Have you noticed standing water in your basement? Even if you haven’t, your basement may be leaking. What signs should you look for, and what can you do to protect the overall value of your home?
Signs That Your Basement May Be Leaking
There are some clear signs that’ll begin to reveal themselves if you have a leak in your basement. If you haven’t seen water in your basement yet but you still think something’s wrong, keep an eye out for the following:
- Sticking Doors and Windows: When the air in your basement gets damper, the wooden frames around your windows and doors will start to stick. If you’re having trouble getting your basement door open, it may be time to call a contractor.
- Water Damage: If you’re seeing water damage in your basement – evidenced by rotting fabric or stained paper belongings – but you’re not seeing water, you still have a leak on your hands.
- Fogged Up Windows: If you keep your home warm, then any water that gets inside is going to turn into vapor after some time. Water, too, will naturally evaporate regardless of how warm or cool you keep your home. When this water is trapped in your basement, however, it doesn’t have anywhere to go. If you notice your windows fogging up, then, you’ll know that you’re experiencing an unusual amount of dampness in your basement.
- Higher Electric and Heating Bills: It’s more difficult to temperature control your home when you have a leak on your hands. Why? Not only does hot air more easily escape from your home, but the dampness in the air lowers the temperature, forcing your heater to work harder to compensate. If you notice your bills spiking for seemingly no reason, reach out to a local contractor for a free inspection of your basement.
- Dampness: Is your hair getting frizzy after you go into the basement? Do you feel clammy or sticky? If you do, then there may be excess dampness in your basement – one of the clearest signs of a leak.
- Unpleasant Smells: Have you cleaned your home over and over again to no avail? Is there a strange smell that seems to be permeating the air? Head down to your basement and give it a sniff. Leaks make the whole of your home smell damp and musty. That smell will be impossible to get rid of until you fill the cracks that have appeared in your basement.
- More Bugs In Your Home: If water can get into your home, so can insects. If you’re seeing more ladybugs in your window wells or if you’re killing more spiders than usual, it may be time to check for a leak, if not an infestation.
How Can You Protect Your Home?
There is some good news for folks who think their homes may be leaking. The contractors in Kansas City, MO, have plenty of waterproofing solutions available to you. You can work with a contractor after a free inspection to determine which of these solutions will serve you best.
Your options will include:
- Interior French drains: French drains in your basement’s subfloor that cover the entire perimeter work to collect seeping water from the walls and floor.
- Sump Pumps: Once the leaking water has been intercepted, it needs somewhere to go instead of back onto your basement floor. The French drain system channels this water to a sump pump system. From there, the water is then pumped out of your basement and away from your home’s foundation so it doesn’t automatically flow back toward your basement.
- Sealants: Sealants are temporary waterproofing solutions that are designed to work between one year and two. You can spray these on your basement walls to chemically redirect water away from your home. But, water will still find its way inside after a while, so it’s best to invest in more permanent solutions.
- Vapor Barriers: Vapor barriers work best when used in crawl spaces. These large, plastic-like sheets are so dense, most gases can’t make it through them, let alone water vapor.
- Dehumidifiers: Dehumidifiers work as temporary solutions to excessive basement dampness. You’ll have to empty a dehumidifier manually, but these fixtures will pull water vapor from the air to better keep your belongings safe. Some contractors offer units that self-drain into sump pump systems so you won’t have to worry about emptying any buckets or reservoirs. Dehumidifiers also are essential in improving the overall air quality and health of your home, as they clean and filter the air, control moisture and humidity, and reduce odors and potential mold growth.
You don’t have to lose your Kansas City, MO, home to water damage. Reach out to a local contractor for an inspection ASAP.