Waterproofing 101: The Do’s And Dont’s Of Waterproofing

A damp basement or crawlspace can cause health problems because the moisture allows mold and mildew to grow. If you try to waterproof your own basement or crawlspace and do not do it right, moisture will continue to get into the area under your home. The moisture will continue to provide a breeding ground for mold and mildew.

Even if you manage to seal the openings and leaks, if you don’t prep the area correctly, the patch will not work – water and moisture will continue to seep into the crawlspace or basement.

Waterproofing Tips and Tricks

You do need to update your waterproofing at some point if you’ve never done it and the house has the original waterproofing – unless you had your home built and specified more than the minimum waterproofing that builders use on new construction. These tips will help make the waterproofing last longer:

  • Make sure your home has gutters and that the gutters empty the water at least 12 inches away from your home, and that they do not leak.
  • Use drainage systems. Depending on the soil, you might use surface drainage or subsurface drainage.
  • Apply waterproofing to the inside basement walls. You must seal the cracks and holes with hydraulic cement before adding the waterproofing.

You can also install a wireless water leak detector that tells you when your home has a leak in the basement or crawlspace so that you can take care of it sooner rather than later.

Waterproofing Methods

You can find leaks by looking for wet streaks on the walls, between mortar joints, and near windows. If any pipes run into the basement from outside, check around the pipes. If the entire surface of one or more walls, you have to determine if the water is coming from inside or outside.

Dry a section of the wall, then covers it with aluminum foil, taping it to the area you dried with duct tape. After 24 hours, if the underside of the aluminum foil is wet, the water is coming from the outside. If not, the dampness is coming from somewhere inside. Fill the cracks with hydraulic cement, then apply waterproofing materials to bare cement walls.

This waterproofing do’s and dont’s have a big “don’t.” Do not put waterproofing material over any type of wall covering. You must apply it to bare cement.

While waterproofing from the inside helps, it is not always 100 percent effective. You might have to waterproof the outside of the walls. While you have the excavation crew at your disposal, you should consider installing a French drain near the house if the house sits at the bottom of a slope. The French drain will move most of the water away from the house and help preserve the waterproofing.

Additionally, you should add interior waterproofing solutions, such as installing a sump pump and adding a waterproofing barrier between the basement and first floor.

Contact Clint Miller Exterminating

A damp home could cause extensive lung and other problems because of the buildup of mold and mildew. You can prevent these issues by ensuring that the basement or crawlspace is properly waterproofed and by draining water away from the house. When it’s time to waterproof my home, contact Clint Miller Exterminating for crawlspace and basement waterproofing.

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