Flooding and dampness are incredibly worrying problems that can quickly escalate and cause huge amounts of damage to your home. In fact, water is one of the single most damaging substances when it comes to your personal property and the structural stability of your home. So, as well as being a pain to clean up, water in your basement could be a sign that there’s even more trouble on the way.
Warning: Water Damage is Serious
If you’ve had water damage before, you are no doubt aware of how costly and time-consuming it can be to fix. A serious plumbing flood can damage the structural integrity of your walls, while settlement in your foundation can cause leaks and dampness in your basement. Whether the water comes from inside or outside your home, however, the damage remains the same! These are the most common problems associated with water damage.
Damaged or Rotten Floorboards
If enough water leaks into your home or dampness persists, it’s very likely you will see the effects on your floorboards or, if the water is in the basement, wooden staircases. Dampness is notorious for causing wood to warp, bend, and even rot. This is not only unsightly and dangerous, but the repairs could be costly.
When dampness takes root in your basement it can quickly spread throughout your house. Rising dampness occurs when cracks or weaknesses in your foundation or basement walls allow water into your home. If the structure of your home is primarily wooden, this can be a huge issue.
Ruined Soft Furnishings
A severe plumbing flood or an influx of water from outside of your home will ruin any soft furnishing or personal belongings you have in your basement. This may seem like a small issue compared to structural damage, but it is upsetting nonetheless, especially if the belongings that are ruined are sentimental.
Drywall has many strengths, but its ability to withstand water damage and dampness cannot be counted amongst them. If you have drywall in your home and you experience flooding or extreme dampness, you could end up having to replace the drywall entirely.
When dampness takes root, it’s only a matter of time before mold and mildew begin to form. While some kinds of mold are relatively benign, others can be actively harmful to your health and well-being. What’s more, mold has a nasty habit of spreading once it has taken hold.
Dampness, mold, and rot—if there are three things more likely to attract pests, we don’t know what they are! Insects like cockroaches and mold mites love these environments, as do rodents like mice. Once you have a pest problem, it can be hard to get rid of. Worse still, many of these pests can do damage on their own.
Recognizing Sources of Dampness in Your Basement
While it is ideal to avoid having any dampness problems in your home at all, it is also important to understand the signs of dampness in your basement. The most common signs of potential leaks or sources of dampness in your home are:
- Cracks in your basement floor or walls
- Increased humidity
- Increased energy bills
- Water pooling in the corners of your basement
- Reduced water pressure
- Standing water
Many different things can cause dampness and water damage in your home. Leaking pipes, broken appliances, external flooding, and hydrostatic pressure pushing water up into your basement through the foundation can all lead to water in your basement. If you see any of these signs, you should contact a professional to have your basement assessed.
Prevent Water in Your Basement
You can end up with water in your basement for a number of reasons. The amount of water you find in your basement is usually indicative of the cause.
Cracks, especially in basement walls, are one of the most common channels by which water makes its way into a home. These cracks can be caused by a number of factors from hydrostatic pressure to extreme weather, but once they form, they will let water seep through from the outside of your home.
- Leaking Pipes
Internal leaks and plumbing floods are common causes of dampness and water in a home. If this is the source of water in a basement, the dampness is likely to be localized to one area rather than widespread (unless it is a severe flood).
- Broken Appliances
A leaking water heater or malfunctioning sump pump can easily lead to dampness and flooding in a property.
- Damaged Foundation
Like cracked walls, a damaged foundation will let water seep into a property slowly and steadily. Damage can be caused by a number of things including sinking and settlement. A damaged foundation often comes with a host of other issues to consider.
If you have waterproofing measures in place already, you should be able to keep your basement clean and dry with ease. All you need to do is ensure they are properly maintained. If water begins to seep in through cracks in your walls and foundation, however, there is little you can do. The best things you can do to prevent avoidable flooding and dampness are:
- Schedule Regular Maintenance
Regularly maintaining your plumbing system and appliances is one of the best things you can do to prevent avoidable breakdowns, dampness, and flooding in your home. Maintenance appointments are cheap and can often be scheduled to cover multiple appliances and systems in one day.
- Keep Your Drains and Gutters Clean
Cleaning your exterior drains and gutters is one of the most effective and simple measures you can take to minimize water pooling around your foundation. This will not only keep your yard in good condition, but it will also minimize the hydrostatic pressure your home is dealing with.
If you notice water pooling in your basement coves, cracks spreading through the walls of your basement, or you find mold forming somewhere in your home, this is a sign that you have a more serious problem to deal with. In such cases, you should call a professional to assess your basement and home immediately. Foundational issues in your home will never go away on their own—they will only get worse. The benefits of professional waterproofing are:
A professional will not only be able to figure out what is the best possible mix of waterproofing measures for your home, they will install them efficiently.
- Value for Money
When you get a professional to install your waterproofing measures, you can rest easy knowing that you are getting professional-grade products and solutions. This will save you money in the long run as a result of increased lifespans.
If something goes wrong after DIY work, you’re on your own. When you have a pro do the work, however, you have the security of knowing that you can call them if you experience any issues.
How We Prevent Water from Getting into Your Basement
If you want to prevent water and dampness from taking root in your home, however, we at Foundation Recovery Systems can help you waterproof your basement. We have a number of products and services which can be altered to suit your home. Here’s what we at Foundation Recovery Systems can do for you.
Vapor Barrier Installation
Basements are naturally damp thanks to their subterranean positioning. Water has a habit of getting into everywhere it’s not supposed to be, after all. Our team can install a sturdy and puncture-resistant vapor barrier in your basement to prevent dampness, humidity, and mold formation. We use WallSeal™ to give homeowners the best possible results. WallSeal™ uses a unique seven-layer plastic sandwich to control dampness and keep your basement dry and clean. This vapor barrier is applied to your basement walls and gives a clean, fresh appearance. If you’re not a fan of the look, however, you can install paneling over the top of it to give the space a less clinical feel.
Bowing and Cracked Wall Repair
Cracks and bowing in your basement walls can cause, and be caused by, dampness, leaks, and other such issues in your basement. Even the smallest of cracks can raise the humidity in your home considerably and cause a range of problems. Worse still, they can be a symptom of a greater problem that is beginning to escalate. If you suspect your walls are beginning to bow or you notice there are cracks spreading across your walls and floor, you should call Foundation Recovery Systems. We have a range of foundation repair solutions to offer. From carbon fiber reinforcement to wall anchors and the patented IntelliBrace™ system, we have a solution for every home.
If you feel your basement or home is becoming increasingly humid, there could be an underlying issue that needs to be addressed. We will identify and repair all underlying problems, but once your basement has been waterproofed, dehumidification may still be required. A good dehumidifier will not only keep your basement comfortable and dry, but it can help ward off mold formation and pests like dust mites. Our energy-efficient dehumidifiers ensure that your basement will stay clean, dry, and comfortable no matter what the weather outside looks like.
Choose Foundation Recovery Systems for Optimal Results
Foundation Recovery Systems has been offering the best quality waterproofing systems and basement repair services throughout Kansas City, Moberly, Springfield, Des Moines and St. Louis since 1993. We treat your home like our home and do everything in our power to ensure that you feel secure and in control at every stage of the process. So why don’t you let us turn your basement into a clean, dry, and stable space? We guarantee our waterproofing solutions will ward off unwanted problems and pests with ease! All you have to do is call us to book a free inspection.