Waterproofing your basement can be a challenge. With older concrete, it is possible for regular ground water to seep in through minute cracks which develop in concrete over its natural lifespan. Common causes of wet basements are water builds up and saturates the earth outside the basement and can seep in either through cracks in the concrete itself, through places where the walls are not as tight, as in corner locations, or where basement steps are attached to the concrete.
With the general seepage resulting from pressure from the saturated dirt outside the basement, trenches can be built to divert the water to the basement’s sump pump. With the other two locations—corners and staircase attachments—direct action may be taken on those two areas to curb the flood potential and attempt to waterproof the basement for good!
Here are some tips to work with when learning how to waterproof your basement:
• Identify the source(s) of water entering the basement. If the water appears to be coming in through one spot, attempt to identify that spot and reinforce it.
• Prepare to dig a trench in order to divert any water to the sump, the drainage hole in the basement floor. Be certain that the drainage grate is clear and able to let the water drain freely.
• Develop means to pump water into that drainage hole, the “sump pump.” Be extra careful when dealing with water and electricity; they make a dangerous combination when mixed! Avoid using extension cords to power your sump pump. Be sure to use grounded sockets. Industry has now even come up with a solar powered sump pump; that may be a safer, less deadly option.
• Locate ways to reinforce breaches in your basement’s wall integrity. Watch carefully for leaks around corner joists, staircase attachments, and crawl space entrances. See if your local building supply is familiar with products that other persons in your locale have used with success!