Before you finish your basement you are going to need to make sure that the basement walls are waterproof first. Basements, as a rule, have higher moisture levels than the rest of your home. There are cracks in the walls, windows that leak and condensation on your pipes that contribute to the moisture levels. Too much moisture in the basement can cause all kinds of problems. If you are wondering how to moisture proof your basement, then here are a couple of ways that you can go about it.
Basement Drainage Systems:
- Wall Sealers: There are a bunch of different wall sealers that you can apply to the walls. You essentially paint them onto your basement walls to keep the moisture out. This is probably the easiest method of sealing the basement walls.
- Sump Pumps: A plastic tank is installed below the floor and the sump pump collects the underground water that is gathering under the floor. You can also use a sump pump with a floor drain.
- French Drains: This is another interior drainage system that goes under the floor to collect moisture. You will have to dig a trench around the perimeter of the basement. You install a perforated plastic pipe and then surround it with gravel. You can connect a French drain to a sump pump
Even with a drainage system that doesn’t meant that your basement walls will stay dry. You may want to consider damp proofing or waterproofing, it is cheaper and easier to keep your basement dry.
Damp proofing your basement involves applying to the walls a tar like material. It is cheap and you can pick it up at a local hardware store. These damp proofing products have limitations, they keep moisture at bay but they don’t prevent it from happening. Once the sealant cures it gets brittle and you can get small cracks along the walls.
Waterproofing is meant to prevent water from getting into your basement even during the worst weather. These products have rubber and that allows for it to stay flexible as your house settles and stretch across small cracks.
Of the two options you are better off waterproofing your basement and the pricing is pretty close. Applying water proofing to your basement isn’t hard and you can get the job done in less than a weekend. It is an easy DIY project and here’s a look at just how easy it is.
In the past homebuilders paid very little attention to basements and keeping them dry, it was just going to be unused space. Now that more and more people are opting to have a finished basement for more living space there are dozens of products and options to keep your basement dry and comfortable. Renovating and finishing the basement is a great idea, it adds to the value of your home and gives you options for media rooms, play rooms or a home office. Before you take on that project you need to make sure that it will stay dry first.