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How to know if you need exterior basement waterproofing

How to know if you need exterior basement waterproofing

If you have a wet basement and are wondering if you need exterior waterproofing vs. interior waterproofing take a look at some of these signs of an exterior problem.

If you see wet basement walls that are wet higher up, like dirt level and down that could be an indication the original seal on your foundation is worn off and water or dampness is seeping into your basement walls. Most basement walls have an original basement damp proofing system consisting of a thin coat of concrete over the blocks and then a tar or similar liquid material applied. Over time the tar will breakdown and dissolve in the wet soil outside and then you are left with the thin coating of concrete on the wall. The coating will crack eventually letting dampness or water to get into the basement walls which causes all the symptoms you see inside.

Chronic paint failure like bubbling, discoloration, mold growing in the paint are all signs that the foundation wall is holding dampness. This dampness from behind is getting to the back of the paint and causing it to fail. Basement waterproofing paint like dry-lock will not stop these conditions from occurring and can only be used on unpainted cement block.

The best possible solution for wet basement walls is a full excavation of the walls, repair all cracks, re-coat the wall and install a waterproofing membrane. This membrane is completely waterproof not just damp proof and no water will penetrate the membrane. New exterior footer drains are to be installed and discharged away from the foundation to keep your basement walls dry once and for all.

Interior basement waterproofing systems are effective for ground water issues. If you have dry basement walls but see water seeping through the base of the wall at the floor seam, this can be a sign of ground water build up that has no where to go. Under prolonged heavy rains and or snow melts, ground water can build up around and under your basement and without proper drainage you will see water in your basement at the seams. Often this condition continues even after the rain stops until the ground water is working its way down.

Interior basement waterproofing systems consist of an interior sub floor footer drain that catches the ground water as it is building up and directs it away from your foundation. This lowers the water level and prevents it from building up to the floor and leaking in. Be cautious of systems that install drains on top of the footer as these cannot be installed with a pitch for drainage. They rely on water building up and seeking a level, pushing its way around to a drain or sump pump location.

Contact Reliable Basement Services (630) 777-0539 for a free estimate and consultation of your basement. We will review all options and types of basement waterproofing solutions to help you determine what the best fit is for you and your home.

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