Waterproofing a basement is necessary to prevent flooding that can destroy the structure of a home. Any structure that is built below the ground must be waterproofed. Otherwise, ground water will enter the structure. Waterproofing is especially necessary in areas where the underground water table is likely to rise and fall drastically. Such rises in the water table can cause major flooding at unexpected times. The reason that an underground structure will flood is because of hydrostatic pressure. This causes water in the soil to be forcibly pushed into the cracks of the structure. Even if the structure appears to be built solidly, there are usually ways for water to make it through. When water begins to flow through these cracks then the cracks will naturally begin to widen. This can cause the structure to crumble and fall apart. If the basement of a home falls apart than the rest of the home is likely to follow. No home owner would ever think of risking such a disaster, especially since hydrostatic pressure is basically unavoidable without some form of waterproofing.
Sealant Injections On Basement Walls And Floors
Cracks are bound to occur in the concrete structure of a basement. Even if the cracks cannot be seen clearly by the naked eye that does not mean that they are not there. Waterproofing is a way of sealing these cracks to stop water from entering the basement and causing serious problems to occur. Such problems include mold build up, structural destruction and rot. In order to prevent this rot there are a few waterproofing steps that must be taken. The first step in waterproofing a basement is to effectively seal the walls and floor. Epoxies and other sealants can be applied to the interior walls with a pressurized injection method. This will cause the sealants to pass into the nearly invisible cracks in the structure and eventually reach the exterior side of the walls. Many of these injections will last for a very long time. Many contractors also offer warranties on interior sealant injections that can be life long.
A drainage system may also need to be installed when waterproofing a basement. This helps to remove water that has found a way inside the basement. This is not exactly part of the waterproofing method, but is commonly used alongside the sealant injections to further ensure that no water can collect and cause damage to the home’s structure. Many contractors will install a drainage system as an alternative to a sealant, but a combination is most effective. This system is fairly complex and uses dimple boards to direct moisture into designated areas where the moisture can then be pumped from the basement. These systems will typically run on batteries so that power outages do not effect their efficiency. If the system is not battery operated, then it likely has some form of backup power. Waterproofing a basement is a serious job. Talk to your contractor if you have any questions or preferences about how your basement is treated to prevent flooding.