Basement waterproofing refers to methods or combination of techniques to prevent water from entering the basement of a home or any building construction. Most effective basement waterproofing techniques include proper drainage or water, moisture control and sealers.
Best way to go for basement waterproofing is to plan before a new construction. Waterproofing in an existing construction gets more difficult and expensive.
Why Does a Basement Leaks Water?
Most common wet basement problem occurs when water leaks from the joint where the floor and wall. Most such cases happen after heavy rains or heavy snowfall. Basement waterproofing and drainage is needed in cases where ground water raises the water table. Increase in water level causes hydrostatic pressure to be exerted underneath basement floors and against basement walls. This hydrostatic pressure forces water through cracks in foundation walls, through openings caused by expansion and contraction of the footing-foundation wall joint and up through floor cracks. Hydrostatic pressure can cause serious damage to the foundation walls and create problems related to moisture, mold, decay and other problems.
How to do Basement Waterproofing?
There are 3 main methods to do waterproofing in a basement:
- Interior wall and floor sealers.
- Interior and exterior water drainage.
- Interior and exterior water drainage combined with waterproofing coatings.
Interior Sealants for Wall and Floor of Wet Basement: Interior sealer products can prevent humidity in a basement but they are not permanent protection from water infiltration due to hydrostatic pressure. Interior sealer products are good for absorbing into the porous masonry and to prevent spalling. This prevents deterioration and shedding of the concrete surfaces.
Interior water drainage: Drainage of water logged in a basement cannot be considered as waterproofing. It is just a part of the process. The best interior drainage systems must be recognized by B.O.C.A (Building Officials and Code Administrators). This system removes underground water from the foundation footers and underneath the basement floor. The system consists of French drain, PVC pipe, a sump pump system etc. Sump pumps can be installed by the owner of the house or by a professional waterproofing contractor.
Exterior waterproofing: Exterior waterproofing of a basement prevents water from entering foundation walls thus preventing the wicking and molding of building materials. The IBC (International Building Code) recognizes exterior waterproofing as adequate to prevent structural damage caused by water intrusion. House owners should direct the accumulation of water away from the foundation or into drainage or pumping systems.
Polymer based waterproofing compounds: Polymer-based waterproofing products are great for basement waterproofing. These products last for the lifetime of the building, and are not affected by soil pH. Polymer-based waterproofing compounds can be easily sprayed directly onto a wall.
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