Basement waterproofing refers to various methods and materials employed to stop water from entering a basement of a residential or commercial building. It also includes the installation of basement sump pumps and drains, the application of proper sealant materials to prevent basement leaks, and the excavation of areas where foundation walls or other structures meet the walls of the basement. A basement waterproofing project involves many smaller projects than those associated with basement remodeling and house building construction. One such project is the excavation of spaces where basement walls and ceilings meet the floor of the basement. In some cases, basement remodeling may be necessary in order to make basement waterproofing feasible.
There are many known causes for moisture buildup in a basement area. Moisture can be caused by the presence of sewage or industrial waste products in the basement, standing water in the basement due to rain or other sources, or leaking pipes or water pipes in the basement area. Prevention is the best solution to basement waterproofing because reducing the amount of moisture present will prevent basement mold and mildew growths from occurring.
The most common causes of basement water damage are sump pump or drain pooling problems, leaks in pipes near the basement, foundation damage, or poor basement waterproofing. Leaks in basement walls occur due to the gradual movement of soil around the foundation. This results in the entrapment of the soil around the foundation and the entwined soil particles get trapped within the cracks and crevices of the basement walls. The presence of moisture then becomes very easy to identify and repair. Dampened basement walls also cause the growth of mildew and mold because dampness is a prerequisite for mold spores to grow. Any of these conditions can result in the formation of black mold or other toxic mold that can cause health hazards to inhabitants and cause structural damage to the structure.
Basement waterproofing contractors use various methods to seal and waterproof a basement. Waterproofed interiors can be made from different materials such as wood, tile, concrete, vinyl, linoleum, and fiberglass. It is important that the type of basement interior chosen to be determined according to the degree of damage to the basement and the likelihood of basement waterproofing being required. Interior waterproofing is a complex and time-consuming process and basement waterproofing cannot be completed overnight. Waterproofing should only be done when basement interior walls and floors are in excellent condition and completely dry.
Damp conditions must be identified and basement waterproofing methods applied to eliminate existing moisture problems. Moisture is eliminated by placing drains on basement floor areas, sealing all doors and windows, cleaning mold and mildew growths, and removing standing water. A special eave drainage system is also helpful in eliminating excess moisture from the inside of the house. All excess moisture is extracted through basement sump pits. The eave drains will create watertight channels on both sides of the house and drain out to the ground surrounding the house.
In order to ensure that your basement remains safe and dry, waterproofing should be completed before structural damage occurs. Most often, waterproofing is recommended after basement walls are affected by water infiltration. Walls that are affected by leaks must be repaired prior to waterproofing, otherwise structural damage will occur. A well-perfomently-sealed house is less likely to suffer from structural damage. As soon as waterproofing is started, however, structural damage is more likely to occur.