waterproofing Costs

    Costs Associated with Basement Waterproofing

    So what does basement waterproofing cost? Let’s take a look at the different factors involved in the cost and what the cost involves.

    Figure Out What the Problem Is

    The first thing to keep in mind when considering basement waterproofing services is your motivation behind needing or wanting the services.

    Are you looking for preventive measures or do you already have a problem that needs fixing?

    If you have clogged or misdirected gutters and downspouts then replacing or redirecting a gutter can cost anywhere from absolutely nothing to clean out debris and redirect it, all the way up to $300 for complete replacement.

    If you have a condensation issue then the main problem is probably the result of poor ventilation. If there is no heating or air conditioning in the basement, then installing a dehumidifier is a simple fix that costs around $250. If it is your water pipes that require insulation then that can cost anywhere between $50 and $100.

    Once you figure out what the problem is or your main motivation behind investing in basement waterproofing you will be able to make better decisions about the services you need and what you can pay for.

    Review Your Options

    There are different methods of basement waterproofing for you to choose from.

    The most common forms of waterproofing includes interior sealants , exterior systems and drainage .

    Basic interior waterproofing is made up of waterproof coatings, silicate-based concrete sealers and various acrylic formulas. Concrete waterproofing consists of thick cement-like coating , which quickly adheres to masonry walls. Concrete waterproof coatings cost between $30 and $40 for 100 square feet. Silicate-based concrete sealers are only suitable for walls that have not been painted or sealed and they react with concrete or brick in order to create a hard waterproof surface. Applying these sealers can cost anywhere between $40 and $50 for 200 square feet.

    Before any of these waterproof coatings and sealants are applied it is important to fix and repair any cracks that may be present in the walls, floors or on the ceiling. Special sealants can be injected into the opening to penetrate through to the exterior where they will seal off the path to potential moisture and leaks. While these sealants and waterproof coatings are meant to last a long time and they come with warranties they are not permanent solutions to big problems such as strong hydrostatic pressure that pushes against the foundation of the home.

    Another way to waterproof your home is to use plastic sheets and panels in combination with an interior drainage system. They won’t exactly stop water from getting in through the wall, but they will prevent it from ruining the inside of your basement and your belongings. The water that does make its way in through the walls will run down the plastic into a drainage system in the floor and a sump pump will easily move the water out of your basement. The entire system can cost between $3,000 and $5,000 for a 20-by-20 foot basement room.

    The best option for waterproofing is investing in a full-scale exterior waterproofing solution. This is also the most expensive, often costing between $15,000 and $30,000. Exterior waterproofing involves excavating around the house and installing waterproof coatings and drainage panels so water and hydrostatic pressure can’t get to the foundation of your home and inside your basement and property.

    Choose a Problem-Solving Solution

    When deciding on a basement waterproofing system for your home it is important to pick a problem-solving solution that will tackle moisture and leaks head on and prevent them from reoccurring. While this solution may sometimes cost more than just a quick patch-up, it should be viewed as a long-term investment.

    It’s better to spend more money for a permanent fix rather than waste money on temporary repairs that won’t hold long. Remember that one solution that is highly advertised and works for others may not necessarily fix your problem or work for your home, as each situation is unique.

    Be open-minded and consult with various contractors. Companies should offer a solution specifically tailored to your home that tackles your moisture issues at the source of the leak.

    Get Bids from Several Companies

    Surely you are looking for the best basement waterproofing services for your home.

    Picking a contractor to work with is an entire process on its own and it’s important to feel at ease with the company you ultimately hire. Hiring a contractor to perform any kind of waterproofing is a significant investment that can cost you as little as $300 for simple repairs and as high as $2,000 or $20,000 for more complex systems and solutions.

    It is also very important to get several estimates from various companies so that you can find the best price for the service you need.

    Make sure you know what to look for in a basement waterproofing company and how to differentiate between the companies who try too hard to sell you services you don’t need in hopes of obtaining new customers, and the good contractors who offer the best solutions at decent prices and perform good quality work.

    A good contractor will perform a thorough evaluation of the inside and outside of your home in order to find the source of your basement moisture problems. If a contractor is only looking at one area as opposed to the bigger picture you should take it as a red flag. Do not allow high-pressure sales pitches to sway your decision and make sure to ask around for trusted referrals.

    What the Cost Covers

    The basic cost to waterproof a basement averages around $7-$7.50 per square foot in 2014. The estimate is calculated from average material costs, labor, productivity rates and national average hourly labor wages.

    Your cost estimate generally includes:

    • The cost of the materials required for the service as well as delivery of the equipment and transportation to and from the job site
    • The cost to prepare the work site for the service including protecting the structure and materials
    • The cost of cleanup and debris removal after the project has been completed
    • Labor, time and minimum hourly wages

    Things that are not included in the cost of your estimate include:

    • General contractor fees for putting together a team and supervising the project
    • Sales tax on the materials and supplies necessary for the project
    • Permit and inspection fees that may be required by the local building department for your overall project

    Make sure to discuss the total cost of your waterproofing services with your contractor and exactly what is and is not covered by the estimate and the total cost. It’s important to communicate openly and honestly so that there are no unpleasant surprises later on when it’s too late.

    Professional Basement Waterproofing Company

    If you are interested in learning more about basement waterproofing services and the costs associated with the systems and repairs make sure to connect with the experts at Triad Basement Waterproofing.

    The company has more than 27 years of experience with commercial and residential structures and they have developed foolproof methods and state-of-the-art solutions for all kinds of basement issues.

    Call Triad Basement Waterproofing at (888) 279 – 8819 where you can connect with our team and discuss your options for basement waterproofing and the wide range of services offered by the company.

    We look forward to hearing from you and assisting you with all of your basement needs!

  • DIY Basement Waterproofing

    DIY Basement Waterproofing For Gaithersburg, MD

    Do-it-yourself projects are all the rage these days thanks to the DIY Network, Pinterest and other similar influences. Tackling a DIY project can be fun, exciting, frustrating and in some cases it may cost you more to accomplish than it would to hire a professional company. The point of DIY is to save money, but if it isn’t done right the first time around it can definitely be a bigger financial burden.

    DIY Basement Waterproofing in Gaithersburg

    Hearing the words “wet” and “basement” in one sentence together strikes fear in the hearts of all homeowners who are lucky enough to have a basement. The basement is a wonderful space located beneath the home, sometimes even built underground. If taken care of, this extra room can be used for anything and everything. Have you always dreamed of running your own yoga studio? Why not set it up in your basement? Fantasizing about a home movie theater? The basement is the best place for this addition.

    While the basement is a wonderful extra room to take advantage of it is very susceptible to moisture, leaks and flooding. This can be a very bad thing for a home movie theater. It’s important to understand the risks associated with basement leaks and flooding, to learn the warning signs and to educate yourself on how to repair these issues. While there are certain problems that will require professional help, such as foundation and structural repairs, there are many DIY basement waterproofing methods that every homeowner can learn and employ in their basements.

    Do-it-Yourself Basement Waterproofing Methods

    Signs of a Problem

    Before you decide to take on a DIY basement waterproofing project, take the time to inspect your home. Locate the weak spots in the foundation and other places where water is likely to force its way into your home. Water is most likely to come in through the walls, the floors and weak spots in the foundation or through windows. Look for warning signs of moisture such as:

      • Condensation on the walls or pipes
      • Musty smells or damp and humid air
      • Water trickling through the walls
      • Staining or blistering wall coverings
      • Deterioration of carpet or wood
      • Rust
      • Wall cracks
      • Mold

    These are just a couple of warning signs to look out for before you begin tackling DIY basement waterproofing. It’s a great idea to install preventive measures ahead of time so you don’t have to deal with moisture issues at all.

    DIY Crack Repair

    Repairing cracks in concrete is a fairly simple DIY task. Taking care of these pesky cracks makes the concrete look better, it extends the life of the surface and it will prevent water from leaking into your basement. Here is a step-by-step guide on DIY crack repair:

    1. Clean the floor – make sure there is no dirt or oil on the floor. If there is, use an efficient cleaner around the area. Fillers bond to the cement better if it is clean
    2. Chisel the crack clean – use a chisel and hammer to get rid of any of the large pieces in the crack. This process also helps to make the inside of the crack bigger than it is at the surface, which in turn helps filler material bond stronger.
    3. Brush, vacuum and clean – clean up the dust debris that was accumulated during the chiseling process.
    4. Spread the concrete filler – slowly fill the crack. Check your work to see whether the filler has settled. If it looks loose you may have to add some more.
    5. Allow it to cure – allow the patch to cure overnight and then check again if it requires any additional patching.
    6. Seal the concrete – once the crack is patched, it’s a good idea to seal it. Sealants prevent future wear and tear on the concrete such as stains and scuffs. A heavy-duty water based polyurethane sealer is always a good choice and you can easily smooth it on with a broom or a roller depending on how rough or smooth the floor is. Water based sealants generally dry very quickly so you can put on multiple coats of the product in one day.

    Keep an eye out for future cracks and make sure to take care of them before they get bigger!

    DIY Waterproofing

    There are simple DIY tasks you can accomplish to help waterproof your basement and there are also complicated projects that you may need help with. Most homeowners who are looking to tackle waterproofing on their own will initially reach for waterproofing paint, which works for a couple of months but it will eventually begin to peel and it will leave your basement a mess. Not to mention that this paint is not very effective at keeping your basement dry.

    There are three main methods of basement waterproofing including interior sealants, exterior waterproofing and interior and exterior drainage.

    Interior sealants are similar to crack repairs. The most common point of entry for water is through cracks and once you seal these from the inside with a good quality filler then you will block the entryway for moisture and leaks. Although these crack repairs and fillers do prevent small leaks and humidity, they are not a permanent solution nor will they prevent leaks if the hydrostatic pressure (water pressure) is very strong against the foundation of your home.

    You can also paint on waterproof coatings on the inside of your basement. These products adhere to concrete walls and can easily solve minor dampness and condensation issues.

    Exterior waterproofing prevents water from coming into your basement or home. Although this method can be achieved by an experienced and determined DIY-er, it is highly recommended to seek professional assistance for this method. Exterior waterproofing requires full excavation around the home and to the bottom of the foundation. The walls are sealed with waterproof coatings, which in turn direct water into a drain system such as a French drain.

    Installing rain gutters or down spouts are also a form of basement waterproofing. Although it may seem simple and it may be hard to believe, rain gutters are very efficient at keeping your home dry. If you continuously clean your gutters and keep them clear of any debris they will direct any water to the downspouts, which in turn should lead away from your home.

    For homes that experience mild to severe basement leaking, a combination of interior and exterior waterproofing will be best. No two homes are the same and each situation is different, so it is important to evaluate your personal situation and pick the right solution for your problem. Interior and exterior waterproofing is a combination of waterproof sealers and drainage systems such as a sump pump.

    DIY Sump Pump Installation

    Installing a sump pump on your own will definitely save you a lot of money. First off you need to select the best sump pump for your needs – do you want a cast iron pump or a plastic one? You need to pick a pump that is perfect for your basement – not too large and not too small. Make sure it fits in the sump pit and that it won’t continually turn on and off.

    Look for a sump pump with an airtight and soundproof lid. An airtight lid will keep humidity and musty odors out of your basement and a soundproof lid will keep the pump quiet.

    Installing a sump pump is not easy and it may take a couple of days to complete the installation. You will need to have the proper tools, strength and determination to get the job done. The hardest part of installing sump pumps is breaking through the floor, and if you don’t have a jackhammer then this job may be even tougher than you think.

    How to Fix a Wet Basement

    So you followed all the steps, took preventive measures and yet you still ended up with a leaky or wet basement. No worries, the cleanup is a hassle, but it’s not hard. If you live in an area that is prone to heavy rain and storms check your basement often so you can catch a problem before it gets really bad.

    It’s important to act quickly as soon as you notice water in your basement. Check for any live electricity and shut off power to that part of the house. Try to find out where the water is coming from – through a window, the floor, from a crack in the wall, etc.… Try to catch the water in a bucket before you start your cleanup.

    Remove any damaged items and hang them to dry. Make sure to set them in a well-ventilated area so they don’t catch mold. Once you’ve cleared space to work in remove the water from the basement. If there is a lot of standing water the best tool to work with will be a pool pump. If that’s not an option use buckets. Once you’ve thrown out the majority of the water soak up the rest with a mop.

    Once you’ve gotten rid of the water use fans for a couple of days to completely dry out the area. When your basement is dry spray it with disinfectant to keep it from developing any dangerous mold or mildew.

    Some things to Consider Before Taking on a DIY Project

    Before you decide to tackle a DIY basement project make sure to thoroughly research all of your options. Although there are certain projects that can be very pricy when working with a professional company, n ot all basement waterproofing is expensive. Most companies will also offer free consultations.

    If you do decide to DIY be prepared with the right tools and equipment. Understand that basement waterproofing is not easy and that it will take a lot of stamina and strength to get the job done right. Also keep in mind that if you don’t achieve optimal results the first time around, it will probably cost you more to fix now than it would have had you hired a professional ahead of time.

    Triad Basement Waterproofing has been in business for more than 27 years and we are very familiar with all types of basement problems. If you have any questions regarding waterproofing or basement repair please connect with us so we can assist you.

    We are also happy to consult on your project and give you a free estimate as well as 15% off your first work order. Contact us today so we can get started and protect your basement from any future moisture and flooding issues.

  • Finding the Best Basement Waterproofing Services

    Finding the Best Basement Waterproofing Services

    We believe that most homeowners who own properties with basements understand that basements need to be maintained and taken care of – especially those who have had to deal with leaky and wet basements.

    It’s good that people are becoming aware of the issues and risks associated with leaky basements, the problem now is they are not sure what to do about it.

    Should you hire a professional or do it yourself?

    Do you need exterior as well as interior waterproofing?

    What exactly is a sump pump and what does it do?

    Homeowners know that they need to take preventive measures to secure their basements and they need guidance in finding the best basement waterproofing services. There are different methods of basement waterproofing and other preventive measures to take advantage of. This does not mean that you need to invest in every service available for your home.

    Every home and basement is unique and there are different solutions to every current or potential problem. Every basement waterproofing company is also different from one another and they adopt different ways of accomplishing their services. Each company will tell you that they are the best and their products work better than the rest.

    Basement Waterproofing Systems

    What to Look for in a Basement Waterproofing Company

    Here is what you can do to find the best basement waterproofing services as well as the top basement waterproofing companies to work with.

    Experience

    Although newer companies can be just as efficient as a company that has been in business for more than 50 years, there’s always a sense of peace knowing that the company you are working with has done the job a million times over without any issues. However, you want to be careful about workers who have waterproofed a basement so many times that they do it on autopilot. You don’t want someone who is overly confident and careless.

    Referrals & References

    Ask your neighbors and friends about their basement waterproofing experiences. Ask for referrals and recommendations. It’s easier to trust someone who has already dealt with basement waterproofing than trying to find someone on your own. This way, you can also blame your neighbor if the job doesn’t go as well as they had described. In order to double check and make sure this doesn’t happen, ask the company to provide a list of references and actually call the people on that list.

    Online Research

    There are many review websites you can check to help you find the best basement waterproofing services. Use Google, Yelp, Angie’s List, Consumer Reviews or the Better Business Bureau. Anyone can post anything online nowadays so just be smart about your online research. If a company has a five star rating, but only one review then that means you need to do some extra research to confirm the positive review.

    Look for a Company that Offers Multiple Services

    There are multiple ways to solve basement issues since there are different causes for individual problems. Look for a full service company that offers a wide variety of services such as basement waterproofing, crack repair, sump pump installation, structural repair, drainage solutions and others. Stay away from those who offer a one-size-fits-all solution.

    Connect with Industry Workers

    Try contacting individuals who are familiar with the industry such as real estate agents, home inspectors and builders. If a basement waterproofing company has a good reputation these individuals will know about it. Good news travels fast, bad news travels even faster.

    Make Sure Services Come with a Warranty

    Warranties are put in place to protect you. Without a warranty a company can quickly smear some waterproof sealant in your basement that really won’t protect much and call it a day. If there is no warranty, when your basement floods a month later you can’t do anything about it except hand over more money to have it fixed. A warranty saves you if something goes wrong with a service you paid for so you don’t have to invest more money on a bad job. Triad offers a transferable lifetime warranty on all services!

    Work With Triad! We Really are the Best

    Just kidding. Although our team has more than 27 years of experience, you should be just as diligent when researching and working with us as you would be if you were researching another company.

    The best way to feel comfortable with a contractor is to be as certain as possible that the service you are seeking and paying for will be done efficiently and effectively.

    If you have any questions about the services that Triad offers or if you would like to learn more about our company, our history and our track record please don’t hesitate to contact us.

    We would be more than happy to answer all of your questions and assuage your fears about leaky basements.

  • Basement Waterproofing Do’s and Don’ts

    Basement Waterproofing Do’s and Don’ts

    Describing a wet basement as unpleasant is an understatement. A wet, leaky and musty or even a flooded basement is basically one of the worst nightmares to deal with for a homeowner – especially during cold winter months. Not only is it annoying to step into a leaky basement, but it can be hazardous to your health.

    The good news is that a smart homeowner who knows the risks associated with a flooded or wet basement, will take the proper steps to ensure the basement stays dry and warm year round.

    All houses are not created equal, therefore as a homeowner you are responsible for assessing your home and the surrounding area so you can figure out whether your basement is in danger of flooding.

    Honestly, all basements are susceptible to flooding and this isn’t because a basement was poorly built. Simply put, when water accumulates outside of the home’s foundation it keeps putting pressure on the concrete – this is called hydrostatic pressure. One day, after all the pushing, the concrete will give up and crack, which is when water happily rushes in to flood your basement and ruin your furniture.

    The key to keeping your basement dry is good waterproofing and proper drainage. The whole system consists of many parts that work together including gutters, downspouts, the slope of the ground around the foundation, sump pumps and more. It’s important to do your homework when investing in waterproofing so you can make sure that you are investing in the right solution for your home.

    Let’s review some simple basement waterproofing do’s and don’ts .

    Flooded Basement

    DO research different methods of waterproofing

    There are three main methods of basement waterproofing and these are interior sealants, exterior waterproofing and drainage. Since each situation, home and basement is different there are different solutions for different issues. A coat or two of a waterproof sealant may be enough for some homes, while others may need to install a French drain, a sump pump and waterproof sealing.

    DON’T use DIY sealants

    The easiest fixes are always temporary. If you visit a home improvement store you will find many options for waterproof methods and sealants boasting to be the best on the market. You will be bombarded with advertising trying to convince you that so and so product is the best and will fix every leaky basement. This is simply not true. We really can’t stress enough that not every wet basement is the same. If you find a small leak and you want to cover it up with a temporary sealant while you concoct a serious plan of action, that’s fine as long as you understand that this is only temporary and the leak will come back.

    DO find the source of the leak

    The best way to fix a leaky basement is to find the source of the water and cut it off. Is the water seeping in through the ground? It is coming in through a window? Is it the foundation of the home? This is the most important step of waterproofing, because unless you cut off the source of the leak and fix it, it will keep coming back.

    DON’T ignore a leak

    The worse thing you can do for your home, your basement and the overall foundation and structure of your home is to ignore a leak. It may seem small and insignificant, but that small crack or leak will get bigger and then you will have an even more serious problem to deal with. Being cheap won’t get you far, it’s better to invest a little bit of money and take care of a problem before it gets worse and you end up having to pay a lot more for damage control. Did you even know that basement waterproofing can save you money in the long run? It can reduce energy costs, save you money on your homeowner’s insurance as well as increase the overall value of your home.

    DO keep your gutters clean

    Who would have thought that clogged gutters could ultimately lead to a flooded basement? Imagine a backed up rain gutter suddenly letting loose and dumping all that water against the foundation of your home. Keep your gutters clean and free from debris and leaves so that the collected water can easily make its way to the downspouts and away from your home.

    DON’T allow your downspouts to direct water around the foundation of your home

    Speaking of downspouts, the whole point of having them is to make sure they keep water away from your home. If your downspout is just shooting water against the foundation of your home it’s more likely to cause a problem than fix it.

    DO call Triad Basement Waterproofing for assistance

    When in doubt, work with a professional company that specializes in all kinds of basement services. Our staff of experts will evaluate your basement and help you figure out what your basement needs to stay dry year round. Maybe you don’t need any waterproofing at all, you’ll never know until you ask. Triad has been around for more than 27 years and our team prides itself on a job well done every time. Give us a call if you have any questions about basement waterproofing , concrete repair or other basement related questions. We look forward to working with you!

  • Buying a Home with a Wet Basement? Know This First

    Buying a Home with a Wet Basement? Know This First

    When you buy a new home you are paying for all the good as well as all of the bad that comes with it.

    It’s very important to thoroughly inspect a property with a professional multiple times over before you sign any contracts so you can make sure that there aren’t any hidden problems that will creep up down the road.

    However, if you find a home that you absolutely love and can’t part with and it has structural or basement issues then you need to educate yourself on what steps you need to take to protect your new home and your belongings.

    Before you buy a home with a wet basement make sure to ask the seller of the home about any underlying issues that may be causing leaks and moisture seepage. The seller should fully disclose all information about the home and you should also hire a qualified home inspector to give you a full report about the home.

    Wet Basement

    Does Your New Home to-be Have a Wet Basement?

    We’ve discussed how to prevent a wet basement and how to fix a basement after it has been flooded, but we have yet to touch on inheriting a basement that has issues with leaking or flooding.

    The most important thing to remember is that if there are dampness issues with your new basement, you really can’t afford to let them linger. There are many dangers of wet basements such as deteriorating the overall structure and foundation of your home, contributing to hazardous mold growth, damaging your furniture and personal belongings and other unpleasant issues. These issues can ultimately affect air quality and your health.

    Regardless of what you will be using the basement for whether it’s going to be storage space, a guest room or entertainment center it is still a room in your home and as a responsible homeowner you need to take care of it. So what should you do when buying a home with a wet basement? Let’s find out.

    Find out what is causing the dampness

    In order to figure out why your new basement is leaky or damp, you need to find the source of the moisture. There are many ways that water can find its way into your home. Through windows, wall cracks, through the floor or in the seams between the wall and the floor are most common entry points. Water can’t force its way into your home, so it takes the path of least resistance and looks for a weak spot in your foundation. The underlying cause of a leaky basement is hydrostatic pressure. Water builds up in the soil outside your basement walls and eventually when the concrete can’t hold its own anymore it begins to crack, which allows water to enter into your basement.

    Learn about how a wet basement can affect your home and your health

    You may think that a wet basement isn’t a big deal. Most people who have never had a home with a basement before assume that it’s leaky and cold down there anyway. Before you commit to buying a home with a wet basement you need to understand how a wet basement will affect your home and the health of you and your family. Humid and damp spaces are breeding grounds for dangerous mold growth. Not to mention that if there is a leak and it’s not taken care of as soon as possible, it will damage the foundation of the home, which in turn can lead to serious structural issues.

    Invest in basement waterproofing

    If you are dead set on purchasing a home with a wet basement make sure to invest in basement waterproofing. Before you close escrow you could also negotiate with the seller of the property to lower the purchase price of the home or get a credit to fix the leaky basement. It’s better to be safe than sorry and take all precautionary measures to ensure your basement and your home stay dry and warm. There are different methods of basement waterproofing that will help protect your home from leaks and floods. Each home and each basement is different so one solution may work for you while another won’t. This is also why it is important to consult with a professional waterproofing company. While many people decide to try the do-it-yourself option, it’s always safer to hire a professional, especially if you have never dealt with a wet basement before.

    Triad Basement Waterproofing has more than 27 years of experience and the professional staff guarantees a personalized solution for each basement as well as a job well done every single time. If you are looking for a dedicated and experienced company to help you fix and secure the wet basement of your new home, contact Triad today. The staff will be more than happy to answer all of your questions and evaluate your basement.

  • Is Interior Waterproofing Different from Exterior Waterproofing?

    Is Interior Waterproofing Different from Exterior Waterproofing?

    Is Interior Waterproofing Different from Exterior Waterproofing? Triad Waterproofing Gaithersburg

    As a homeowner, the state of your home is important to you. Not only because it’s a big financial investment, but also because it is your home. Remember how excited you were the day you signed on the dotted line and received your keys? Why wouldn’t you put in the time and effort to make sure your home is in nearly perfect condition?

    If you live in an area prone to heavy rainfall, snowstorms and heavy snow melts, then you are aware of the damage this kind of weather can bring to your home and your basement. Being the responsible homeowner that you are, you have decided to invest in basement waterproofing for your home. But there are so many options to choose from and there are various methods of basement waterproofing to think about. You also have to think about hiring a professional to do the job for you. And honestly, is interior waterproofing different from exterior waterproofing? Well, let’s find out shall we?

    The Difference Between Interior and Exterior Waterproofing

    Exterior Waterproofing

    Exterior waterproofing is the first defense against water and consists of gutters and downspouts that collect water and lead it away from your home. This is why it is so important to always keep your gutters clean. Another important part of exterior waterproofing includes a waterproof membrane, which is installed around the foundation of your home to seal out moisture so that the concrete doesn’t absorb it, crack and allow leaks. Next is an exterior drainage system, like a French drain. This system can require some work, because it requires excavation along the foundation of the home.

    Drain tiles are fitted into the trench around the home, surrounded by gravel and then the entire system is covered with soil. The drain tiles will carry water away from the foundation before it has a chance to enter the basement. Although this method does involve some excavation, it can be well worth it.

    Exterior waterproofing is also more expensive than interior waterproofing, because it requires more work and more material, but it efficiently stops water from getting close to the foundation of your home. When your foundation stays dry, it doesn’t get weak and damaged and it won’t crack to allow water leaks inside your basement or your home. So in turn, a pricy exterior waterproofing system ends up being reasonable, because it saves you money in the long run.

    Interior Waterproofing

    Interior waterproofing makes sure that water that leaks into the basement is re-routed out and away from the home. These interior drainage systems are made up of pipes and drains that catch leaks or are installed under the foundation to collect excess groundwater. This excess water is directed to a sump pit, which is basically a large basin that stores water in your basement. Then comes a sump pump , which is a water pump that sits inside the sump pit and pumps water out of the basement and away from your home. Sump pumps usually begin automatically pumping water when it reaches a certain level in the sump pit. Most sump pumps come with a back-up battery so they can continue working in case of a power outage or during a severe storm.

    Another method of interior waterproofing is made up of vapor barriers. These are made up of plastic or foil sheets and are installed along the walls of your basement to seal out moisture. Apart from an interior drainage system, interior waterproofing also works to seal any cracks and leaks that are letting water into the basement. These can easily be sealed so that they don’t allow any moisture or humidity to accumulate in your home. Investing in a good interior waterproofing system can greatly reduce the risk of a flood in your basement. These drainage systems are easy to install and generally cost less than exterior waterproofing systems.

    Interior and exterior waterproofing both have their pros and cons. Interior waterproofing can only be used to remove water that has already accumulated in your basement, so they are not effective at preventing water from coming getting into the basement in the first place. Exterior waterproofing can be expensive, but it keeps water away from your foundation and from getting inside your home or into your basement. Regardless of the method you decide on, what’s important is that you are making the effort to keep your home warm and dry. If you have any questions about waterproofing methods, or if you are interested in interior and exterior waterproofing for your home, contact the experts at Triad Basement Waterproofing for more information.