Take the Embarrassment Out of Having a Wet Basement

One of the most embarrassing predicaments of homeowners is having a wet basement. When wetness or unwanted water rests in the interior, it gradually damages the foundation, framing of the walls, and other materials in your foundation. Waterproofing a basement is the only answer to stop this recurring problem.

Diagnose the Reason for Your Wet Basement Floor

A wet basement can be traced back from two major sources: seepage or condensation. You must find how water enters your basement in order to know which of the two causes the problem. Check out the walls for cracks and holes, and if the problem seems to be seepage or condensation, here are ways to treat condensation and seepage -induced moisture.

Treat the Cause of Your Wet Basement

Waterproofing a basement can cause you cash, but the investment is worthwhile. Check the gutters, spouts, and window wells, if you find that your issue comes from seepage. Gutters and spouts can get clogged with fallen twigs and leaves driving water to seep into the basement rather than flowing out away from it. Install gutters and spouts should you not have them yet, and ensure they are directed away from the foundation. Make sure window wells are installed and fully covered to prevent water.

You have to change the temperature of your basement, if your wet floor is caused by condensation. During wet seasons, close all windows. Cover them to prevent moisture from developing, and insulate cold pipes if there are any are present. Restore the right humidity level inside your basement and to decrease dampness, use a dehumidifier. If you do not have one, purchase one. Enriching ventilation is the only key to removing wetness.

A wet basement caused by seepage or condensation is fairly easy to treat. Basement waterproofing costs should not add up to a fortune particularly when the problem could be fixed by installing a downspout or gutter. However, if your wet floor problem stems from other more serious sources, waterproofing it could be more costly.

Your basement is an essential part of your house and the foundation, so before you start into any major work on it, make sure that you find out everything you need to find out or else it can be agonizing, long and expensive. It is always recommended that you seek the advice or an assessment from a professional waterproofing company.

 

Cracks in Basement Walls

foundation repairDo you have you a tiny crack in your basement wall? You may think that this isn’t a very big deal and it’s not really letting any water in. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. A basement wall crack which may appear tiny on the inside of your home may actually be much large on the outside. Water seeps in through this large exterior crack and then gets into your basement via means of the tiny crack. If left untreated, this tiny crack can even begin growing larger itself. A leaky basement, if not fixed with a basement waterproofing system, will lead to other repair costs, mold, and headaches in the future.

If you live on a lot that has lots of clay materials in the soil, the pressures that it will exert on a small crack on the inside of your wall could cause it to grow very quickly if you don’t get it repaired soon. Even a small-looking crack can lead to standing water in your family’s basement. All basement wall cracks need to be evaluated, no matter how much of a concern you think they may not be. Don’t subject your family to living in a home with a wet basement. If left untreated, it could lead to structural problems for your home and even dangerous living conditions for your family.
 

Fall Season Can Lead To Wet Basement Problems

fallThe fall season is upon us and with it comes many changes around us. Falling leaves and other debris is one of them. Such debris could end up in your gutters. This could lead to all sorts of other problems. Add that to something like an improperly placed downspout and pretty soon your home could end up with a wet basement. Luckily, there are things that home and business owners can do to prevent such things.

The first and simplest action to take is cleaning the gutters and downspouts throughout the fall and winter months. The second action is to review where  your downspouts are and make adjustments accordingly. In most instances, they should be pointed away from the building and extend a minimum of five feet away from the building’s foundation.

If they all appear to be in order, it’s always a good idea to ensure that water from the lawn, driveway, patio, window wells or other nearby properties is not the source of the flooding. In some instances, it may be necessary to add topsoil around the building’s perimeter, buy a window well cover or install an alternate drainage system to address those sorts of water intrusions.

Of course there are other elements that may be contributing to a building’s wet basement wall problems. For instance, it may be exacerbated by tie (snap ties) rod hole leaks, condensation, sewer drain backups, broken water pipes, overgrown vegetation, cracks in the walls or hydrostatically induced pressure (improper drainage). Fall is the time to have a good look around and have these things repaired and addressed before Old Man Winter comes and plays further havoc with your basement.

 

Ignoring That Leak in Your Basement Because The Weather Has Been Dry?

moldy damp basementRemember that leak in your basement? So now with the dry weather, it’s not as bothersome, and you’re hanging onto your money and not giving it much thought.

Not a big deal, you may think.  After all, your basement isn’t finished, or maybe you only use part/ or all for storage and the occasional project.  The water will evaporate eventually, right?  Or, you can clean it up with a wet vacuum.

Why panic, right?  And why spend money fixing a leak that really isn’t hurting anything?

Well, not so fast, there, frugal homeowner.  By ignoring a leak in your basement you may be creating other problems in your home and you may be doing so based on an erroneous assumption that fixing the leak will be too costly.

Why Not to Ignore a Leak in Your Basement

Let’s step back and take a look at the consequences of ignoring a leak in your basement.

When seepage occurs in the basement of your home, the water (whether it’s a little or a lot) has nowhere to go except to accumulate in a puddle on the floor.  Along with being messy to step in, that puddle of water can create some real problems:

Increased Humidity – As stated correctly above, water that accumulates in the basement from seepage will eventually evaporate.  That does take care of the puddle on the floor but all that moisture ends up in the air in your home, which drives up the humidity in the atmosphere.  Home HVAC systems are designed to manage humidity in the house, true, but air-conditioning, for example, has to run that much harder and longer to remove all that added humidity from the air.

Ever hear that joke about the electric meter spinning fast enough to cut cheese?  Welcome to your future.

Mold – Mold is an unfortunately common occurrence in homes and it can be detrimental to the health of everyone that lives there.  Mold spores spread easily and are often conducted from the basement into aboveground living spaces, either by HVAC systems or the  “stack effect” that causes movement of air into, out of and through buildings.

Mold spores require three things to grow and spread, two of which – food and warmth — are always present in most basements.  (Food for mold is any organic material, including wood, paper and drywall.)   When the third factor, moisture, is introduced into the environment, even long-dormant mold spores can spring to life and begin causing havoc.

OK, you say, but I’m hanging onto my money right now, and isn’t fixing a leak in a basement going to be expensive?

Not necessarily.  The most common style of basement is one made of poured concrete and the most common source of a leak in such a basement is a non-structural in the wall.

Fixing a crack in a poured concrete wall is a simple process of  injecting it with expanding polyurethane to fill and seal it against future leaks.  Done right by a basement waterproofing professional, the cost will be several hundred dollars, not the thousands you may be imaging.

Of course, if the problem originates with seepage through a masonry wall or is created by hydrostatic pressure under the foundation, the repairs will be more extensive and will cost more but will also eliminate the possibility of mold and humidity that may cause respiratory problems for your family and damage to your home.

So, remember, that leak in your basement, should not be ignored – call a basement waterproofing professional today for an assessment. Most times it’s a free estimate.

Emerging Enterprise- Wise Cracks Foundation Repair Saint John

Basement Waterproofing Adds Space to Your Home

nice family roomBasement waterproofing adds useful square footage to a home and protects its foundation. More than 60% of all homes with basements have existing moisture problems at any given time and up to 90% of homes experience moisture problems within the first 15 years of construction.

Before waiting for a disaster to strike, take the preventative measure of basement waterproofing. Without this, a homeowner is susceptible to water damage in their home which will lead to expensive repairs and a non-functioning basement.

Before the telltale signs of mold and damage appear, to a thorough inspection of the foundation or have a professional do it. Too many homeowners don’t make use of the available square footage in their basement because the room is dark, dusty, and moldy. Waterproofing is a permanent solution that get eliminates the likelihood of structural damage and decreases mold and mildew.

Instead of dreading the walk down the basement stairs, add a new usable space with basement waterproofing. If you have a water in your basement have a professional come in. Their experts will find the source of the water and correct the problem. A professional company can find out where the water is coming from and put in a system to stop that.
Aside from eliminating mold and mildew, add useful square footage to a home today with basement or foundation waterproofing.

Avoid a Leaky Wet Basement with Regular Sump Pump Maintenance

Installing a sump pump drawingOne of the worst thing that can happen during a big rainstorm or melt is suddenly finding that  your sump pump has stopped working. By investing in sump pump maintenance, you will save yourself money and the nasty task of bailing water out of a wet basement if the sump pump stops working, not to mention the cost of potential damage to your property.

Why Do Sump Pumps Break Down?

Unfortunately, sump pumps are liable to wear and tear. These are mechanical devices after all – parts naturally wear down over time. Sump pumps have a number of moving parts, so many of those parts are bound to become worn or loose after years of repeated use, so it’s important that you perform regular checkups to ensure its operating properly. If you’re not sure contact a reputable waterproofing company to perform an inspection for you.

What to check?

#1: The Float

Floats can get caught and tangled in debris, which inhibits the float’s ability to determine whether water levels are manageable or not.  They often just stick sometimes for no known reason. If the float can’t “float” then your pump can’t do its job.

#2: The check Valve:

Another important part to maintain is the valve – particularly the check valve.  This valve makes sure that any water that flows through the pipes from your sump pump only flows away. In other words, the valve ensures that your water does not back up into the pump.  This process subjects the valve to a lot of pressure when the pump operates, giving some opportunity to break down.

#3: Pipes, Hoses & the Sump Pit

The water that gets pumped away from your basement waterproofing systems is not always pure.  Since the water can be contaminated with different elements, it can clog your pipes and hoses over time.  Also clean out your sump pit on a regular basis. It’s not uncommon to find everything from rocks and mud to lime and rust deposits when performing routine maintenance.

#4: The Pump Itself

A sump pump is a mechanical device and will wear out. If the pump is broken, it will require repair and usually replacement.  Most times when in doubt replace it with a new one. This is not something to procrastinate over!  Avoid the stress of a breakdown by maintaining your sump pump on a regular basis. The old saying holds true that “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

Homeowners Should Not Delay Getting that Basement Leak Repaired

wc-slide3Wise Cracks® have been helping homeowners turn their leaky wet basements into a dry solace that will remain dry for many years to come.
As much as it may not seem as if we’re likely to see winter end soon, rest assured that it will end, and spring will make its presence. Spring will inevitably lead to all the snow melting, add to that any rainfall, and many basements will unfortunately start to leak. After a particularly hard winter, the warmer temperatures of spring will bring an excess of water and moisture – which can affect your home inside and out. Prepare now at the first sign of a problem before a bad situation becomes worse. A small issue can quickly escalate into a large and costly project if left untreated.
Wise Cracks® have been happily providing solutions for twenty five years to worried homeowners. Homeowners easily feel some peace of mind while Wise Cracks® provides them the best and most cost-effective solution to a dry basement. Wise Cracks® have been chosen for the fourth year in a row by the consumers, the coveted Consumer Choice Award. This is an award chosen by you- the consumer. This is not something that can be bought.
Waterproofing is science and an art. It takes experience, skill, knowledge, and an understanding of how buildings and homes are constructed in order to resolve their water issues, and Wise Cracks® are the experts in this regard. Wise Cracks® offers its clients a seamless transaction from start to finish transforming their office, home or basement into a healthy usable and dry living space. Contact your nearest Wise Cracks® today and find out why they are “Canada’s most trusted basement repair company.”®

IS MY FLOODED BASEMENT COVERED BY MY INSURANCE?

Floodfacts2Whenever you experience a flooded basement or any other water damage emergency, a call to a professional waterproofing company provide the help you need, and then a call to your insurance company is usually the next call.
A flooded basement is a stressful occurrence. A professional company can assess the damage and quickly provide an estimate for repair. It’s important to quickly help people recover through water damage restoration and safely get things to be healthy again through by repairing the damage.
Most times calling your insurance company for help can be a daunting, confusing and intimidating process. Most policies do not cover leaks from cracks, etc. in a basement, but will usually only cover sump pump failure, or water coming up into the basement through a floor drain or sewer back up, unless you have specific flood insurance. Many policies will just cover the damages, and not the actual funds to get the defect repaired, which is even more frustrating, as not getting the repairs done could mean another flood down the road. Many people try and rely on New Home Warranty, but they typically don’t cover defects such as regular settlement cracks.
Even though your options may seem limited, there are companies that specialize in leaky basements. You should chose a repair company that has been established for some time, with a proven track record, and one that uses newer and modern products such as polyurethane injections of cracks, and state of the art equipment for other flooded basement repairs.

 

5 Common Myths about Repairing a Leaky Basement

Injection 10

 

  • You can only do it in the spring/summer or when its dry- Wrong!

 

Interior repairs and modern materials are utilized all year round, even if there’s water pouring in! Exterior waterproofing materials and methods can mainly only be done when the weather is good. A nice dry day with temperatures that will allow the materials to set up the way they were intended. Most of these repairs, if done by an established waterproofing company, can be done even when the deficiency is actively leaking

  • You can only do a repair on the outside- Wrong!

 

This is an old way of thinking. Today’s modern products and methods can seal a leak effectively from the interior of the foundation. There are many companies offering crack injections and interior drain systems that offer long-term warranted solutions.

  • Crack repairs cost thousands of dollars and mean big trouble for your foundation- Wrong!

 

Cracks in the foundation are typically just caused from normal settlement and rarely pose any further structural problems. Cutting edge polyurethane injections are an inexpensive solution to seal a leaking foundation crack.

  • Any handyman or contractor can do foundation repairs- Wrong!

 

Many a handyman or “do it yourselfer” will attempt to repair a foundation leak themselves. Most often the repairs will fail and it will end up costing more to have the repair done professionally. A professional will have to try and repair what was done, plus you’ve already spent money on the first repair attempt, and now you have to pay a professional to do it. Remember that the cheapest price is not always the best choice. Like any service type of business, choose the company wisely. Look for an established foundation repair company that are well established, and have a high degree of integrity.

  • My insurance will cover foundation repairs- Wrong!

 

Although most homeowners will call their insurance company when a basement leak occurs, rarely is this covered by most insurance policies. It would be a good idea if you have a sump pump to have sump pump insurance, or if you live in a flood prone area to have flood insurance. There have been instances where a homeowner’s insurance gets cancelled if they have one claim, and then have another subsequent flood.