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Waterproofers Blog

What causes basements to leak

Clogged eavestroughs or downspouts, and clogged window wells or poorly sealed stairwell doors, also cause flooding and basement leaks.

Older homes – where mortar joints around cement blocks have worn down, older pipes are no longer sealed properly, cracks emerge over time in the walls and floors, or the joints where the concrete floor meets the basement walls start to break down – are the highest risk.

With climate change comes an increase in precipitation.

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WATERPROOFING YOUR BASEMENT WALLS

When you start to see the signs of a water leak along the walls or the floors of your basement, the last thing you want to do is ignore the problem.

Houses, even newer homes, will settle over time, leading to wall cracks in the foundation. Seepage left unaddressed can cause big problems. Consistent basements leaks lead to mildew and mould. Moisture spares no part of any home – bricks, timber, floors, block structures, not to mention a finished basement. Then there are the nasty health concerns around mould and sewage bacteria.

Mildew is typically white or gray, is powdery and grows on top of moist areas. Mould is black or green, and is a larger, more serious problem. Mould usually grows beneath the surface of a moist area.

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WHAT HAPPENS IF MY SUMP PUMP IS OVERFLOWING?

It’s a mechanical device installed in the basement of a home. It sits in a sump pit, around three feet deep and two feet in diameter. The device will pump water that has flowed into the pit via the home’s weeping tile system, out to an area far away from the home’s foundation. It’s a vital tool to have as our climate continues to change and levels of precipitation increase.

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WHY DOES MY BASEMENT LEAK WHEN IT RAINS?

Some of the more simple things can help keep the home dry. Sloping the ground away from the foundation, around six to 10 feet, is one. That way water will be directed away from your house rather than toward it.
Another recommendation – install a hard surface, like asphalt or patio stones, next to the home. And if there is a big snowfall, clear the snow away from the house.

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HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO FIX A BASEMENT LEAK?

Costs for exterior waterproofing starts at around $100 per foot and can go up to $1,000 per foot, again depending on the size and difficulty of the job. The depth of the home’s foundation is a major issue in determining cost.

Interior waterproofing isn’t as expensive as waterproofing around the exterior of the home. This option is for homeowners running a tighter budget, or perhaps their home is located too close to neighbouring properties, making major excavation work impossible. Interior waterproofing can also be looked at as another layer of home protection for those who also opted for the exterior route.

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