The Value of Waterproofing a Basement

The Value of Waterproofing a Basement

Basements are constructed below the ground, ripe for leaks of water. Wet basements scare most of us as we don’t have any idea how to handle the matter thinking immediately of a permanent problem that destroys our investment or home.

We think of the cost of repair, the cost being prohibitive. Moisture in the basement is a sign of trouble, whether it be a little or a lot of moisture, a puddle or a wet wall. It means worry and the thought of expense. Wasting time getting repairs probably will increase the financial toll as moisture damages the building’s structure, the foundation.

Finding the Source of Waterproofing

We may not know we have moisture in the basement until we finally see moisture on a wall or along the floor of the basement. It may be hidden inside the structure or the insulation. Once discovered, we must follow the water back to the source of the leak.

The leak may come through the structure, through windows that leak down through the foundation or the leak may come from outside through the upper walls. The water may be coming through cracks in concrete or the foundation.
The leak may seep through the walls themselves if the drainage around the building isn’t properly resolved. Landscaping may cause moisture. Gutters may cause damage. And too much moisture caused by humidity may be the cause.

Water Through the Foundation

If the water is caused by improper irrigation near the foundation, the water must be redirected and the soil around the foundation changed. Grading the landscape to draw water away from the walls is one way of settling this. Other ways of settling this problem if diverting the water isn’t feasible, the area around the foundation must be filled with small stones and drainage water pipes that lead the water out and away.

Crack in the Foundation

If there are cracks in the foundation, these may be filled with concrete adhesive or hydraulic cement that expands quickly to seal the area and stop any further entry of water. Then the reasons for the crack may be explored to see if the foundation is solid.

Humidity and Gutters

If water is coming from Humidity it may be possible to paint the walls with a waterproofing paint that will seal up the walls. Any paint on the walls must be removed first.

Gutters serve to drain rain water away from the home extensions direct the water further to stop water from channeling into the home. In some cases, in areas where the rains are fast and excessive, a sump pump may be used.

The French Drain

Lastly, a French system of drainage may be needed coupled with the sump pump. In this method in extreme cases, a trench is dug in the basement, a pipe installed in it and then gravel fills the trench. Tile covers all this. Water drains into the trench and is led out of the basement by a sump pump taking the water out of the basement.

The Value

The value of a home that increases its square footage also increases its value. A usable basement that can house an extra bathroom, a guest room or a play area for children is a valuable asset that increases value. But it must be water safe. Move a washroom downstairs or simply have a gym or storage place. The basement can be valuable.