Options Homeowners Have to Prevent Water Intrusion in the Basement

As the lowest point in a residence, basements are natural destinations for water intrusion. Water may wind up in basements from above, gradually soaking through the basement walls or swamping the basement in heavy rains, or it may come from below in the form of rising ground water permeating the basement floor.

flooded basementA wet basement is ground zero for toxic mold growth, as well as a continuous source of moisture and humidity that deteriorates structural materials. It also makes the basement inhospitable for most family uses.

Minimize water intrusion by taking these steps:

Landscape Grading

Make sure the ground surrounding the home’s foundation slopes gently away from the house. When the landscape inclines toward the structure, rain water pools around the perimeter of the foundation, soaks down the exterior of the basement wall and penetrates the basement. Water may seep in through cracks, gaps in the mortar while chronic moisture permeates the concrete itself, causing “weeping” on the interior of the wall.

Maintain Gutters

Clogged, overflowing gutters deluge the outside perimeter of the home with water during heavy rain. Exterior walls aren’t designed to resist a direct cascade of water. Water seeping into walls during storms, or soaking into the soil surrounding the foundation inevitably flows downward into the basement. Check gutters for obstructions and clean them regularly. Installing gutter guards helps keep leaves and other debris out of gutters in between cleanings.

Install a Sump Pump

Installed in a basin in the basement floor, a sump pump safeguards against water intrusion 24/7, automatically activating to remove water as it enters from above or below. Because sump pumps operate only intermittently, make sure it’s checked out annually to verify proper operation.

For more on preventing water intrusion into your basement or remedying damage that occurs, contact Rytech Inc. 

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