Are you afraid to look at your basement after it rains? Do you send your kids down to sail their rubber ducks in the puddles? With all of the melting snow and the spring showers, moisture may find its way into your basement if you are not attentative. The best way to keep your basement dry is by preventative maintenance. There are generally two ways that water permeates the basement walls: surface water, which can be identified by stains that start at ground level and work their way down, is often due to accumulated water at the foundation. Groundwater comes from below, and is more likely if your home is on soil through which water cannot drain. Follow these simple steps from Heritage Home Inspection Services, LLC , northwest Indiana’s home inspector, to keep your basement dry:
Though it may seem trivial, keeping your gutters clean is more important to ensuring that your basement stays dry than you may think. A clogged gutter will send a waterfall straight to your basement foundation! Also, make sure that your downspouts drain the water away from the foundation, rather than allowing it to puddle around your home.
Build up the foundation around your home. Landscaping that slopes toward your house will drain the water right towards your home.
Test your sump pump to make sure that it is functioning correctly. To do this, add water to the sump pit until the float gets high enough to activate the sump pump. Sump pumps can collect debris, dirt, sand, and debri that can clog your sump pump! To prevent this, be sure to scoop out the sediment regularly. Since sump pumps are mechanical, they do break down, and you may not know about it until it is too late! That’s why it’s a good idea to install a back-up sump pump in case your current sump pump fails, or you lose power.
If your basement walls have cracks, you can fill them with hydraulic cement to prevent moisture from seeping in. Hydraulic cement expands as it dries to fill the entire crack.