To improve the longevity of your basement, it is essential that you maintain it by keep water and dampness away. There are several options for homeowners to choose from, in both interior and exterior waterproofing systems.
Exterior waterproofing is the best option to keep water out of your basement. However you will need a professional to do it and it is costly. Depending on your situation it could cost you up to $30,000. Here are some options:
- Dehumidifier- A dehumidifier will pull dampness and water from the air and collect it in a container. This is a good method to use if you don’t see water, but rather have a damp, musky smell.
- Sump Pumps- Sump Pumps don’t keep the water from coming into your basement, but they will get out the water that does come in before it can ruin your walls and foundation.
- French Drains- These are drains placed in your lawn that allow standing water to flow off into drainage ditches, or other more suitable places. These are various types of French drains to choose from, depending on your particular situation.
- Downspout extensions- Your gutters are catching rainwater from you roof to prevent it from leaking in around the foundation of your home. But if the downspouts are not long enough the water can actually run back into the basement. You can purchase plastic downspout expansions at your home improvement store. However the best thing is to have underground extensions installed that will lead the water away form your home.
- Window seals- If your basement has windows you may be getting water in thought faulty sills around the window. In this case you need to seal up the window to make sure it is watertight.
There are several methods of interior waterproofing available to the homeowner. DIYers can apply these without any special tools or skills. However, before you use any of these methods you need to seal any cracks that you see with polyurethane caulk made for masonry, or for larger cracks you can use epoxy filler
Here are some of your options:
- Densifiers- If you have not already painted or sealed your walls with another produce you can use these silicate-based sealers that are simply brushed onto the walls. These soak into the walls forming a waterproof surface.
- Concrete waterproofing coating- This is a very think product that is brushed on like densifiers but it dries very hard, almost like cement. You cannot use these if your walls have already been sealed or painted.
- Waterproofing paint-. You brush or roll this on the walls just like paint.
The average homeowner can do the interior waterproofing themselves, and save money from not hiring a contractor, but the exterior method is more reliable. You may end up spending more if you do interior waterproofing that may not solve the problem, then having to do it again.