Waterproofing Guide

ANC – Drycrete Waterproofing – Complete Guide to Basement Waterproofing

Wet basements are no fun and they can lead to a myriad of other issues, including mold, musty odors, poor air quality, cracks, foundation issues, and more. Basement waterproofing is the only long-term guaranteed solution to prevent water in the basement.  

Thinking of waterproofing your basement? There are some steps you can take to prevent water from entering, but consulting a professional waterproofing company will give you the peace of mind of knowing it was done properly.

What is Basement Waterproofing?

Waterproofing a basement comes in many different forms. Sometimes it can be as simple as correcting the exterior grading of the property to prevent water from collecting next to the house. It could be as easy as cleaning the gutters and directing the downspouts out and away from the house.

Oftentimes, the best solution to basement water problems is a sump pump or a French drain system. Interior waterproofing is often less expensive and less invasive than exterior waterproofing.

A common misconception by homeowners is that the basement walls and floor can be “sealed” to prevent water from entering the space and wreaking havoc. The truth is that there is no product out there that will truly keep water out. The pressure of the water is much greater than any paint, adhesive, or spray-on application could ever hope to keep out.

The ultimate goal is to do what you can to reduce water from entering the basement as much as possible. This comes from assessing what the problem areas in the basement might be and then creating a plan of action to correct those potential issues.

Types of Basement Waterproofing

When it comes to basement waterproofing, there are both exterior and interior options. As we mentioned earlier, interior solutions are generally far less invasive and less expensive than exterior options.

Trying to find an interior solution is really the best place to start. Drycrete Waterproofing only offers interior basement waterproofing solutions. While we do not offer exterior waterproofing, we want to go over the basics of what it is for you in this guide.

Exterior waterproofing typically consists of digging around the exterior of your home. The surrounding area is excavated, and then the exterior of the home is treated. This process requires heavy machinery and extensive labor. Not to mention the disruption to landscaping and hardscaping on the property.

We prefer to focus on interior waterproofing solutions. These solutions include the following:

  • Wall cracks or hole injections
  • Sump pumps
  • Interior French drain systems
  • Dehumidification

Let’s take a closer look at each of these.

Basement Finishing, Basement Waterproofing Guide

Wall Cracks or Hole Injections

When there are cracks or holes in the wall, these allow moisture to come in where they are not wanted. One of the easiest ways to waterproof your basement is to inject a qualified sealant into the cracks or holes in order to repair the area and prevent water from coming in.

Dry-Seal 5000 resin is our injection sealant of choice for basement waterproofing. This is a flexible resin that will penetrate through any cracks, holes, and pores that are present. It even holds up through thermal cycles like wet/dry or freeze/thaw, as well as foundational shifts.

Flexible resins like this are designed to help prevent water from making its way through those holes and cracks in the surface. If you notice water seeping through holes and cracks, this is certainly a step you will want to consider for basement waterproofing.

Basement Waterproofing Guide

Sump Pumps

Proper drainage can go a long way to prevent water in the basement. There are two primary types of drainage systems, but let’s start with sump pumps.

A sump pump is installed below the basement floor slab and meant to pump water out of the basement. The reliability of a sump pump depends on the quality of pump that you have and how prepared you are for something like a power outage.

A sump pump is meant to relieve hydrostatic pressure below the basement floor. Ground water enters the sump pump container, (aka sump pump basin) and when the water level rises, it activates a float switch. When the pump cycles it sends water up the ejection pipe and out of the basement. Sump pumps work the hardest when it rains and the ground surrounding your basement becomes overly saturated.

A properly working pump begins to fill with water in this type of scenario and then turns on to actively pump away the water. It helps to prevent flooding in your basement.

Basement Finishing, Basement Waterproofing Guide

Interior French Drain Systems

French drains are another type of water management system that you can use to help deter water from the basement if the sump pump isn’t enough. An interior basement drain system is installed along the perimeter wall of a basement and designed to remove ground water from throughout the basement. Think of it as being almost like a gutter for the basement that collects water and sends it to the sump container to be ejected.

When it comes to basement waterproofing, an interior French drain system is set up like a trench in your basement. The water enters the trench through a bed of crushed stone, runs through the drain pipe system, and is ejected out of the house by the sump pump.

The goal of this type of drainage system is to keep water out of the home and the basement. The water could be sent to a drainage ditch, a well, a storm drain, or even a low-lying piece of ground.

Basement Waterproofing Guide

Dehumidification

Moisture in the basement does not always come from water seeping in. It could come from needing to control the moisture within the basement. If you’ve ever been into a basement and just felt like it was dank and cold, it probably needed some sort of moisture control system.

These systems are designed to help dehumidify the space. Controlling the humidity levels will work to significantly control the moisture as well.

The constant humidity in the basement is not only hard on the surfaces thanks to excess moisture in the air, but it’s also hard on your health. Basements do not have to be wet and cold. The air can be controlled with the proper dehumidification systems.

If you can control the moisture content in the air, you are more likely able to fight against musty odors, mold, stagnant air, condensation, and even structural damage.

When you’re considering basement waterproofing solutions, don’t forget to consider the air within the basement as part of that process.

Why Should You Waterproof Your Basement?

For many people, buying a home is the biggest purchase of your life. Protecting that investment should not be taken lightly. The health of the home begins in the basement and keeping this area dry, clean, and safe is critical!

Waterproofing goes far beyond just preventing water from ruining your belongings in the basement. It also covers a whole slew of other dilemmas that come from that water making itself at home.

Here are a few common reasons you should consider waterproofing your basement.

  • Prevent mold
  • Prevent excess water
  • Reduce humidity in the basement
  • Leaking during rain
  • Water stains
  • Foundation protection
  • Structural deterioration

These are just a few things that waterproofing your basement can help prevent. Imagine if you did not have to worry about water ruining your personal belongings in the basement. What if you could protect your foundation and help prevent the probability of mold growing in your basement?

You can with basement waterproofing solutions.

When Should You Waterproof Your Basement?

Logically speaking, the best time to take action to waterproof a basement is when a home is built. However, if you buy a home that is already existing, you have no control over that decision.

Thankfully, you can waterproof your basement at any time. It’s a good idea to waterproof your basement before your water issues get out of hand. If you have never waterproofed your basement, you should consider taking steps now towards waterproofing.

If you moved into a home with a basement, go ahead and be proactive before you end up facing water issues. Is there a sump pump or French drain system? Have them inspected to be sure they are working properly.

Do you notice cracks or holes in the foundation? What about excess humidity in the air when you enter the basement? All of these are signs that it is time to have the basement waterproofed.

Don’t put it off until there is a major problem to contend with. You can also check out the section in this guide for common signs to look for to waterproof your basement.

What Part of the Basement Should Be Waterproofed?

We’ve talked about many different types of waterproofing. Now, how does a person determine whether they need to waterproof a specific area in their basement, or whether they need to do something to the entire basement?

Most of the waterproofing solutions are designed to help with the entire basement. Some solutions are spot fixes, such as crack or hole injections. The solution you use or choose to try for your home will likely depend on your situation.

When you install a sump pump or an interior French drain system, these systems are designed to work for your entire basement. Some homes have them already, but they may need to be repaired, maintained, or even replaced. Remember that a sump pump will only do its job if it is in proper working condition and is reliable.

A humidity control system is also designed for the benefit of your entire basement and the rest of your home. Even injecting a waterproofing resin into holes and cracks is meant to support the entire basement, even though it is only applied to the necessary places.

The waterproofing solution that you choose to use for your home will depend on your needs as well as your budget. You should plan to work with a professional waterproofing company to determine what type of solutions will be best for your home, and then you can work from there.

There are multiple solutions available. Don’t avoid it just because of the expense.

Basement Waterproofing Guide

Professional Waterproofing Vs. DIY Waterproofing

While there are some solutions that you can try on your own, it is best to work with a professional if possible. If you are unable to work with a professional at the time, it’s perfectly ok to be proactive on your own with some DIY solutions. Just be aware that they may not really be long-term solutions.

If you’re looking for a DIY solution that you can use as a temporary fix, try applying a waterproofing sealant to the walls of your basement. You can also fill in cracks or holes around the basement with an appropriate waterproof sealant.

Once again, you should be aware that this is a short-term fix, but it may help protect your basement in the meantime until you can bring in a professional.

If you have a sump pump or a drain system in place, inspect them to be sure they are working as they should be. Make sure your sump pump is in good working condition and be sure that the float switch is working and clear of any obstructions. A battery backup sump pump is highly recommended to keep your pumps running in the event of a power outage.

You can utilize dehumidifiers in your basement to help control the moisture in the air as well. Dehumidifiers can be purchased from stores with home goods, as well as most hardware stores. They come in different sizes and styles. The goal of these machines is to help reduce the humidity in the air and regulate the air quality.

In a basement, dehumidifiers like this are not really meant to be run constantly and they are often designed for small spaces. You may need more than one, and you should plan to run them for a few hours at a time and give them a break to prevent overheating.

All of these DIY steps that you can take are simple fixes that will get you by for a while. None of them are designed to be permanent or truly waterproof your basement.

The primary difference between DIY solutions and professional solutions is simply that professional solutions are meant to be long-term, while DIY solutions will hold you over for shorter periods of time.

Basement Finishing, Basement Waterproofing Guide

Signs That You Should Waterproof Your Basement

Your basement lets you know when there is a problem. Most of these problems can be fairly obvious if you just know what to look for. Excessive water or moisture in the basement is really not normal.

So many people think that this is just a regular side effect of having a basement, but the truth is that it isn’t. When you are experiencing water, or damage that comes from water, in your basement, it’s time to take action.

Here are some of the top signs that a basement should be waterproofed ASAP:

  • Standing water (especially in the area where the wall meets the floor)
  • Leaks discovered during rains or melting snow
  • Excessive moisture
  • Mold damage

Does any of this sound familiar to you? If so, it’s time to consider basement waterproofing and get these issues taken care of. It’s important for the health of your household as well as the foundation of your home.

Is Waterproofing Expensive?

The cost of waterproofing will vary greatly from client to client. Waterproofing your basement is an individualized solution. Different types of repairs have different costs associated with them.

Even the cost for installation of a sump pump could vary. It will depend on the extent of the installation, as well as the sump pump that is installed.

It’s nearly impossible to estimate the cost and be able to cover every single scenario for waterproofing a basement. As of 2019, the average cost of waterproofing a basement broke down to approximately $3-$10 per square foot of basement.

The cost is widely reliant on the waterproofing methods used and the needs of the client. The best way to determine a cost is to work with a professional. Discuss your needs with them and ask them to provide you with a quote. You can probably get different solution options from them as well.

How to Waterproof Your Basement

If you choose to waterproof your basement on your own using a sealant, keep in mind that this is a temporary fix. However, it could help you prevent excess water in the basement as a short-term solution until you are able to take further action.

Here is a basic outline of the steps you will follow.

  1. Prepare the area by cleaning and removing any paint or coatings that might be on the area you plan to work on.
  2. Use an appropriate waterproof caulking or resin to fill in holes and cracks.
  3. Cover the holes and cracks with a waterproof sealant to seal the space.
  4. Once the sealant has dried completely, you are free to paint that spot again.

This short-term fix can help reduce the water seeping in from those areas for a bit of time. As the foundation shifts and thermal cycles revolve, it may become necessary to take further action.

Things to Avoid When Basement Waterproofing

There are common errors made when waterproofing that can negate the effectiveness of your efforts.

Avoid these things when you waterproof your basement:

  • Don’t expect waterproof paint to fully seal a crack or a leak
  • Always allow water to dry completely, and if you are filling holes or applying sealant, be sure they dries properly as well
  • Don’t ignore proper drainage, as most moisture comes from the soil around your home
  • Don’t forget to check guttering and problem areas on your home that could be causing water runoff
  • Don’t wait too long to address a waterproofing need

The Benefits of Waterproofing Your Basement

There are many benefits of waterproofing your basement. The biggest benefit is that you are protecting your home and your health by waterproofing.

These are some of the most prominent benefits of waterproofing your basement.

  • Avoiding expensive repairs
  • Improving the air quality
  • Reducing the likelihood of mold
  • Strengthening the foundation
  • Finished living space can add value to your home

Drycrete Waterproofing Services

Drycrete Waterproofing offers a variety of interior waterproofing solutions for your home. Our services are designed to bring you peace of mind and protect your home from water that can lead to other problems.

  • Interior Basement Drain
  • Sump Pump Installation
  • Basement Digout
  • Foundation Wall Wrap
  • Foundation Wall Crack Repair
  • Moisture Control Systems

Contact us today for more information about these services or to receive a quote for a service.

Basement Waterproofing Examples

Don’t just take our word for it! Drycrete Waterproofing has more than 5,000 positive customer reviews. Take a look at a few of them here.

You can check out more client reviews and testimonials just like these on our website. We strive to always provide high-quality service to each customer and to help you find the solution that best fits your needs.

Patrick Schmid

3 months ago

Very courteous and professional team who put in a French drain in our lower level in a single day. They were very helpful and responsive in answering questions and did a great job explaining what they were going to do and why. Thank you for all of your work!

Vincent Benenato

a month ago

Everyone at Drycrete was super responsive and very friendly to work with. They took the time to go over a few different options with me and I couldn't be happier with the result. Making sure my basement was waterproof was essential before we started renovating and they made my project a priority. The crew was in and out in one day and very professional. Really nice not having to worry about water in my basement! Highly recommend Drycrete Waterproofing

Joe Brown

a week ago

Efficient, cost-effective and well organized! Drycrete did a great job installing my French drain/sump pump system in Weymouth. Mike did NOT try to up-sell me. He designed a system that would keep my basement dry, and do it at the lowest price of three different companies that gave me estimates on comparable systems. Drycrete booked my date, showed up on time, and did extremely efficient work, finishing my drain/sump pump/battery install in just six hours. The app is great for keeping track of my system and the battery backup. The company is also responsive with questions after the fact. I am extremely satisfied and recommend Drycrete to anyone with basement water issues.

Waterproofing Services

People Talk About Quality.
We GUARANTEE It!

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Waterproof My Basement By Myself?

To some extent, you can waterproof your basement on your own. You should be aware that DIY waterproofing is meant to be a short-term solution and will not provide you with long-term waterproofing.

Do I Have to Dig to Waterproof my Basement?

You can waterproof your basement without digging. There are plenty of waterproofing solutions that you can try before you turn to exterior work that is both invasive and expensive.

Will Basement Waterproofing Affect My Home Value?

Basement waterproofing should increase your home value. Not only will your home be better protected from water damage, but it will give you the ability to finish your home and make the space welcoming and livable as well.

Should I Waterproof My Basement on the Inside or Outside?

We recommend starting with the inside. Most waterproofing needs can be done with interior processes. There are times where an exterior approach may be required but these can be quite costly.

Final Thoughts

We hope that this guide to basement waterproofing is a helpful resource for you. Basement waterproofing comes in many different forms. Every home and need is different, which means the right solution will depend on your situation. But the mission remains the same, a dry, clean space that is vital to the overall health of your home.

Give Drycrete Waterproofing a call and let us help you with your basement waterproofing needs.