Specific basement waterproofing measures are necessary to fully protect basements and homes. There is no easy way to best waterproof your basement. Therefore, various types of products and techniques have been developed to waterproof basements, along with foundation walls. The best approach to waterproofing a basement normally involves a combination of techniques, which have been broken down below.

Exterior waterproofing treatments are designed to stop moisture but not water leaks, when a home is being built. That is when the basement walls are usually accessible and clean, which creates an ideal condition for applying a waterproof coating. The asphalt-based compound is a traditional exterior coating that is applied by brush or spray equipment for a new foundation. It is important to point out that this treatment is damp proofing and not waterproofing, but the fact is that no liquid can enter the basement through gaps, cracks and holes left by form ties.

Waterproofing Requirements and Protection

It is a code requirement to apply a damp proofing treatment in many Canadian provinces to the exterior of basements. The builder is also required to install perforated plastic drain pipe near the footing to carry water away from the foundation, but these are not always effective. The drain line can be crushed during the back fill process, plus they can clog quickly with silt, water, and roots.

For a wet basement, exterior coating is used as a defense instead of a waterproof coating.

The paints and films are used to increase hydrostatic pressure and decrease the potential for leaks. The advancements in technology associated with paints has significant implications. In recent years, paints, sealers, and waterproof coatings are better than ever before. Some foundation waterproofing compounds are designed to be applied on the exterior of the foundation wall, while others are meant for interior applications, but with the same goal of establishing an impermeable barrier to water.

Technique Problems and Solutions

Unfortunately, these basement waterproofing techniques have their own challenges which can hinders their levels of success. By holding water back, there is a major buildup of hydrostatic pressure that occurs against the basement wall, as well as the thin membrane or coating. This water, under high pressure, can lead to bowing or buckling of the foundation walls. This can cause cracks that become the initial leakage points.

Drainage systems stop leaks by lowering hydrostatic pressure. This is one of the techniques which have proven effective in keeping basements dry in an interior drain system that is connected to a sump pump (Read: What is a Sump Pump?). This technique actually harnesses the power of hydrostatic pressure instead of fighting it. Unlike an exterior drainage system where the water and soil could cause issues, an interior French drain system is developed inside basement systems, meaning they cannot clog with plant roots or silt because of the location.


Watch Video: 4 Major Waterproofing Techniques

The bottom line: damp-proof the exterior of your foundation, and install an interior drain and sump pump system. It is extremely important to have two lines of defense instead of one. A well installed damp proof coating on the exterior of the foundation help to prevent moisture from seeping through the foundation walls.

wet basement solutionsThis summer brought a particularly bad set of rain storms with it, and people from the East Coast to the Midwest experienced the damage and destruction that often accompanies these torrential downpours. As the last few days of summer come to an end, many are focused on the home repairs this summer has left them with.

Common Fixes for Heavy Rain Flooding

If your house was a victim of heavy rains and flooding, it may be in need of the following fixes:

Wet Basement Solutions

Water damage will affect some 90% of basements, according to experts, and if you experienced major rain storms this summer, your basement is probably one of them. A wet basement can cause extensive damage to furniture, carpets and floorboards and can also lead to expensive repairs. Therefore, it is essential to clear the water out and prevent it from coming back in. Some wet basement solutions include installing a basement sump pump, basement window well covers and waterproofing interior basement walls.

Landscaping

Heavy rains can cause major flooding in your yard, especially if your yard doesn’t drain well. Not only does this mean you have a pond in the back of your house all summer, but it can also mean expensive damage to your home’s foundation. There are a few things you can do to ensure your yard keeps water away from your house. Your yard should slope away from your house so that water does not sit around the foundation. If it doesn’t, you should consider having someone come to look at and fix your lot grading. You can also install a French drain system, which diverts water away from your yard through a series of underground pipes.

Gutter Repairs

Gutters are meant to clear water away from your home, but when they become clogged with sticks and leaves, they can’t perform this essential task. What’s worse, this sitting water can leak into your home and cause all sorts of water damage. It is important to make sure your gutters are cleared of any debris. You should also ensure that there is no structural damage to your gutters. If gutters have holes or they are not leading water a safe distance from your foundation, make sure to fix them right away.

If you were a victim of torrential downpours this summer, it is a good idea to look around both the inside and outside of your house for potential damage. You may need to think about wet basement solutions, fixing your yard and repairing damaged gutters.
Fixing problems sooner rather than later can save you from bigger, more expensive issues down the road.

Mold can be a serious problem if allowed to develop inside of a home. This is because it gradually destroys the areas where it colonizes, potentially creating health problems for the people living in your home. Molds create allergens, which are normally substances that cause allergic reactions, as well as toxic substances that can harm your entire body. If you touch or inhale the mold, you can easily develop some allergic reactions.

How Mold Can Affect You

Continuous exposure to mold spores can irritate your eyes, nose, skin, throat, and lungs, as well as triggering asthma attacks on asthmatic individuals. People who have allergies, immune system deficiencies, as well as respiratory problems, can be highly susceptible to the dangers of molds.

They normally grow from tiny spores which cannot be seen by the naked eye, but still exist in both indoor and outdoor air. Outdoor molds begin to grow once they land on a wet surface, but indoor molds grow once they land on a liquefied surface, since molds require water to grow.

Another issue that mold creates is diminishing the value of the property. Mold is commonly known to thrive in humid, wet, and dank environments. The basement is the perfect candidate to perpetuate growth, hence the most important thing needed when organizing a new or existing home is to have a waterproofing system installed in the basement. And even if there is one, you need to check that it is not in the dire need of repair.

Stopping the Spread of Mold Is Key

Basement waterproofing is one of the most important things you need to do. There are various systems out there, but one of the most common is the French drain system. When you have this system installed, as soon as water starts seeping into the basement, it will go into the tube, then be directed towards the sump pump where is automatically pushed away from your home.

There is also several foundation repairs that you need to do, such as fixing cracks or dealing with a shifting foundation, or even bowing walls. You will not be able to fix this things on your own so you need to call in professionals to do the job in a fast and efficient manner. However the foundation needs to be repaired right away to prevent the building instability.

This needs to be done as soon as you notice any cracks, popped nails, or other various unexplained changes in the foundation of your building. While these are some of the things you need to initially do when you move into a new place, you also need to be constantly aware that things can happen.


Watch Video: Health Effects of Mold Exposure

Just don’t ignore any problems that you notice, and make sure the issues are fixed as soon as possible.

Despite homeowners knowing the information regarding molds, they often make the mistake of leaving water and dumpiness in their basement until the situation deteriorates. Water damage tends to get even worse with time, so you need to make sure you do not give mold a chance to survive.

fix basement leaksFoundation repair contractors want you to know that every house is subject to basement leaks. No matter how skilled your home builder was, there is bound to be a few cracks in the foundation of your home eventually, which may lead to basement leaks.

Causes for basement leaks:

  1. Claw Bowl Effect – This occurs when the more porous water around the house collects rainwater and ends up settling, which causes the water to settle with it causing a depression. The water then travels down this depression and pools in areas around your foundation.
  2. Clogged Drain – A footing drain is what you see outside of the house’s foundation and funnels water away from the house. The drain is porous and collects excess water, but if this is clogged, the waters ends up pooling either in the drain or at the entrance to the drain.
  3. Drainage Breakdown – This occurs when the footing drain is still clogged and the water doesn’t drain anymore, so it builds up in the backfill. If the backfill is saturated with water, this can cause hydrostatic pressure that ends up pushing the water into your basement.

Troubles of leaky basements

If a basement leaks, it can damage or ruin your carpet, building structure, and any electronic equipment you have in the room. You should keep expensive electronics off the floor to prevent any further damage. A leaky basement can also create mold problems and the costs for repairing a foundation are expensive.

How to fix basement leaks

If you find yourself in a leaky basement situation, there are a few ways to fix basement leaks. First, you should always call a professional, they will have better wet basement solutions for you and your home.

If you want to fix basement leaks yourself, the first thing to do would be to dig a six foot deep trench around the outside of your house in order to expose the foundation bricks and any pipes.

After pressure washing the bricks and letting them dry, you can then patch the cracks and install or update any necessary drainage to stop basement leaks in the future. For example, installing a french drain can be a great solution because it offers a better way to collect water.

Preventing basement leaks

If you don’t want to fix basement leaks, you should probably consider a few important preventative methods.

Be sure to clear out your gutters regularly — especially after the fall — this will make sure rainwater drains adequately from the roof of your home. Many basements leak due to sump pump issues. Prevent your sump pump from backing up by testing and inspecting it on a routine basis. Other home owners have sewer issues that lead to leaks. A blackwater valve can prevent water damage by automatically closing if the sewer backs up.

Along with cleaning out the gutters of your home, be sure to clear away any pooling water from your home after any snow or ice melts. Do this as winter comes to an end and you will have a much more enjoyable spring.

For any other preventative methods or if you have a leak, make sure you call a professional to get your basement waterproofed.

water in the basementOne common problem that homeowners face is water in the basement. A damp or watery basement can cause all sorts of trouble, from damaged internal structures to expensive home foundation repairs. The basement is the room most prone to water damage, and keeping water out can be a real pain. However, knowing what causes water in the basement and how to prevent it can help homeowners protect their property from the damaging effects of water.

List of Problems and Solutions

Here are some of the most common causes of water in the basement and easy solutions:

Leaks

Problem: Basement leaks can lead to extensive damage, and unfortunately the source of the problem can be hard to locate. Leaks can be caused by malfunctioning gutters, internal pipe bursts and water that pools around the foundation of the home.

Solution: To fix basement leaks, clean out gutters regularly to make sure that they are draining properly, and ensure that gutter pipes are pointed away from the house. To keep water from gathering around the foundation, clear snow and melting ice away from the home’s exterior. Basement window well covers can also help to ensure that water doesn’t build up around the exterior of a home.

Cracks

Problem: Cracks in basement walls, windows, doors and floors are another common cause of a wet basement. Cracks that are left unattended to can grow over time, letting even more water in and causing more interior water damage.

Solution: Keep an eye out for any noticeable cracks and fill them in right away. Small cracks in basement walls can be fixed by applying a concrete sealant. As cracks get bigger, it is a good idea to call a waterproofing expert to fix the problem to ensure the issue is taken care of properly.

Condensation

Problem: Condensation in the basement can cause a number of problems, and when it is not taken care of it can lead to the growth of hazardous mold within the home. This issue is most common in the summer when the air inside the basement is much cooler than the air outdoors.

Solution: One way to deal with excess moisture problems is to install a dehumidifier in the basement. A dehumidifier will remove excess moisture from the air and prevent condensation from building up on basement walls.

Taking a proactive approach to a wet basement is the best way to prevent major water damage to a home.

Homeowners who are aware of the common causes of water damage and know how to prevent them have a better of chance of protecting their property and keeping their families safe.

Is Basement Waterproofing Available When It’s Cold?

In Canada, it’s normal that the winter lasts over a few months. In this period, the foundation will adhere to a pattern of constant freezing and thawing. This eventually makes a gap around the house, making cellar leakage a higher chance. Additionally, when the weather gets warmer, the melting of snow and continuous rain may lead to leaking from the basement also. For all these reasons, basement waterproofing isn’t just readily done from the wintertime; however, it’s also a perfect time to protect against leaking.

What Kind Of Basement Waterproofing Is Available In Winter?

Basement waterproofing in winter can be completed inside or outside, below are fixes which are accomplished easily in the wintertime.

  • Exterior waterproofing
  • Interior waterproofing
  • Exterior and interior installation of drain and weeping tiles
  • Exterior and interior underpinning
  • Sump pump installations

Any or all the above-mentioned solutions could function to avoid a leaky basement. If you can’t do yourself, basement waterproofing companies usually have more time in the winter because it’s off-season. Though waterproofing is challenging from the winter months, it’s still an essential measure to protect against leaking.

Why Can Waterproofing A Basement Be Difficult In The Winter?

There are lots of reasons why basement waterproofing could be challenging in the winter months if handled by untrained crews, for example:

  • It is hard to dig through frozen soil around the outside if not done properly
  • The mound of soil following excavation takes place has the possibility of freezing
  • If a base wall or footing is left available to freezing temperatures for too long, frost may creep in the structure and also damage it
  • Snow and soil can be blended, making it extremely tough to clean up the site after the conclusion

Despite the challenges of basement waterproofing in the winter, it’s still essential to protect the basement from damage brought on by freezing temperatures. Choosing the proper contractor for winter waterproofing is a must.

In case you have any questions or need basement waterproofing services, contact Aquatech Waterproofing today!

Basements are some of the spaces in our houses that have proven to be difficult to manage when it comes to dampness and levels of moisture content. In some, there is actually a probability that water may fill about two inches of floor space. It is with this in mind that innovative companies have come up with membranes with an aim to make these spaces more hospitable. Waterproofing membranes have been around for some time now. With time, the designs and redesigns have improved, as has the ease of installation, plus the costs have also come down.

Types of Waterproofing Membranes

Waterproofing membranes are mainly used to prevent moisture from seeping through into the basement, while at the same time making the room warmer to make it more comfortable. It was normal before the 1990s for there to be a requirement to leave space between the membrane and the wall lining to prevent condensation on the membrane. Since the 1990s, the advice has generally changed to no ventilation between the membrane and wall. While condensation still happened, this was touted to have reduced the level of condensation.

Insulating Membrane

Insulating a membrane involves having insulation in front of a membrane, allowing the insulation to keep the membrane and moisture behind it cooler, and reducing the transfer of cold conditions into the room.

This kind of membrane is the one method of waterproofing that also aims to increase the heat of the room. If the room is warmer and the wall and outside conditions are cooler, then insulating the membrane makes the room warmer and the wall and space between the wall and the membrane cooler.

This still runs the risk of higher amount of condensation, due to the moisture condensing on the cold wall surface. Although, currently dehumidifiers come in handy and are available inexpensively in hardware stores, the condensation problem may still manifest itself. An insulated membrane is the complete opposite of insulating a membrane.

Insulating Membrane

An insulated membrane does not come as an afterthought, it is integrated in the building of the wall.

The insulation is behind the membrane, allowing for the option of the room to be warm and the wall cold, the moisture in between the wall and the membrane will be kept warm and thus does not run the risk of condensation.

This is a better option as opposed to having the insulation in front of the membrane. These membranes should be used in conjunction with other types of waterproofing equipment, such as sump tank and sump pump that can be instrumental in ridding the area of water content. When installed correctly, the membranes and an automated sump system work hand in hand to ensure that nearly all of the moisture content is drained out of the system. Alternatively, electric dehumidifiers can be used to remove the humidity in the basement, so should be installed strategically.

This is a piece of waterproofing that has come of age and that is encouraged in the building codes of some localities for efficient waterproof basements.

Don’t let your basement be uninhabitable; use waterproofing membranes.

stop basement leaksFor many people, the basement of their home can be likened to a dark, musky dungeon that is to be avoided at all costs. As scary and unappealing as basements can be, isn’t this just a little bit sad?

We often spend a lot of time and money fixing up the other rooms in our home, yet we neglect the one room that is in need of the most TLC! There are many things you can do with all of that space, so instead of pretending like it doesn’t exist, why not do a basement renovation? Turn the room that no one wants to step foot into the room that no one wants to leave!

Ways to Renovate Your Basement

Below are three fun ways you can renovate your basement, and make it the place to be. But before we go there, a quick note on preparing your basement for its grand transformation:

The room most likely to suffer from water damage in your home is the basement, and there are a number of things that can cause water damage. Plumbing issues, high levels of condensation, foundation damage and poor landscaping can all contribute to water damage in your basement. It is important to stop basement leaks before putting your hard earned money into a newly remodeled basement.

You can stop basement leaks a few different ways, including installing a french drain system, blackwater valve, basement window well covers and a battery backup sump pump. Water can cause significant and costly repairs, so don’t skimp when it comes to preventing water damage in your basement!

List of Three Fun Ideas for Renovating Your Basement:

  1. Movie Theater – Turning your basement into a movie theater is one great way to make it the coolest room in your home. You can include a large screen, comfy chairs and a projector to make your basement just like a real movie theater.
  2. Game Room – This is a great option if you have young kids. Pool tables, air hockey machines and dart boards are all great toys to include in your very own game room.
  3. Guest Room – Entertain friends and family frequently? You can turn your basement into a luxury guest room to make sure your guests are comfortable when they visit. Having the guest room in the basement adds a sense of privacy to give your guests the best experience possible.

basement leaks repairLeaks in the basement, in the short term, might mean just a little puddle on the floor. However, over time, water getting into your home could lead to a number of serious problems, especially if you do not invest in the proper basement leaks repairs promptly. Not only can foul odors that permeate throughout your home develop, but mold can begin to grow — mold that eventually lead to your family getting sick. In serious cases, you might even need expensive concrete foundation repairs.

Note: Both interior and exterior basement waterproofing are useful for keeping the basement dry, but you should always think about why water is entering your home in the first place.

Here is a list of reasons why water would leak into your house:

  • Busted Pipes
    Perhaps the problem that is easiest to both find and fix, is a leaky pipe. Over time, pipes can rust and seals can wear down. When that happens, every time you shower you could be adding to the amount of water that leeks into your basement. Luckily, leaky pipes are usually a simple problem that can be repaired quickly.
  • Wet Weather
    Heavy rainstorms or piles of snow melting quickly could cause water to pool up when the ground gets completely saturated. If a basement is not waterproofed, water could seep down not into the dirt, but into cracks and crevices of your basement. Water itself could lead to corrosion , but if it freezes, serious damage could develop. It might be harder to find exactly where the water is getting in, but quick repairs are vital for stopping problems from growing.
  • Sump Pump Failure
    If your sump pump is not working properly, the water that doesn’t naturally drain out of your home might get backed up and flood your basement. Calling a professional for sump pump repairs, if you don’t know how to fix it yourself, is the only way to avoid the problem again in the future.
  • Sewer Backup
    Most of the time, the basement leaks repairs you’ll need are just for the water that your kitchen sink and shower uses. Generally, the water is clean and, other than the physical damage, it isn’t all that nasty. However, when the sewers are backed up, all kinds of disgusting waste can get into your basement. This might be more rare than other problems, but is not always as easy to deal with.

Damp basements are common, and extra moisture in the air is not necessarily anything you have to worry about. However, if the floor and walls are noticeably wet, the problem might be bigger than you realize. So before issues become too serious and your home’s foundation is at risk, be sure to have a professional provide basement leaks repairs that keep your home dry and minimize damage.

Not many people are familiar with the intricacies of basement waterproofing but largely there are two fundamental approaches to the topic of how to keep water out of your basement.

One approach is to stop it at its’ source, which would be to waterproof externally, while the other is to let the water in and manage it away, which would be interior waterproofing.

Naturally the preferred method of choice is going to be to attack the source but sometimes this isn’t possible and an interior waterproofing solution must be implemented in its’ place. The severity of the issue may also give you no choice but to waterproof externally because the damage or possible damage is that severe. Here we take a look at the differences and benefits to exterior and interior waterproofing to help assist you in deciding which one is best for your basement.

Interior

An interior drain tile system is often chosen when trying to rectify moisture seeping through into your basement. This is done by digging up the area next to the wall, fitting in a plastic pipe that is perforated, installing a membrane against the wall, and connecting this to a sump pump. This will serve to reduce the hydrostatic pressure underneath your property – this is the natural pressure that pushes water in an upward direction towards your floor and ultimately through the cracks therein. If, by chance, water does find its’ way into your basement, a sump pump ensures that it is safely removed in a timely fashion.

Exterior

There are two methods generally used when a basement waterproofing professional is assessing your basement:

a) Waterproof Membrane

One doesn’t need to be a rocket science to understand the logic behind its’ use. A waterproof membrane is produced from an asphalt-modified polyurethane material and is applied over the exterior of the foundation walls to ward off water penetration. While it is easily understood, it is costly to complete and often reserved only for the more severe wet basement problems as it requires the entire foundation to be dug out to allow application of the membrane.

b) Exterior Drain Tile

Much like the interior drain tile system, this one is merely applied on the exterior of the basement wall rather than on the interior side. It functions in the same capacity.

These are the more popular methods of interior and exterior waterproofing. Depending on the severity of the problem, the cost, and the level of coverage that a homeowner is seeking, these three factors will ultimately decide which method is best for their situation. It is recommended to consult with a waterproofing expert before deciding upon a method as an expert will be able to assess the condition of your basement accurately.

Aqua Tech Waterproofing is only a call away and offers a free assessment of your basement. With a 10/10 customer service rating on Home Stars and a proven track record of over twenty-five years of high quality work behind them, Aqua Tech Waterproofing can provide more information on the benefits of interior and/or exterior waterproofing.