Stop Leaky Basements with Exterior Waterproofing

squeegee on floor

Why do basements leak? Outside of water traveling through cracks or other openings, the simple reason foundations leak is that concrete is very porous and all the foundation elements are underground. Dampness and flooding is caused by the following: the failure of an existing external waterproofing and bridging/wicking due to the raising exterior water levels below and beside the foundation. How do you protect yourself and your family from a wet basement? Exterior waterproofing is the answer.

Exterior waterproofing is your best solution to a wet or damp basement. The first step in the process is to excavate and haul all earth from around the walls being treated. The main benefit to the homeowner is the removal of the expansive clay which eliminates the pressure that causes wall cracking. The goal of exterior waterproofing is to prevent water from entering foundation walls and seams with the hope of preventing the wicking and moulding of any building materials.

Exterior drainage systems are most often based on 4 inch perforated PVC pipes to collect water from around the outside of the footer and drain it to another nearby location. Ideally these locations are substantially lower than the footer they are trying to drain. If there is not adequate pitch it is possible for the drains to actually add water to the foundation rather than drain it from the foundation. Without proper discharge, the water will not be able to drain in time causing back up at the footer. Another problem is that this back and forth movement of water introduces mud, silt and stone into the drain pipes, clogging them at a much faster rate.

Tar Damp Proofing

The past 30 years has seen the development of polymer-based waterproofing products. These products have a low enough viscosity that it can be sprayed directly onto a wall.

This is commonly called “tar damp-proofing”. This uses a degradable asphalt-based covering sprayed directly onto the foundation wall. If this is applied correctly, with the adequate exterior and interior catch all drainage system, it can keep a basement dry for many years. But because it is tar (decayed plant product) the soil pH degrades it. It works very well for the short term as it is flexible. The problem is that with temperature changes and from getting wet and dry repeatedly it gets very brittle.

The foundation wall settles and or moves with slight ground movement (mostly caused by soil expansion caused by the drying and soaking of the surrounding soil). As this happens the tar applied at the footer/wall seam cracks and leaks (recall, this seam is a little deeper underground than your basement floor).  Conterra uses materials that do not have this problem.  We are so confident in our work and solutions that we offer a 20 year warranty.

Conterra Foundation and Repair uses advanced waterproofing materials to apply a superior multi-layer foundation seal that permanently eliminates water penetration. We ensure your satisfaction in every project we undertake. Our methods will obtain superior and permanent protection for you and your family. Contact us today to discuss your waterproofing needs or to get a quote from our basement waterproofing contractors.