As a homeowner, one of the biggest nightmares you may face is having water in your basement. Whether it’s due to heavy rain, a burst pipe, or structural issues, excess water can cause significant damage and put a dent in your wallet if not addressed immediately. Not only does it ruin your belongings and lead to mold growth, but it also decreases the value of your property.
Fortunately, there are numerous preventative measures you can take to reduce the risk of water issues in your basement. In this blog post, we’ll explore different ways to protect your home from potential flooding and provide tips on how to keep your basement dry and safe for years to come. Don’t wait until disaster strikes – read on to find out how you can tackle this common homeowner’s problem and save yourself time, money, and stress!
Water in The Basement: A Common Problem
Water in the basement is a common problem for homeowners. It’s typically caused by a combination of factors, like poor drainage, heavy rainfall, or even plumbing issues.
But why is it such a big deal? Well, for starters, water can cause serious damage to your home’s structure. It can seep into walls and floors, leading to rot, mold, and mildew. And let’s not forget about the potential health hazards if mold goes unchecked. A wet basement is also just plain annoying. It can limit your use of the space, ruin your belongings, and create a musty, unpleasant odor.
Luckily, there are steps you can take to prevent basement water damage. One of the most important is to make sure your home’s drainage systems are in good working order. That means regularly cleaning your gutters and downspouts, and ensuring that water is being channeled away from your foundation. Other helpful tips include sealing any cracks or gaps in your foundation walls, installing a sump pump system, and investing in a dehumidifier to keep moisture levels under control.
What Are the Risks of Water in The Basement?
Water in the basement is a problem in and of itself. It is also a sign of additional problems, and you may deal with risks on multiple levels. Here are a few of the risks to consider.
As water builds up in the soil with no way to drain off, hydrostatic pressure can build up and push against the basement walls.(Water also causes expansive soil to swell, which can also push against the foundation.)
Hydrostatic pressure can cause the foundation walls to bow and buckle. It can also cause cracks to form, and any existing cracks offer an opening for water to be pushed through with that pressure. As those cracks expand, the foundation walls get weaker.
For mold to grow, it requires moisture, air, and food. It also needs an environment at the right temperature and the ability to grow unimpeded. Your damp, dingy basement provides the perfect growing environment for mold.
Some types of mold can have a negative impact on your health. Because of the stack effect, mold in the basement can enter the house, leading to respiratory problems and many other issues.
If you have higher humidity levels in the basement, you may notice that some appliances rust quickly. This includes washers and dryers, freezers, and other such items kept in the basement.
High Energy Bills
One of the most common complaints contractors hear when a basement needs waterproofing is rising energy bills. The moist air from the basement causes higher humidity levels in your home. It takes extra energy to heat or cool humid air. You may blame the power company, but it could be your basement causing the higher bills.
Common Repairs Needed Before Waterproofing Your Basement
If you have water in the basement, not all is lost. With the right contractor, you can have the basement waterproofed, and it can be a convenient and usable part of the home. You will also reap the benefits of having a dry basement, with healthier air throughout the house.
Before any basement waterproofing takes place, however, repairs are often necessary. These repairs correct the issues that may be occurring and causing damage to your foundation. They can also keep the home dry after the waterproofing takes place.
Water is a big problem for the basement, and if you have water in the basement, the issue is advanced. The problem is that the water is not only inside the basement but also surrounding the basement in the soil and could even be under the slab.
Different types of drainage systems may be installed to help prevent this issue and to keep the moisture from building up around the basement walls and under the slab.
On the outside of the basement, a French drain can be installed that gathers water from the soil and moves it to a lower area or perhaps into a sump pit, where it can be pumped out to an area away from the foundation. A basement drain tile system can also be installed in the basement, typically around the edge and beneath the slab.
Sump Pump Installation
It may be necessary to install a sump pump. These pumps are located in the sump pit, and when water reaches a certain level, the pump automatically comes on and pumps water out and away from the basement. These pumps can also have a backup battery system.
Foundation Crack Repair
Any cracks in the foundation walls can be repaired to keep water from seeping in. Repairing the crack may involve using carbon fiber straps to strengthen the wall to keep the cracks from expanding. Epoxy can be injected into the crack to seal it permanently.
What is Basement Waterproofing?
The basement can be waterproofed after any necessary repairs take place. Generally speaking, basement waterproofing involves using a heavy polyurethane sheeting that covers and seals the walls.
A dehumidifier may also be installed to help keep the area dry. After the basement has been waterproofed, it can be used for storage, or you can even use it as a convenient area for additional living space.
It can be worrisome when you have water in the basement and are not sure why it is there or what type of damage exists. With the right type of repairs and some basement waterproofing, however, you can correct the issue and have a convenient space available for you and your family.
I spent 20+ years working in construction and maintenance before retiring to the keyboard to do writing full-time. I enjoy spending time with my grandkids and traveling when I’m not writing construction articles.