Basements get damp and may collect rainwater. Keeping your basement dry will protect your family and the structural safety of your home. You may need to alter drainage in your yard, add guttering to your home, and treat the concrete foundation inside and out.
Directing Water Away From the Foundation
You will need to figure out how the water is getting in, and that may take guidance from a professional. Experts from 58 Foundations can help with this critical step of waterproofing your basement. If you have water seeping up from the floor, you may need to dig around the foundation. If water is seeping in around the sill plate, guttering may help.
Diagnosing the problem is a critical first step to taking the best steps to fix the problem without blowing your budget. If you aren’t sure how the water is getting in even after hanging out in the basement during a rainstorm, bring in professionals to help you find the source.
When your home heats and cools over the course of the day, moisture condensation can be a problem. Consider updating your HVAC system if the space feels clammy or damp but doesn’t show signs of standing water. Adding a separate dehumidifier may also be enough.
Adding a Sump Pump
If your walls are seeping moisture or if water is seeping up from the floor, a sump pump to get the water out of the space may be necessary. To properly install a safe sump pump, you will need
- a safe outlet
- proper drainage outside the house
- a cover to suit code
If there is any chance that drainage may sweep trash or debris toward your sump pump, keeping the space as clean as possible until you can get the floors and walls sealed is critical. Sump pumps function via a trigger. When the water level in the hole gets high enough, the pump will run. If debris can get in the hole, you may disable the trigger and damage the pump.
Seal the Concrete
Sealing the concrete may take digging down from the outside or prepping and sealing the walls from the inside. Digging down from the outside will be quite costly. Unless the integrity of the foundation is at risk, you may have better luck upgrading your guttering and your landscaping drainage.
Sealing the concrete from the inside will take a specific cleaning or etching to prep the surface of the concrete for the sealant. Work with a professional team to make sure that your sealant process is
- thorough. Drying the concrete may take an outside heat source
- effective. Once the concrete is clean and dry, the curing time and temperature need to be specifically followed.
- Hygienic. Damp basements can be dangerous.
Once a basement is properly sealed, the drainage has been addressed, and the humidity level is under control, you should be in a good position to update the space if you choose to.