Wet basements are one of the worst nightmares that homeowners experience. They could be as a result of poor grade sloping, poor concrete mixing and drainage of gutter spouts among other issues. Experienced contractors are equipped with the right knowhow, tools and equipment to effectively waterproof your basement externally. There are several techniques that are used to externally waterproof basements and they are discussed as follows:
External waterproofing membrane
This is the most popular external waterproofing technique for the past three decades. Basically, the method involves using polymer and tar based waterproofing materials to create a membrane that is impermeable to water on external walls. Given that the technique is skill-intensive, only a professional can effectively manage it. The method involves the following:
â�¢ Excavation – Technicians dig down to foundation footings so that they can create ample space to work comfortably
â�¢ Cleaning and prepping walls â�� Any loose mortar, soil or debris is removed from the walls to ensure that the exterior membrane will hold well. If the wall is made of coarse brick, pare mortar may be applied to make sure that the waterproofing membrane sticks to the wall as required.
â�¢ Application of waterproofing membrane â�� Depending on the material that the membrane is made of, spray or towels may be used to apply the waterproof membrane to the wall
â�¢ Once the waterproof material has passed the curing stage, the material that was originally excavated is backfilled
Start from the beginning
Itâ��s really true that a problem cannot be solved until its source or cause is identified. The same principle applies when it comes to waterproofing basements. Issues that may be contributing to a wet basement should be identified and addressed to prevent further damage. Solutions you can opt for include extending gutters and downspouts to drive water away from the house. You can also realign the angle of the slope gradient. Both of the above will ensure that water does not get into the basement and as a result the issue doesnâ��t reoccur.
Plastic and vinyl sheeting
While it is often used as a waterproofing technique, itâ��s only a temporary solution. It can serve to waterproof your basement for a while, but not too long. If used for long, the sheeting is likely to trap water, thus making the problem worse. However, itâ��s useful if you live in an area that rarely has rainy weather.
As you may have noticed, the external wall of your house could have cracks already. These cracks easily trap moisture, which, if left to accumulate, can leave you with a wet basement in no time. To prevent that from happening, you can opt for crack injection with polyurethane, which allows for expansion. This will effectively stop water from seeping into your basement. Again, this is a task that will require skilled manpower as excavation may be necessary.
Exterior waterproofing drainage
An exterior waterproofing drainage reinforces the effect of an external waterproofing membrane. An exterior tile drain, for instance, will drain water away from the basement wall thus reducing pressure on it.