Any structure that is built underground requires proper basement waterproofing systems, therefore it is essential for homeowners to adequately waterproof their basement if they wish to utilize the space optimally. Either exterior or interior, basement waterproofing is important because ground water exerts force on the walls and the floor of your basement and over time this water can find a way in through minor cracks and other structural defects. To prevent this from occurring and damaging your space there are basically two ways of waterproofing a basement – interior waterproofing and exterior waterproofing systems.
Exterior basement waterproofing should be done at the time of construction. If not, then the following must be incorporated in the design of your house:-
1) Evaluate the perimeter of your house.
As water flows from a higher level to lower, it is important that the ground around your house slopes away from it rather than to it. This will cause water, whether from rain or from downspouts, to roll away from your house. Thus, it will reduce the ground water load surrounding your basement.
Besides this, make sure that the downspouts are angled at a distance at least five feet from the foundation of your house. And if you have a garden, then make sure the plants are at least 12 inches or more away from the walls because rotting vegetation can also increase the water stress in the area.
2) Basement Waterproofing Systems
A sump is a valuable installation for the floor of your basement as it will check the water level. Once the water level rises beyond a certain threshold it will pump the water away from your house.
In case your house is in a location that has a very high water table, consider installing Perimeter drains around your basement as they run all around your basement and keep water away from it. And if any water still manages to bypass into the drainage system, then it uses a sump to pump out the water, keeping your basement dry.
Besides exterior waterproofing, interior waterproofing is also important for basements because you never know when a system might fail to work.
3) Waterproofing the Basement Walls
Waterproof sealants, like RadonSeal, Drylok etc., are available in the market that can be used to coat your basement walls. This serves two purpose – the sealer seals off cracks and other potential routes for water to enter your basement, and the product reacts with any moisture to keep your walls dry.
Although interior waterproofing systems will not work in case of serious water leakage, when it is combined with exterior waterproofing it can keep any basement free from moisture for a very long time. So consider doing the same for your basement.