Residential waterproofing may be the most over used and misunderstood term in home repairs. First lets define waterproofing – Impervious or not allowing water to pass through. Now this may sound obvious to everyone that reads this but when looking for a waterproofing contractor you will find many misuses of the term waterproofing. Water drainage, water diversion, French drains, sump pumps, dehumidifiers and encapsulation sheets are not waterproofing, they are water management and control techniques.
Basement or foundation waterproofing is accomplished by making the foundation impervious to water. The technique of stopping water from passing through your homes foundation is truly waterproofing. This technique is fairly simple and straight forward and should only be completed by a qualified contractor.
Waterproofing should be done during initial construction of the home, unfortunately many times only a damp proofing product is used, hence your troubles. True waterproofing starts with a clean, defect free concrete or block wall which is then coated with a layer of polymer emulsion membrane to seal the wall. A sheet drain or dimple board is then placed over the membrane to direct water toward the footer drainage system. This all is covered with clean stone and geo textile fabric and then backfilled. This type of waterproofing system will last for many years without clogging and, most importantly, letting water to come in contact with your foundation.
Whether you want to remodel your basement, have a finished basement that is damp or you are building a new home, exterior waterproofing give you the peace of mind that trapped water now has a place to go without ruining your new living space. Basement waterproofing is not something that only must be done to homes with major water leaks and flooding, but should be done in every home that is using this area as living space.
Waterproofing and Foundation Repair
Without proper waterproofing unwanted water can buildup behind basement walls and cause major foundation problems. Water is the enemy of your foundation, it can cause settlement, bowing walls, cracks walls and many other structural issues. Many times homes that show signs of water problems will need to have foundation repairs and waterproofing performed on them to guarantee their structural integrity.
The French Drain
The earliest forms of French drains were simple ditches, pitched from a high area to a lower one and filled with gravel. Later, French drains were made of sections of pipe tile, invented by Henry French, that were laid with a 1/8” gap left between the sections to admit water. Later, the drain tile was designed with perforations that allowed water to enter. Modern French drain systems can be made with perforated pipe surrounded by clean gravel or other material with geotextile fabric surrounding it to prevent clogging. The perforated drain tile provides a minor underground storage volume but the prime purpose is facilitate the removal of excess water to a sump pit. The French drain has been a very effective drain tile system across North America for over 100 years.
Do not get confused by slick advertising and absurd claims, waterproofing stops water from entering your home everything else is a water management system. Remember, don’t get caught up in the big sales pitch of someone that has reinvented the wheel. Waterproofing can eliminate unwanted water from around and under your foundation.
To receive a free estimate from a waterproofing expert in your area contact us online now! Your local MyWaterproofing.com basement waterproofing contractor has been trained to answer questions and fix your home right the first time with the highest quality materials and workmanship in the industry.