Heavy rain pounds against your windows, making you wrap your blanket a little tighter around yourself. While this rain may give you the perfect time to curl up with a good book or movie, the heavy rain is nature’s assault on your basement. The worst part of this assault is that it’s a slow and timeless battle; your basement may be fighting this battle for years before showing wear and tear. However, no matter how good a fight your basement puts up, you should be aware of what the signs look like when your basement starts losing the war. Here, we listed helpful tips on fixing water seepage in your basement.
How does water seep through basement walls and floors?
Water can enter the basement through wall and floor cracks or penetrate porous concrete or masonry walls as water vapor. Generally, water or moisture in basements has two primary sources. The first indoor humidity can condense on cold surfaces to form water droplets. The second one is water or water vapor from the outside. The groundwater can lead to soil saturation around your concrete foundation walls and leak in.
Different Causes of Basement Water Seepage
Water pipes are typically installed behind a concrete wall. If a line leaks, the water can run through the wall and create water pools under your basement floors, which will eventually cause water to seep up from the floor.
A clog or broken system of drains causes excess water from the backed gutter to leak through your concrete floors and porous wall slowly.
The small opening where the foundation wall meets the footings system is referred to as the cove joints. This opening allows unwanted water to seep through the basement via hydrostatic water pressure.
Mortar joints form the spaces between bricks or blocks. The movement in the foundation wall, even a minor one, can cause cracks in mortar joints and be an avenue for water seepage in the basement.
Basement floors are usually made from thin layers of poured concrete, which makes it easy for hydrostatic pressure to cause them to crack. When the water table rises, these floor cracks make it easy for water to seep into your basement.
Poured Concrete Wall Cracks
Cracks in a poured concrete wall are among the most common causes of basement water leaks. These cracks are usually the result of the force exerted by lateral pressure, the sideways pressure exerted by liquids, or a slight dropping of the foundation.
Excessive rainwater absorbed into the soil creates hydrostatic water pressure against your house’s underground foundation, which can push unwanted water into your homes through easy access points such as cracks on your floor and basement walls. You can only do so much to prevent soil from absorbing water and stop hydrostatic pressure from pushing it up into your floor and foundation wall. The simple solution to this problem is to tap the help of experts in waterproofing right away.
Clogged drains may lead to water accumulation on window wells during heavy or persistent rain. When this happens, the unwanted water will seep through the window, especially if it’s poorly installed.
Signs that Indicate a Leaking Basement
Condensation of water vapor appears as water drops on your walls, wet spots, or puddles on your basement floor.
Runoff occurs when rainwater or melted snow doesn’t get routed away from your house and instead finds ways to come in like cracks in your basement walls and footings.
Subsurface seepage appears to be a runoff, but it happens year-round instead of only happening during heavy rain or snow.
Metals rust in the presence of moisture. The presence of rust in your basement could indicate basement leaks.
Water stains on walls are among the common signs of a leaking basement. Water stains are usually caused by overflowing laundry machines, water leakage, or damaged exterior drainage systems.
A wet basement is a perfect breeding ground for mold and mildew, which may appear in various colors such as black, green, and more. Moisture in basements can also cause mold and mildew to appear on the surface of your crawlspace.
Read More: How to Deal with Molds in Basement
Ways a Basement is Damaged from Leaking Water
Damage to Basement’s Structures
The unwanted inflow of water in your basement can cause unsightly stains on your concrete surface and weaken your basement’s studs, paneling, and flooring. Water can also enter small cracks and make them bigger, damaging the surface of your basement’s flooring and foundation walls.
Destruction of Belongings
A basement leak can cause severe water damage to the belongings stored in your basement. Molds can also grow on your clothing, furniture, and other equipment, rendering them useless if the mold growth becomes severe.
Dirt and Insect Infestation
The excess water that enters your basement can bring in dirt and insects from the outside, which can have catastrophic effects on your home, including health hazards and hygiene concerns.
Can you fix a leaky basement from the inside?
You can do basement leak repairs from the inside or outside of your home. They can also be performed on a leaky brick wall, concrete blocks, masonry foundation walls, or any other material that makes up your basement floor and wall.
Fixes for Water Seepage in Basement
Gutter maintenance is one of the most effective ways to divert rainwater from your home’s foundation. Ensure that you regularly clean your gutters so that there are no clogs. Clean gutters prevent water from overflowing and pooling around your foundation when it rains. You can also add gutter extensions if there were downspouts close to your home.
Plug Cracks and Gaps
If you observe excess water entering your basement through cracks or gaps, plug them in using hydraulic cement or polyurethane. Hydraulic cement is popularly used in stopping leaks in masonry walls and structures and costs no more than $20.
Fix Footing Drains
When water seeps into your basement on the lower part of the walls, you need to resolve the underlying water pressure that pushes water up from the ground. Inspect the footing drains and flush the pipes with a garden house if you see any clogs. This process will help ease the excessive water pressure that causes your basement to leak.
Install a Drain Tile and Sump Basin
A drain tile is a system of perforated pipes that carries water into a sump basin, where a sump pump discharges the water out of the house. The materials needed to install an exterior drain tile and sump basin are inexpensive. However, the process can be laborious. If you want to hire drain tile experts, you can be charged a few thousand bucks for this job.
Make Use of French Drains
Setting up a french drain relieves the hydrostatic pressure and provides a permanent waterproofing solution that protects your basement’s foundation. French drain systems can collect water over their entire length compared to typical drains capable of containing water only in a designated area.
Hire a basement remodeling contractor to help fix water seepage in your basement
Working with a basement remodeling contractor to stop water seepage in your basement can help you save time and money on repairs. Moreover, attempting to solve the water seepage problem in your basement may result in new issues and damage to your home.
If you are looking for a professional remodeling contractor that has been building solid, beautiful & unique living spaces, you are already in the right place. Paragon Remodeling has provided top-notch basement remodeling services in Northern Virginia, Washington DC, and Maryland areas for over 15 years. We ensure that our basement remodels ideas and services will make your investment worth it. The projects we work on are not just renovation projects for us. We want to provide you with the comfort, warmth, and safety you deserve.
Once your remodeling contractor is done with the job, you can call in professional cleaners to make sure that your basement is clean and free of any remaining messes from the leakage.
Meanwhile, if you’re worried about spending too much money on such cleaning services, you’ll be glad to know that professional cleaners charge their customers fairly and consistently.