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How to Keep a Waterproof Basement

Everyone wants a waterproof basement for their house or business whether it is carpeted and has furniture or if it is just concrete walls and a dirt floor. Many people just call a company that specializes in waterproofing, but due to how expensive the bills can be from professional companies, others would rather do it themselves. The big question a lot of people have is where to start when waterproofing a basement themselves. Below are some easy methods on how to waterproof a basement not only from the inside but the outside too!

Waterproofing the inside of a basement is not only easier, but also cheaper than waterproofing the outside while still proving very effective. One way to waterproof the inside of a basement is to use a silicate-based concrete sealer, which usually costs forty to fifty dollars for a one-gallon can. This method will only work if the walls have not been previously painted or sealed. To apply the silicate-based sealer simply use a paintbrush, paint roller or spray. This sealer penetrates the wall and soaks in so it will not flake or peel off. For the best results, two coats should be applied to the wall. This sealer, once completely dry, can usually be painted over, but it is still best to check the label.

Another way to waterproof a basement from the inside is to use concrete waterproofing coating. The coating is a dry mix which water must be added to for activation. A five-gallon bucket of dry concrete coating mix costs about thirty to forty dollars. This concrete coating is extremely thick and adds a permanent layer to the basement walls. It must be applied with a heavy brush made of tampico bristles and, to give the walls a more attractive look, swirl the brush at the final stage of application to add designs. This coating; however, cannot be applied to previously painted surfaces. It is best to check the label for any further warnings or directions. A person could also simply start with sealing any cracks or holes in basement walls and around pipes that go directly through the walls.

Waterproofing the outside of a basement can be a little more complicated and a little more expensive than waterproofing the inside of a basement, but it is extremely effective. There are many simple and inexpensive ways to waterproof a basement, or at least reduce leaking from the outside into a basement. One way to reduce the chance of leaking is to make sure all downspouts from gutters are discharging water and other debris such as leaves and bugs at least five feet away from the building’s foundation. Another way to reduce leaking is to make sure there are no plants closer than twelve inches to the foundation. Grass is acceptable, but flowers or bushes could potentially draw more water in to stay hydrated causing extra water to leak into the foundation and basement.

If someone would rather hire a company to waterproof their basement, they could get an installer to inject hydroclay around the foundation. Hydroclay is very popular for its ability to hold back massive amounts of water. It is usually injected from the outside of the building into the foundation, and it slowly spreads and coats the outside of the basement walls that are covered by soil. The clay also seeps into the openings not only in the walls but also into the soil where water used to come out of the ground and into the basement.

There are many quick and simple ways a person could waterproof their basement. They could waterproof it from the inside with silicate-based coatings which do not peel or flake off the basement walls, or they could use concrete waterproofing coatings to not only seal water out, but also add a finishing to the basement walls. If working inside is not an option or is not favored, there are ways to waterproof a basement from the outside like simply making sure gutters are draining at least five feet away from the building’s foundation or there are no plants, other than grass, growing closer than twelve inches to the foundation. Hydroclay is also an easy alternative if people do not want to waterproof a basement themselves, although it can be a little more expensive. There are many other ways for people to waterproof their basements themselves, but trying the simple methods listed in this article can save time and money.