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A wet basement is a homeowner’s worst nightmare. Whether it’s a finished basement that has been transformed into a bonus room for entertainment or if it’s just being used as a storage room, a wet or leaky basement can seriously damage a home, contribute to hazardous conditions and financially burden the homeowner.
A home is not meant to be damp or wet and there are certain states and cities that are more prone to leaks and floods than others. If you have experienced leaking walls, floors or cracks in your home then you most likely need the assistance of an experienced basement waterproofing company.
Average Costs Of Waterproofing
Average Costs $1,800
The first thing to keep in mind when considering waterproofing services is your motivation behind needing or wanting the services.
Is it for preventive measures or do you already have a problem?
If you have clogged gutters and downspouts then a gutter cleaning company will need to be called in.
If you have a condensation issue then the main problem is probably the result of poor ventilation. If there is no heating or air conditioning in the basement, then installing a dehumidifier is a simple fix. If it is your water pipes that require insulation.
Once you figure out what the problem is or your main motivation behind investing in waterproofing you will be able to make better decisions about the services you need and what you can pay for.
Why Waterproofing Works
Protect The Foundation
The foundation of your house or building should be sturdy enough to stand the test of time. If your basement is leaky or has water damage, it breaks and weakens the foundation of your house. By waterproofing your basement, you can be sure that your foundation remains strong and safe.
A wet basement can damage personal belongings and other valuables stored in it. If you waterproof your basement, you can be sure that your personal belongings are safe from getting wet or moldy.
A house is a great investment. A well-maintained house has higher value. If your house has a leaky basement, it decreases its value.
Damp areas like leaky basements are the breeding ground for mildew, mold. If these things are present in your basement, it can lead to several health issues for you and your family.
A cold damp basement in also a breeding ground for pest control problems. A dry warm basement can help prevent insect infestations.
Different Types Of Waterproofing
Cracks and Holes
Regardless of whether you are doing interior of exterior waterproofing, you have no choice but to repair cracks and holes. Patching them can prove challenging to say the least. For interior waterproofing, you have to brush away loose concrete to get a decent surface. You will need to use concrete to fill the holes and cracks, then smooth it out. The process is time-consuming and complicated. Exterior basement waterproofing is done in such a way that cracks and holes are not much of a problem.
Skin shielding is used only with exterior waterproofing. Essentially, a skin is placed over the exterior wall after waterproofing paint has been applied. The skin acts as a moisture barrier between the cool soil and the excess water. The skin is rubberized and has a honeycomb design.
Interior and exterior waterproofing will always utilize waterproofing paint. The paint is applied just like any other kind of paint. It is typically latex based and does not allow water to adhere to it or degrade it over time. Exterior waterproofing paint is more durable than interior waterproofing paint due to the constant bombardment of moisture and rain that is must withstand.
Creating water drainage is an important part of waterproofing. In order to keep the interior of the dry, you need to install a drainage system outside of your home. There are many ways that it can be done, even with the simple pipes like downspouts. Another way is to create a trench at the base of the exterior wall and place a drain pipe inside the trench, and have it connect to the exterior plumbing line. It will keep water away from the concrete foundation and out of the home.
When it comes to exterior waterproofing, the water sock is a popular choice among builders. The water sock is a round piece of absorbent material wrapped in a mesh. The land around the home is excavated to the base of the foundation. A trench is dug and filled with 1-inch of sand. The water sock is set in the sand and covered with gravel. The trench is dug around the perimeter of the property and then the earth is backfilled over the water sock before it is leveled. When it rains, the water soaks through the ground and reaches the gravel. The water filters through the gravel to the water sock, where it is stored. Over time, the water is slowly released back into the ground.
Preventive Waterproofing Measures
A home that hasn’t been waterproofed is subject to water damage, which can lead to mold & mildew, foundation problems, expensive repairs and heath problems. If you live in an area that gets heavy rainfall, or snow then you may want to consider some advice to help prevent water from getting into your home.
If your gutters are clogged, they will begin to overflow even during a light rainstorm. Over time, these overflows will pool up around the foundation of your home, eventually leaking into your basement and causing water damage. In heavy rainfalls, clogged gutters will quickly cause flooding and damage to your home’s foundation and basement. Having the gutter system cleaned at least per year will remove leaves, twigs, dirt, and other debris from your gutters to ensure the smooth flow of water through them. It is helpful to install leaf guards and downspout extenders that will direct water at least ten feet from your home.
Although you may think this is drastic; it is still better than having water intruding into your home. The grade, or slope, of the ground around your house plays a significant role in how water flows during a rainstorm or a spring melt off of a heavy snow season. During light rain, most water is absorbed into the earth, or evaporates from surfaces. But during a heavy rain, the water will collect in pools or run down slopes. If the ground around your house is sloped towards your home, this means that the water will run down the slope directly into the basement of your home. The soil or dirt around your home should be pitched, allowing water to drain away from your home instead of towards it. Add soil to your yard if necessary to create the correct slope away from your home.
Trees have an aggressive root system that can cause problems with the foundation of your home, leading to cracks, holes, and damage through which water can enter. Trees should be planted at least 20 feet from your home to prevent their roots from damaging your foundation.
Having a lush landscape not only adds to the curb appeal of your home and but can really add to your homes waterproofing plan. Adding thick grass and shrubs around your home’s exterior will help absorb the water.
Tips & Advice
- Ask For The License – Ask for all local and state business licenses.
- Proof Of Insurance– For your own protection, check proof of both workman’s compensation and liability Insurance.
- Business Stability- Find out how long the company has been in business.
- Check Online Reviews – You’re probably not the first person in town looking for their services. Rely on the internet to get reviews written by people in your community.
- References – Expect any top-notch company to be able to provide you with references upon request. Once you have these names, contact the clients to get information about the quality service. When you call, ask questions about the work, timeliness, cost and whether the clients would use the company again for future work.
- 24-hour Emergency Service – Make sure your local company offers emergency 24 hour service. If something goes wrong, it’s good to know that you will not have to wait days for them to come out and fix it.
- Over The Phone Pricing – Honest estimates simply cannot be given over the phone – especially if you aren’t talking with an actual technician when you call.
- Free Estimates – Most companies offer free estimates. This is important because they can provide you with the costs upfront, so that you are not shocked with a bill after the services are completed.
- Safety Record – Safety can be a significant factor, so ask the company about their safety records to ensure that any service professional you hire has a satisfactory safety record. You want a company that doesn’t have a high incidence of on-the-job mishaps or injuries.
- Satisfaction Guarantee – Choosing a company that offers a satisfaction guarantee will ensure that they will get the job done right the first time and will save you money and frustration in the long run.
- Cleanup – The mess left behind after a project can be major. Ask what cleanup work the company includes with it’s services.