There are a lot of benefits of having a basement in your home. You can have a place wherein you can install mechanical equipment such as a water heater or generator, put your entertainment machine, kitchen tools, and even laundry machines. The basement provides easy access to the water pipes and electrical cables, thus, it is essential to keep the spaces dry. Unfortunately, since it is located underground, it is prone to moisture, and that’s why it’s mostly damp, wet, and humid. Here are some tips to waterproof your basement.
Identify the Problem
The first thing to do before waterproofing your basement is to identify what to look out for; Here are some signs to check before assessing the problem.
- Leaking Walls. Basement walls can be leaking coming from broken pipes behind the concrete. It usually forms damp spots and condensation. Sometimes it comes from the window well leaks.
- Musty Smell. If you smell this in your basement, it is usually from mold and mildew growth. Mold and mildew developed from the excess moisture in the air. Mold can grow faster on any materials in your basements such as wood, fabrics, carpeting, HVAC, and even pipes.
- The peeling of paint. Paints can easily peel because of the excess dampness on the wall.
- Dry rot. This blackish-brown fungus appears if something is in the decaying process and usually can be seen in woods. It can grow as a result of excessive leaks and dampness.
- Flooding/standing water. If you see this warning sign, it means that water finds its way to your basements and can cause damage.
3 Most Common Mistakes to Avoid
- Avoid using any plastic-like material to waterproof your basement walls. Plastics are easy to peel and develop moisture.
- Avoid using tar to cover up the cracks and holes. Tar can become brittle and cracks eventually.
- Do not rely on waterproof paint, especially if your foundation isn’t firm.
How to Waterproof Your Basement
Here are some do-it-yourself tips to waterproof your basement.
1. Assess first the area. If you see any structural damage to the foundation, a faulty foundation drainage system, or unusually high hydrostatic pressure against the foundation, it usually needs fixing that can be done by a professional. In cleaning the area, you have to use warm water and liquid dish soap. Use oxygen bleach in killing mold and mildew for a safer handle but make sure to scrub the area thoroughly, then wash it off with warm water.
2. To remove the musty smell, place a dehumidifier in the room to draw the moisture out of the damp and ruin walls, carpeting, furniture, and more. It is also an effective tool for controlling the humidity and condensation of the area.
3. Check for cracks and holes in the basement. If you see cracks or holes in your basement, plug them with hydraulic cement. Hydraulic cement will expand and set in less than five minutes. Make sure to mix it well with a margin trowel and then press it into the hole, divot, or around penetration points.
4. Choose waterproof carpeting materials to address and control the water issues and install water-resistant carpet pads to create a buffer between the basement damps and the carpet itself.
5. Seal the cracks in the walls or on the basement floor. Apply a solid layer of waterproof sealant onto the walls and floors and let it dry first before repainting them.
6. After addressing all the issues, sealing the cracks, and plugging the holes, apply a waterproof coating by rolling or brushing it onto your walls and floors just as you would paint.
7. Check for outdoor issues by checking the gutters and downspouts for leaks to avoid rainwater from flowing through your foundation.
Turn to the Professionals
Protecting your home from water damage is always a must. The basement is the easy target for most water damages as there are a lot of ways to destroy them, such as pipe bursts, natural disasters, and even toilet backups. Waterproofing is one of the best options. But if there is still a flood in your basement, call a professional. Water Damage Lake Elsinore has experienced professionals who can assess your water damaged basement and perform necessary repairs immediately. We have 24/7 emergency services. Call our local office for more information.