Basement Waterproofing

What is basement waterproofing?

Waterproofing a basement is a way to prevent water from entering your home’s basement. It is done to protect the concrete foundation and the house’s structure from water damage and other related problems. The process typically involves identifying the source of the water, addressing the water issue, and applying various techniques such as sealants, coatings, and drainage systems to keep water out. Basement waterproofing is an essential service that can help homeowners prevent costly water damage and maintain a safe and healthy home environment.

A completed basement waterproofing system; drying concrete along the wall with drainage tiles sticking above the edge.

Why do basements have water problems at all?

Since basements are underground, they have more square feet in contact with the soil than other types of foundations, like crawl spaces or a slab. This exposure to the ground can be a significant source of moisture entering your home, especially considering hydrostatic pressure (the pressure exerted by still water to move). Hydrostatic pressure can cause water to enter through cracks and gaps in the foundation walls and floor. When the soil around the foundation becomes saturated with water, hydrostatic pressure builds up, pushing water into the basement.

A leaky basement may be more difficult to notice than one entering the homes’ living spaces, allowing wet basement issues more time to worsen. While it may be easier to see leaks in a finished basement, other times, basement moisture builds up out of sight.

A puddle from a leak on the bare concrete floor of a basement.

What are some common signs that water is getting into my basement?

The most common signs are dampness or standing water on the basement floor or wet basement walls. Water is likely seeping through foundation cracks or poorly sealed windows or doors. Another typical sign is a musty or moldy smell in the basement, which can indicate the presence of mold or mildew caused by excess moisture. Apparent signs, like basement flooding, are easy to spot but indicate a more serious problem,  

Other indications that your damp basement may be leaking include water stains, cracks in the foundation walls or concrete floor, efflorescence (a white powdery substance) on the walls or floor, rust on metal appliances or fixtures, bowed or buckled concrete walls, mold growth, and insects or pests in the below-grade area.

These signs suggest water is entering your basement, and an inspection by an expert team at a reputable waterproofing company is needed.

What can homeowners do to keep their basements from getting wet?

One of the most effective ways for homeowners to prevent water from getting in is to address poor drainage around the foundation of their homes. This can be done by ensuring that gutters and downspouts are debris-free, the ground around the foundation slopes away, installing window wells with covers, and extending drains to pull downspout water away from the home’s foundation. These steps prevent water pooling near the house, reducing the chances of structural damage.

Additionally, homeowners can regularly inspect the foundation for cracks or structural damage and repair them promptly for protection from water infiltration. Together, these are the best tools for a dry basement.

What basement waterproofing solutions do you use?

Several methods can be used for waterproofing basements, depending on your home’s specific issues and needs. One standard method is interior waterproofing, which involves applying a waterproof membrane or coating to the inside walls and floors of the basement. This can be done using materials like epoxy, polyurethane, or other sealants, which are applied in multiple layers to create a barrier against moisture and water seepage. Another interior option is a French drain that redirects water away using a trench filled with gravel or rock and a perforated pipe covered with filter fabric.

Another approach is an exterior solution, which involves excavating the soil around the foundation to apply a waterproof coating or sheet membrane to the outside walls of the foundation. This method can be more invasive and costly. Still, it can prevent water from entering more effectively, especially in areas with high water tables, heavy rains, or frequent flooding.

Other methods that may be used include installing a sump pump system to remove water from the basement, repairing cracks or leaks in the exterior walls, and installing drainage systems around the home to prevent water from accumulating near the basement foundation.

Each foundation repair solution varies because the ideal product for one leaky basement foundation won’t necessarily work for another type of foundation problem.

A sump pump bucket in the ground with plastic pipes dumping water from a French drain system as part of a basement waterproofing system.

How long does the process take?

The timetable of a professional installation can vary depending on the severity of the water issue and the method used to fix it. A routine installation may take one to three days, while a more complex job may take longer. Excavation and installation of proper drainage and sump pumps can take the longest. This is because it involves heavy equipment and digging, which requires more extensive labor by the install team.

Our experienced basement waterproofing contractors will give you a detailed estimate of your project’s timeline during the initial consultation.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the cost of basement waterproofing?

The cost for basement waterproofing varies based on the solution being implemented and how many square feet of waterproofing products are needed.

Is waterproofing paint a valuable tool for keeping a basement dry?

Waterproof paint has some significant limitations; it does not address the underlying causes of water intrusion and can break down over time, allowing water to find its way through existing gaps or cracks.

Where do you provide waterproofing services?

Ready to go?

An inspection by basement waterproofing specialists is the first step of the process. Contact us to schedule a free inspection today!