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Basement Waterproofing and Cove Seepage

Basement waterproofingAs a homeowner, you should have a good grasp of terms such as basement waterproofing and cove seepage. This is because water leaking into the basement of a building can compromise its structural integrity. Some potential causes of such water leaks include natural deterioration of concrete over time. In short, you should waterproof your basement to prevent possibly catastrophic leaks.
The cove is the joint formed at the point where the basement floor and wall meet. Therefore, cove seepage is water that leaks into a building's basement through this joint. In most cases, cove seepage occurs during the wet (rain or snow) season. This is because a prolonged wet season is likely to cause ground water level to rise due to increased hydrostatic pressure and consequently seep inside buildings through cove joints. Thankfully, waterproofing your basement can prevent water from seeping into your home through cove joints.

Basement Waterproofing

Basement waterproofing entails the use of various construction techniques to prevent ground water from seeping into a building. This is particularly important for any structure built below ground level or at ground level. There are three main ways of waterproofing a basement: interior waterproofing, exterior waterproofing, and installing interior wall and floor sealers.

Interior Basement Waterproofing

The majority of interior water drainage systems work by draining underground water underneath the basement floor and alongside foundation footers. For instance, you can waterproof your basement from the inside by installing interior drain tiles. It is worth noting that these are not real tiles but perforated plastic pipes that building contractors usually bury beneath basement floors and next to foundation footings. To install these tiles, a building contractor removes about 12 inches of concrete flooring around the inside perimeter of a basement. After this, the contractor digs a trench that goes all the way to the foundation footing and then lays a bed of washed gravel throughout the trench. After doing this, the contractor lays perforated pipes wrapped in "filtration fabric" around the basement connected to a sump pump. Before pouring concrete to cover the drain tiles, the contractor may add more washed gravel. With such drain tiles in place, underground water will seep into them and flow to the sump pump instead of seeping into the basement.

Exterior Basement Waterproofing

You can hire a professional to install an exterior waterproof membrane to prevent water from seeping into your home's basement. In general, such a membrane consists of asphalt modified urethane that completely seals foundation walls. Building contractors usually cover waterproof membranes with heavy duty plastic drainage boards to help channel water away from the foundation of a building. Exterior drain tiles offer another effective way to waterproof a basement. These tiles function in the same way as interior drain tiles. However, contractors lay exterior drain tiles around the outer perimeter of a building's foundation.

Interior Wall and Floor Sealers

If you do not fancy digging trenches for laying drainpipes inside or outside the foundation of your home, you could opt for interior wall and floor sealers. Waterproofing sealers are chemically formulated mixes. After application, these mixes create insulating layers that are impermeable to water. It is worth noting that these mixes are available in different forms including spray on sealers and paint on sealers. In summary, unless you have the necessary skillset, you should probably hire a building contractor to waterproof your basement. Depending on the location of your home and soil topology, your contractor could install interior or exterior pipes to waterproof your basement as well as prevent cove seepage.  

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