How to Prevent Basement Flooding Fast and Easy

Now we all look forward to spring and there are certain characteristics about this time of the year which brings out the best in us, birds chirping, flowers blooming all over, the sun shining right at us, overall increased day light – Yes! We couldn’t be happier! But then there are those things which we do not look forward to, a less happy characteristic of spring is a flooding basement, full of water – you stand there thinking what to do?

Although the weather has its perks, spring bring along with it the sorrow of flawed grading and weakened foundations. Now if you are facing this issue for the very first time around – there are remedies you can take in order to avoid these instances in the future, ensure that it never repeats and get things back in order.

The first thing to do is of course to get rid of all that water! Now if you follow us regularly, a couple of articles ago we recommended that home owners should invest in a sump pump. But don’t despair if you don’t have one as of yet – you can always rent one from your local home improvement store. And if you have more than just a few inches of water to get rid of it might be worth your while to call in a professional. They know what they’re doing and have the equipment to match.

So with that done, the next thing is to get rid of all the moisture left behind. Dry things out, make sure the area is properly ventilated so as to decrease the chances of molds forming at all the wrong places. Increase air circulation and open up all the windows and doors leading to your basement.

And since spring is here, it might be good to do some post spring cleaning. Get rid of anything and everything which is wet or of a porous nature. These will includes old newspapers and card board boxes – you can always restack once done with drying of your basement area. If you have carpeting, which can be dried of quickly, so be it – otherwise clear it out.

It can be a cumbersome task to clear out and dry your basement properly. Now that you know what needs to be done, it might be useful to follow these steps and avoid unnecessary damage to the interior of your basement.

How Serious Are Cracks In The Basement Wall?

Cracks in the basement walls are usually due to leaks around the foundations or are a first sign of structural problems with the house or the property you currently reside in. If you don’t nip this problem in the bud earlier on you’ll probably find yourself in a long line of home owners who eventually have to dish out thousands of dollars to get their property fixed.

Now the first thing you might want to take note of is the fact that your basement walls have considerable earth pressure pushing down on them constantly, this pressure is inward especially when considering the exterior grade and its positioning. In the olden day’s basement walls were made out of concrete and did not have any vertical refinements, thus they were capable of resisting pressure due to their borderline strength.

However if in case you are in a position where your basement wall seems to have cracks in and around it, note that for each kind there is a different kind of remedy.

A rule of thumb when considering basement cracks is that they are mostly due structural problems, your contractor either didn’t put in enough concrete or otherwise they didn’t bother leveling it out with the ground your house now stands at from the foundation and upwards. If you note a horizontal crack in your basement right in the middle of the wall you will need specialist intervention and sooner rather than later. However if the crack is bowing you might just get away with pasting a whole lot of concrete in and around it. But be careful you still want to call someone in to ensure that the concrete or cement your applying doesn’t latter on cause other problems.

Similarly in a concrete basement cracks will normally appear about six to eight inches from the top of the wall. And in most cases these will be a hairline crack which are a result of the reinforcing bars at the top not being placed properly. Now these cracks can cause a number of problems, the most common of which are:

  • They weaken the wall structure in itself

  • They allow moisture to seep in and penetrate through the wall

Now repairing this problem will involve you breaking out all of the spilling concrete, clearing the rust caused due to the moisture and water and eventually replacing the spilled concrete with repair mortar grade concrete. In each of the cases mentioned above you might just want to take on an expert opinion before you get to work. However basement cracks will appear either due to a weak structure or moisture making its way in from the foundations.

How to Budget Basement Waterproofing Costs?

A wet basement is a nuisance that can cause a number of major problems for you and your home. It can trigger a lot of serious health risks owing to the growth of mold and mildew that result from a wet basement. It can also cause damage to the foundations of your home and then cost you a hell lot of money when you think about getting the damage fixed. And last but certainly not the least, it can also cause the value of the property to reduce significantly.

The worst thing is that people often perceive the cost of basement waterproofing to be so high that they actually put off the whole job aside. You need to realize it is extremely important that you immediately look into the costs and options available to you for basement waterproofing so that you can save yourself the future costs of getting the foundation fixed or complete renovations in case the damage gets big.

Basement waterproofing costs can actually run from $500 -$5000 depending totally on the type of waterproofing method that you opt for. The most expensive procedures are ones that require excavations around the foundations of the basement and the installation of the footer drains. Footer drains are responsible for leading the water away from your home so that it doesn’t damage your basement and in case you have a major basement flooding problem then you will definitely need to get those installed. Some houses already have footer drains installed in their foundations and in case you already have them you will just have get them cleaned or repaired if they aren’t working properly.

A very cost effective option for basement waterproofing is getting French drains installed. French drains are a very viable option because they entail less work. You can get jack hammering methods rather than expensive excavating for the installation of French drains. Also you can get your basement walls treated with polymers so that they keep the water away from your walls and don’t let it soak through the walls.

Sometimes all you might need to do is keep your basement leakage free and dry. For this it is important that you get professional help and consultation before you opt for any basement waterproofing options. Professional service providers can give you free quotes so make use of the service providers available in your area. Never opt for the first contractor you come across. Prices fluctuate therefore never settle without a proper research.

The best way to budget your basement waterproofing cost is to do your homework and then opt for a service provider. You can check out reviews and then settle on the contractor who gives you an estimate that is well within your budget. Remember the cost will fluctuate and settle somewhere between both extremes. You might find it a bit overwhelming but you should know that it is going to be well worth it in the future as it will save you the cost of repairs and maintenance of the entire home and foundations as well in case the damage gets huge.

The Top 5 Wet Basement Solutions

If you want to prevent basement maintenance costs, protect the value of your home and reduce health risks a wet basement poses for your family, you need to consider solving your wet basement problems as soon as possible.

A wet basement smells nasty and it also poses a great risk to the overall value of your property and reduces its cost. Also when you don’t pay attention to the problems of a wet basement, they will eventually grow bigger and then ruin your floors, walls, encourage the growth of mold and mildew and also damage the foundations of your home.

Here are five very effective ways you can keep water out of your basement and prevent flooding and future maintenance costs:

  1. Addition of gutter extensions

Check whether the downspouts are dumping water close to your home. If the distance is less than 5 feet then you should get plastic or metal gutter extensions so that you can get adequate distance between your home and your basement and keep it dry. Addition of gutter extensions solves the problem immediately but if you are looking for long term solutions to a wet basement then you should get drain pipes installed underground.

  1. Waterproofing the walls

Another effective solution to a wet basement problem is waterproofing the walls. You can use good quality interior sealants or waterproofing paints to seal the walls and the floors of the basement so that no more moisture seeps through them and the humidity level in the basement is kept under control.

  1. Plugging the gaps

If water dribbles through gaps or cracks in the basement then you can seal them using plug gaps. You can plug the openings using hydraulic cement or caulk. However this solution will work only when the problem is water leaking in the basement through cracks from wet soil or surface runoff. If the water seeps through joints where the walls and the floors meet or it is groundwater that is flooding your basement, the plugs won’t work here.

  1. Installing a French drain

This is a shallow drainage system that is responsible for drawing water away from the basement of your home outside. French drains will have a drainage ditch containing pipes and will be surrounded by gravel perforating the water so that it escapes slowing without gathering in one spot and creating puddles that leak in your basement.

  1. Building up the ground

Water might seep through to your basement if the grading around your house isn’t proper. You need to have the soil sloping at least 6inches away from your house. If that is not the case then build up the ground top soil to improve grading. You can also plant deep rooted plants or grass around the ground covering your house so that it protects against soil erosion.

Keep a check on your basement regularly so that you can tackle with the problems on time and save yourself huge maintenance costs hence the problems grow.

3 Unique Options For Basement Waterproofing

When you have a basement in your home, it is essential that you know about waterproofing options because it is bound to cause you a problem in the future if you don’t get it waterproofed. If you live in a region where rain, snow and moisture levels are high, it is more than likely that you will face basement flooding. The threat is constant and it is essential that precautionary measures be taken beforehand to prevent damage.

Waterproofing your basement will require you to do more than just patching up the spots that have been troubling you. You need to locate the source of the leak and also check the problems it has caused to the foundation of your home so that you can prevent problems for the future.

Here are three unique options that you can consider for waterproofing your basement. These options combine the best of all extreme options that include affordability, complication of the process and the time they consume:

  1. Interior Sealant/ Waterproofing Paints

Although these are a temporary solution to basement flooding but they can certainly help you while you find something permanent to get rid of your basement flooding. Waterproofing paints or sealants can be sprayed on walls or rolled up on the floors to prevent moisture from entering the basement and keeping the humidity level under control. This can be a DIY solution as well as being cheap and less time consuming. However if you have a serious basement flooding problem, these might not be the solution you are looking for.

  1. Exterior Waterproofing

This will require you to tackle the problem from the outside. However exterior waterproofing is a very disruptive, time consuming and expensive option. Exterior waterproofing will require a trench to be dug around your house leading to the foundation and then the walls will be sealed using a waterproofing membrane. Also a drainage system will be set up along the footing so that water is driven away from your basement. Since exterior waterproofing uses polymers to waterproof your basement, it is a more reliable and cost effective method in the long run and the polymers are known to last for a long time.

  1. Interior Water Drainage System

If you are looking for an effective yet cheaper option for basement waterproofing then interior water drainage system is an ideal option. The approach used in this method requires a trench to be dug around the interior basement wall and then a drain is installed leading to a sump pit where the moisture is pumped outside. The cost will include charges paid to the contractors for the perimeter drainage per linear foot and the cost of the sump pump.
The only drawback to this method would be the sump pump being off when there is no power. So if you can manage to keep it running when the power goes off, this is a fail free method.

A plumber or a professional basement waterproofing contractor can guide you much better when it comes to interior water drainage systems for your home.

What You Need to Know About Basement Cracks That Have Never Leaked or Show No Signs of Leaking

Foundation cracks are a common occurrence for homeowners, but also a rather confusing one. Homeowners are always concerned about leakage and often ask whether cracks that have never leaked or show no signs of leaking should be repaired or not.

So here’s all you need to know about such foundation cracks:

First of all, there is no definite answer to the question. It is different for each crack, as it depends on the level of water penetration in your basement and its risk of increasing. Often times, cracks can leak unexpectedly while in other cases, cracks don’t leak despite heavy rains and storms. However, after considering a few facts and points about such foundation cracks, you can easily decide whether they need to be repaired or not.

When water enters a crack, it is not necessary it will leak. However, when the water freezes with the change in temperature, it expands the crack, thereby having the increased risk of leaking. This makes the crack not only vulnerable to leaks but also declines the overall quality of your home’s foundation. For those who want complete peace of mind about leakage, it is best to get is repaired.

Water sitting in the cracks can be absorbed by the concrete or cinderblocks, which also weakens your home’s structure. This is a high risk, as water can completely make the structure unsafe after some years. However, concrete can withstand such damage for at least 15-20 years so if a homeowner is avoiding getting it repaired immediately, they can wait a while.

For homeowners who are currently getting their basement made, it is best to get the cracks repaired then as the costs are lower when the basement is under construction. Before the work in your basement is complete, be sure to check the walls very closely for cracks. In fact, any other irregularities like damp spots, seepage, soil stains, mold, etc. should also be repaired before the basement is finished so as to get lower repair costs. Ignoring these concerns and finishing up the basement walls can result in extensive damage later on that will cost more than the initial repairs.

Thus, it is plain that even the cracks that seem not at risk because they haven’t leaked in years hold a lot of risk.

The solution to cracks and all other wall irregularities, of course, is waterproofing. Waterproofing helps secure your basement walls against all these problems and even has other benefits like minimized risk of leaks and damage and need for extensive future repairs.

The Importance of External Basement Insulation for Your Home

A basement is regarded as a very important part of a house but people consider basement insulation an option rather than a necessity. However, the benefits that external basement insulation can provide are enough to make it a necessity for every home owner. Minimizing cost all the while maximizing comfort, less energy usage and other benefits include:

Decreases Energy Consumption

Since basement wall insulation helps significantly in regulating temperature throughout the year, the energy consumed with constant use of air conditioners or heaters decreases. In winters, your basement remains warm and in summer, your basement is cool. Any fluctuations in temperature are not experienced inside the basement as the insulation helps provide protection.

Reduced Costs

With basement external wall insulation, you are saving money in two ways: one by the reduced energy and electricity consumption and two by the minimization of needing extensive and expensive basement repairs like moisture seepage, mold growth, etc.

Protects from Moisture

Basement insulation is necessary to protect your basement from moisture. External insulation provides more protection as the outer section of your basement is also shielded from moisture. This protection helps reduce the need for expensive home maintenance services like removal of mold or fungi or condensation. Moreover, your health is also safer with adequate moisture prevention as problems like mold or mildew can cause health concerns.

Increased Level of Comfort

Of course, the comfort that external basement insulation provides is unmatched. A year-round regulated temperature makes your basement a great place to relax in, keeping heat inside during the winter and retaining cold air in summer.

Protection of Home Foundation and Water Pipes

External basement wall insulation is great for protecting two vital elements of your home that can otherwise be vulnerable to damage and cost high maintenance rates: your home’s foundation and water pipes. In cold temperatures, your home’s foundation can be damaged due to the freezing and melting cycles. However, external insulation can effectively protect the outer structure and soil from such damage. Moreover, water pipes which are present in every home can be protected from freezing, which is a problem in itself and can cause further damage as well. Insulated basement walls keep the water pipes safe.

Increases Home Value

Every homeowner is concerned with the value of their home and taking home improvement measures is known to increase the value of any home. External basement wall insulation is one such measure that increases the durability, livability, longevity, and comfort of a home which is bound to increase your home’s overall value. Furthermore, increasing your home’s attractiveness also helps in increasing its value and external wall insulation in your basement can help you easily modify and decorate its walls as it reduces the potential risk of walls damaged by moisture.

Common Myths about Foundation Repair

Your home’s foundation is very important. You need to monitor it closely, and if you see cracks and damage, you must take these seriously. A small crack can lead to a bigger one in no time, and if you put off having this repaired until tomorrow, you are basically risking your family’s safety and you might just need to spend more money in repairs. Because there are so many articles you can find online about foundation repair and maintenance, there are a lot of individuals who think they can manage repairs on their own.

DIY instructions may sometimes be reliable, however, without professional knowledge and the right tools; you might end up with further damage on your home’s foundation. It is still best to consult with a professional rather than placing things on your own hands.

If you look around websites with information on foundation repairs, especially those with forums or comment sections, you might have probably seen thoughts and “experiences” of other homeowners. You might even come across situations that are similar to yours, and you are led to believe that their solution could also be applicable to your home’s foundation.

It is highly important for you not to take a foundation for granted. However, if you want to know more about the realities in foundation repair, we will be debunking some myths you may have already heard of.

1. You can repair cracks on your foundation permanently with polyurethane sealants and high-tech epoxies.
While these products are strong enough to provide temporary repairs, don’t trust that sealants and epoxies can permanently repair a foundation. These are basically Band-Aid solutions to address a problem that could be more damaging to your entire home in the future. It is best to have an expert take a look at your foundation and determine whether there’s a bigger problem that needs to be fixed right away.

2. Replace your damaged foundation with a new one to make sure it won’t give you any more problems.
There are some damages in a foundation that can be fixed with simple repairs, however, there might be some companies wanting to make more profit out of you by suggesting to replace your foundation with a new one. Find a reliable company though that will be able to give you honest recommendations that will repair your foundation effectively but in a more cost-effective process.

3. Poured concrete foundation is stronger than concrete block foundation.
It always depends on the quality of materials and workmanship in order for you to say that a foundation is too weak or strong enough. Depending on the soil condition, wall support, drainage systems and so on, a concrete block could be strong enough as a foundation of your home. Always ask an expert for advice to make sure.

If you need honest, reliable and cost-effective assistance for your foundation repair and maintenance needs, contact the experts from Aquatech Waterproofing.

Common Basement Waterproofing Issues and Their Solutions

Common Basement Waterproofing Issues and Their Solutions

Dealing with a leaky or moist basement isn’t something any property owner wants to deal with. Whether you’re considering purchasing a new home or have lived in one that has water issues, it’s important to educate yourself about the common problems that can cause leaks and floods in basements. By eliminating these issues, you can potentially have a basement that is waterproof. Read on to find out the common basement waterproofing issues and their solutions.

Not Enough Ventilation Around Foundation Due to Dense Shrubbery

Sure, having shrubs and plants planted around the outside foundation of your home was a great design choice, but it could be causing poor ventilation. This means that each time it rains or snow melts, it can’t evaporate quickly like it’s supposed to. The water is then left to sit there around your foundation, which can potentially leak into your basement through the windows or cracks and holes in the exterior.

The solution to this problem would be to trim shrubs that have grown heavily, so that the soil is able to get more sunlight. Obviously, this will allow the water that falls here to dry up faster. When you’re digging up plants to remove, make sure to also get rid of any pieces of mortar, masonry or other materials that were buried around the house when your basement was excavated.

Your Basement Windows Aren’t Protected

Few people pay attention to their basement windows and their vulnerability. When your basement windows are left unprotected, heavy storms can cause lots of water to build up, allowing water to leak in through the frames and beneath the windows.

To combat this problem, you can have window wells installed. These will protect your windows from standing water that persists after heavy rain and snow. The wells used should be made of masonry or metal and have bottoms that consist of gravel, to allow the water to drain properly. You can also have your entire window well covered with clear plastic bubbles, similar to an awning.

Your Basement Sweats

Another word for this problem is called condensation. This is when the atmosphere in your basement produces moisture, which typically forms on cool surfaces like cold water pipes, floors and walls. The excess moisture occurs when the weather is hot and humid or when there are long periods of rainfall.

In order to stop your basement from “sweating”, it’s recommended that you regulate the ventilation in your basement. It’s advised that you have your plumbing repaired in a timely manner, open basement windows and dry your clothes using a dryer that vents the hot air outdoors. If this doesn’t help, you can try using a large-capacity dehumidifier.

Having waterproofing methods performed to your home is a great way to get rid of moisture and water leaks. There are different techniques you can use, including indoor and outdoor drainage systems. Whenever you notice a water issue in your basement, make sure to tend to it right away. It would be a good idea to have a professional help you with finding and eliminating the source of the problem.

Top 10 Tips from Waterproofing Contractors Hamilton

The problem usually starts with one minor leak. And if you don’t pay attention, it grows and grows until there is a major mess and then you find yourself surrounded by a lot of expenses that you will have to pay upfront to get the problem of a wet basement Hamilton fixed. It is absolutely necessary that you pay attention to the minor leak only and save yourself the huge repairing and maintenance costs in the future that your negligence might cost you.

Here are top ten tips from waterproofing contractors Hamilton to help you tackle the issues from a minor leak to major excavations for exterior waterproofing systems:

  1. First of all do not dry clothes in the basement or keep stocks of wet firewood there.
  2. If it’s a minor condensation issue then ensure good drying systems. Open windows to keep the basement dry. In colder months keep the heat up in the basement.
  3. If there are cold water pipes in your basement then get proper foam insulation on them to keep moisture away from collection on them.
  4. Get Good Gutters- roof drainages are the major cause of a leaky basement. If you live in an area with heavy rains or snows, it is important that you pay attention to gutters. Your gutters should be clean and not filled with debris and they should lie at least 5 feet away from your home to prevent them from leaking inside.
  5. Sloping Soil- it is important that the sloping soil lies at least 6 inches away from your home and it should always lie away from the home.
  6. Plant Deep Rooted Grass- deep rooted grass absorbs the water from the soil around the house and it also prevents soil erosion which might contribute to water leaking in your basement.
  7. If there are only cracks or gaps contributing to the wetness in your basement then plug these gaps with interior sealants or waterproofing paints instantly.
  8. If a lot of water collects in the soil around your house then it will definitely contribute to a wet basement. Make sure you improve your drainage systems so that no water collects and seeps through the soil to your basement.
  9. Get downspouts installed that lead to PVC plumbing lines that run underground around your house and discharge water to other areas.
  10. Last but not the least get professional help to check for any kinds of major leaks or issues if your basement doesn’t dry off even after you have tried a number of DIY methods.
Basement Walls Leak When It Rains Toronto

Basement Walls Leak When It Rains Hamilton

Never ignore the problem of a wet basement Hamilton even if its just a minor issue. Remember the problem will eventually grow and then you’ll find yourself in a mess. Get professional consultations from contractors. There are waterproofing contractors who offer free consultations and quotes on inspection of the property.

Get two three opinions before settling on any one and then get the problem of your wet basement resolved once and for all.