Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) About Basement Leaks
Question: Why does my basement leak?
Answer: The cause of basement leaks vary and may depend on the type of basement you have. There are two primary types of basement walls constructed in the building industry. They consist of the poured basement wall and the cinder block construction. Poor grading or drainage around the basement can cause a high water table. Cracks in basement walls, rod holes, mortar joints around beams and windows, and clogged or obstructed drain tile can allow water to leak into your basement.
Question: What caused my basement wall to crack?
Answer: The majority of cracks in basement walls are caused by the settlement and shrinkage of concrete and mortar joints. This normally occurs during the first couple of years of construction. Settlement and shrinkage cracks are usually vertical in poured walls, and may be both vertical and horizontal in block basements. Frost and heavy equipment can also cause basement walls and footings to crack and move. Cracks caused by frost and heavy equipment are usually diagonal. They are more likely to occur during the construction phase.
Question: I have a poured basement wall. Can it be repaired from the inside of my home?
Answer: Repairs on poured basement walls are routinely performed from the inside of the basement with waterproofing sealants. In many instances, a patio, porch, garage, or deck prevent an outside repair. While hydraulic cement and sealants that shrink may provide temporary relief, the wall must be properly prepared and a professional grade non-shrinking waterproofing sealant should be applied to correct the problem. Photograph numbers 2 and 4 provide good examples. As a result of a competitor attempting to repair a cracked basement wall with hydraulic cement in photograph number 2, the crack subsequently leaked and subjected the customer to the expense of removing and replacing drywall, insulation, framing, and carpeting. Notably that leak was within inches of an electrical outlet. The professional grade non-shrinking sealant used by American Basement Waterproofing in photograph number 4 comes with a lifetime warranty.
Question: I don’t see a crack in my wall. How is the water getting into my basement?
Answer: The source of some basement leaks can be difficult for homeowners to find, especially in block basements where water can leak at the area where the basement wall and floor meet. Call American Basement Waterproofing to schedule an estimate.
Question: I have a block basement and it leaks along the entire wall at the area where the basement wall and floor meet. What has to be done to repair this problem?
Answer: Basement walls that are constructed with cinder blocks with the problem you have described may require the installation of a sub-floor drainage system. Call American Basement Waterproofing to schedule an estimate.
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