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