Where I live, we have several months out of the year that are packed with devastating storms. These storms have been known to damage entire communities and leave many people's lives turned upside-down. During the days and weeks following these storms, we pull together as a community to help each other rebuild and repair the homes we live in. We have worked alongside some of the best damage contractors in the country. This blog contains a ton of information about the things that we have learned from those contractors during these devastating times each and every year through the worst possible storms.
Basement moisture is a common problem for modern homeowners. Despite being a common issue, basement moisture is a serious problem that needs to be addressed quickly. Allowing moisture to continue infiltrating your basement could lead to structural damage and health problems for your family in the future.
You can tell when your basement has moisture problems by checking for condensation on basement walls, humid air in the basement, or the odor of mold and mildew in the basement.
Identifying the source of the moisture is critical when it comes to successfully waterproofing your basement. Here are three common causes of moisture in residential basements, and some things that you can do to prevent them from interfering with the quality and condition of your home in the future.
1. Rain or Groundwater
Water that originates outside and finds its way into your home can wreak havoc on your basement. Basements are located below ground level, which exposes them to the moisture that exists in the surrounding soil.
Excessive amounts of rain or groundwater can easily cause your basement to exhibit moisture issues. Fortunately, there are some things that you can do to prevent rain or groundwater from coming into your basement.
You can start by ensuring that there is proper grading around the foundation of your home. The ground should slope away from the foundation to encourage water to move away from your basement.
The slope of the ground near your home's foundation can change over time as a result of settling. You should have an experienced contractor evaluate your property regularly to determine if slope adjustments are needed.
You will also want to maintain your rain gutters and downspouts. These components work together to move rain safely away from your basement walls.
Groundwater can be kept at bay by applying a waterproof membrane or exterior drainage system to your basement.
2. Moisture-Producing Appliances
Home appliances can be another source of moisture contamination in residential basements.
A lot of homeowners keep major appliances like a washer and dryer in their basement. Dryers can be especially problematic when it comes to creating moisture.
The warm air generated by the dryer changes the temperature of the air in the basement. As this warm air comes into contact with the cool basement walls, condensation occurs.
All appliances that could potentially increase air temperature or cause fluctuations in basement humidity levels must be properly vented. You can also install a basement exhaust fan or add insulation to the areas where condensation occurs.
Contractors who specialize in waterproofing services can help you determine the best approach when trying to control condensation caused by moisture-producing appliances in your home.
3. Subsurface Drainage Issues
A home with a missing or damaged subsurface drainage system will always experience moisture issues in the basement. A professional contractor who specializes in drainage systems should be called in to help address drainage issues.
If your home is older and doesn't have a drainage system, you can have the contractor install a floor drain, sump pump, or French drain to help control moisture levels in the basement.
If you already have a subsurface drainage system but you are still having moisture problems in the basement, you may need to repair or upgrade your drainage system.
An experienced contractor can evaluate the hydrostatic pressure surrounding your basement walls, the saturation level of the surrounding soil, and your unique moisture issues to recommend a waterproofing system that will protect your home more effectively over time.
Controlling moisture in your basement is critical to the longevity and safety of your home. Work with a waterproofing company, such as Central Penn Waterproofing, to ensure your basement is protected against the dangers of moisture infiltration.