How To Waterproof Your Basement Without The Help Of A Specialist

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Are you starting to notice minor cracks along your basement walls and floors? One tiny crack could leave you with a major leak!

Almost 20% of all insurance losses were the result of water damage and freezing for a single year. Unfortunately, accidents happen all the time. By taking the right steps, however, you can protect yourself and your home before an accident strikes.

Want to learn how to waterproof your basement without calling on a professional? With these tips, you can ensure a waterproof basement and avoid costly damages.

Otherwise, you’ll have to call a specialist anyway to clean up the mess!

Discover how to secure your home from potential flooding with these easy tips!

Why Basements Leak

A hard rainstorm or even melting snow can cause groundwater levels to rise for a short period of time. During this period, your roof will shed water, which then plugs your gutters and downspouts with debris and moisture. 

Eventually, that excess water will make it to your home’s foundation. 

The run-off will seep into the soft topsoil around your house. As the water pushes against your walls, it can start to affect the disturbed soil around your home’s foundation. 

Hydrostatic pressure builds when water accumulates around the foundation. This, in turn, can cause your basement to leak. 

Clay-rich soils don’t drain very well. Instead, the soil holds rainwater against the foundation walls. As a result, cracks will begin to form, allowing the water to get through. 

How to Waterproof Your Basement

There are a few different ways you might want to waterproof your basement. Give these tips a try to keep moisture from building up within your home. 

Fill the Cracks

Your basement is the ideal location for mold to hide from sight. You might even have unsightly cracks or a minor flood without realizing it. Thankfully, you can prevent unwanted moisture from building up in your basement.

First, it’s important to look for any cracks in the walls or floors. These cracks are often an ideal source where unwanted moisture develops. A crack can cause an eventual leak and weaken your foundation’s structural integrity. 

The best way to learn how to waterproof small cracks in your walls and floors is to use hydraulic cement. 

Filling these cracks with cement will also help you avoid eventual structural damage. Leaving the cracks unattended, however, could cause moisture to build and mold to develop. 

First, add water to the cement mix. Pour the mix into any cracks you’ve noticed in your basement floors or walls. Your hydraulic cement mixture should set up immediately. 

Once it’s dry, the cement will create a waterproof seal designed to keep your home safe.

However, it’s important to note that hydraulic cement is only ideal for smaller cracks. If you begin to notice severe, large cracks in the walls or floors, call a professional immediately. In addition to filling these cracks for you, they can also double-check to make sure you haven’t already sustained mold and mildew damage. 

Check the Exterior

Once you handle any minor cracks in the basement, head outside. 

Many of the moisture-related issues that can impact your basement will start outside of your home. 

First, check your home’s grading. Does the soil near your house slope away from the foundation? If not, pool grading can cause water to pool and leak into your basement. 

Next, check the gutters. Damaged or clogged gutters can cause water to overflow near the base of your home. When your gutters aren’t properly maintained, it can cause unwanted moisture and saturation. 

Make sure the downspouts are long enough to keep water from pooling around your home. 

Apply Sealer

As you learn how to waterproof your basement, you might want to consider using a concrete sealer as well. 

Concrete sealers are s simple way to waterproof the floors and walls. While effective, this option only works to keep out small amounts of moisture. Remember, if you notice any major cracks or leaks, you’ll likely need a professional expert’s help. 

You can apply the concrete sealer to your walls and floors by using rollers and paintbrushes.

Make sure to completely read the instructions before you start applying the sealer. Some brands require specific conditions for use. 

Install a French Drain

Do you live in a place with a heavy rainy season? If so, you might want to consider installing a French drain in order to keep excess water away from your home’s exterior.

You might also want to consider a perimeter drain to eliminate leaks from impacting your home. However, this option requires construction and a professional’s help. 

Instead, a French drain system will require trenching your basement floor. Then, you’ll need to pour cement and install a sump pump. 

For a French drain, you’ll need to leave a gap along the floor-to-wall joint. This gap will make it easier for water to seep through the walls before flowing into the French drain.

If you’re not very hands-on or lack experience, you might want to hire a professional for this job. They can install your French drain and make sure it works properly to keep water damage and leaks at bay. 

Hire a Professional

You can use the above tips to learn how to waterproof your basement on your own. In some cases, however, you’ll want to call a professional instead. 

The average for a basement with standing water over an inch deep is approximately $4,000 for water removal If you experience a sewer backup or flood, don’t clean it up yourself. Instead, call a professional immediately.

Water could potentially seep into every space and crack if you’re not careful. As a result, you could end up with mold, which could cause additional damages.

A professional can determine the extent of the damage. They’ll devise a plan to restore your home and prevent mold damage from occurring. 

For example, experts can help:

  • Pump water out of your basement using vacuums and suctions
  • Dry the basement out using ventilation techniques
  • Remove trapped water by opening walls and floors or removing baseboards and flooring
  • Using special treatments on the structure to prevent potential mold and pest infestations

Make sure to speak with the professional you hire about how to waterproof your basement for the future. 

Protect Your Own Home!

Now that you know how to waterproof your basement, get to it! The sooner you start waterproofing, the sooner you’ll protect your home from an unexpected storm. Use these tips to waterproof your basement today!

Did using these tips help you waterproof your basement? Share this post with family and friends to help them, too!

Eager to start waterproofing? Contact our team today to discover how we can help!