Now that winter is over, you’ll want to get outside and enjoy spring activities with friends and family. By spending a little time inspecting your home for common waterproofing problems now, you can potentially save yourself thousands of pounds later.
Broken into sections, we recommend a few things to look for –
Common Waterproofing Problems Above Ground
Check Guttering For Blockages
When checking gutters and downspouts look for dirt, leaves and branches along the gutter line which can cause the runoff to overflow and drop straight down along your foundation. Window wells can also fill with water, causing windows to leak and make a mess. Prevention goes a long way when it comes to your gutters, make sure downspouts are draining away from windows, and they should drain at least four feet from the foundation walls. If not, we recommend adding extensions.
Exterior Ground Slope
This is an often overlooked problem in maintaining exterior waterproofing, what is the soil gradient next to the house? As you probably know, runoff will follow a path away from the house if the soil is inclined properly, and it may have started out that way, but the slope will change over time due to overflowing gutters, ground settling or flowerbeds. A minimum grade must be maintained away from the foundation in order to decrease water seepage, so check the outside ground level is sloped away from the building foundation.
Windows and Well Drains
If you notice a dark spot on the concrete wall after rain, your windows may be the problem. A leaky window may seem to be a minor problem, but it can cause damage and excess moisture that leads to mould growth. In addition, clogged window well drains can fill up with water and add to the problem.
Common Waterproofing Problems Below Ground
Check Basement Walls For Cracks
Now is the time to check your interior foundation walls for cracks and gaps, your floor for cracks or cove joint seepage, any pumps for proper operation, and your basement windows for leaks.
Floor Cracks or Cove Joint Seepage
Unlike wall cracks that can be repaired with no further water infiltration, floor cracks may indicate a serious problem. Soil erosion underneath or around the perimeter of your foundation can compromise the structure and will require immediate attention. A small space between the floor and the foundation, called the cove joint, allows pressurised water to seep from the soil outside your home, through a keyway and into your basement. If you find floor cracks we strongly recommend consultation with a specialist. You can contact our technical team for advice and a list of our Newton Specialist Basement Contractors.
Regardless of size, any cracks with visible water leaking through or moisture discoloration should be checked out quickly by a professional. Finding potential problem areas now means we can assist and recommend corrective action at this stage, to avoid flooding issues later in the year.