A wet basement is a common issue in many houses. A wet basement doesn’t imply that the house was poorly constructed or some catastrophe has hit the house. In most cases, it is caused by a combination of factors such as time and natural forces, though we cannot rule out human-made forces that can lead to a leaky basement or accelerate it. That is why you need to know about various leaky basement solutions so that when the time comes, you know which option to consider to stop the leaking.
In understanding the leaky basement, it is essential to note that there are sources of leaks and causes of leaks. Causes of leaks are the occurrence of nature that emanates from the outside, and the sources of leaks are disruptions that occur in the structure of the home’s foundation. These two must come together to cause a leak in the basement, and as such, any leaky basement solution should consider both. Check this link to learn more.
In This Post:
What Causes Leaky Basements
So far, the main cause of leaky basement is hydrostatic pressure that emanates from the underground due to water accumulation.
Though it may take time for you to realise it, there is a lot of water underground. It all depends on the level of the water. In some areas, water is very close while in others, it lies very deep in the ground. This is what is known as the water table in geographical terms. When it rains, the water table rises and get absorbed through the soil and finally reaches the foundation of your home. This creates hydrostatic pressure that is exerted on the foundation. Over time, the foundation becomes weak and develops leaks. Water gets a way and seeps through these leaks and joints and end up in your floor and walls.
The foundation is surrounded by loose soil that also absorbs water during a heavy downpour. The area around the home also receives a lot of water from the gutters if they are clogged as well as downspout if it is not connected to divert water far away from the house. Over time, the soil gets saturated and expand, creating lateral pressure against the home’s foundation. This can create a leaky basement. One of the leaky basement solutions experts prefer for this cause is unclogging the gutters and connecting gutter extensions to divert water away from the foundation. You should also reshape your landscape to slide away from home.
This is another thing that can lead to water seepage through the walls and to the basement though it is not related to water pressure. Windows wells are designed to allow air and light get into your basement through the windows. However, they collect water during the rainy season if the drain isn’t working properly due to clogs or damage. The collected water seeps through the window frame and to the walls.
We have looked at the causes of the leaky basement. Now let’s see the sources.
The floor of the basement is usually a concrete merely two to four inches in depth and doesn’t play any role in the structure of the foundation. The floor is meant to offer a clean and solid platform. The hydrostatic pressure from the underground is mostly responsible for the cracks that occur on the floor. The cracks let water to flow to the basement through them, especially when the hydrostatic pressure is high.
The foundation walls are usually strong blocks that support the entire structure, but the weak points in them are the joints that seep water in. As the house settles, some minor movements can result in cracks in the joints that form a good base for water seepage.
If the mixing ratios and process of pouring the concrete are done correctly, there cannot be porosity in the concrete. However, if that is not done, then the concrete can be porous and allow water to seep through. Over time, the water will get to your walls through the porous spots in the concrete.
One of the best leaky basement solutions is installing a sump pump in your basement if it wasn’t installed during the construction of the home.