Tips For a Dry Basement

stock-photo-3164773-executive-home-bar-and-entertainment-roomAccording to A Pew Research Center study, 16% grown adults between the ages of 25-31are living at home with their parents.  The trend seems to be one that is not likely to decrease as more and more of these adults see the financial hardship they face after finishing school. Living at home with their parents gives them the financial help to pay off student loans, and other debt acquired during their college years.  If you thought a dry, finished basement was not necessary, think again.  A basement that has leaks, or has excessive moisture in your home, needs to be taken care of right away, as it can provide you with the extra space you need. To read more about this topic follow the links below.

What to do, and not do, as we face flooding 

As we face flooding following record snowfall, here are some tips from plumbers and government officials:


• Remember that basements weren’t designed to be lived in, so every basement potentially is vulnerable to water due to heavy rains and/or rapid melts of huge amounts of snow.

• Check your sump pumps to make sure they are properly plugged in and operating.

• Keep storm drains and downspout drains free of leaves, debris and ice.

• Make sure your sump pump is clean of mud, clay and other debris by flushing with a garden house or by using a wet-vac to suck out the debris.

• Know where your basement floor drain is and make sure it is clean and draining properly. Run a hose into the drain for five or 10 minutes. If the drain can’t keep up, it’s probably time to call a plumber to clear it out. Connor Finnerty of FHI Plumbing & Heating said most emergency calls for basement flooding could have been prevented with routine maintenance. “Ninety percent of it is going to be because people neglected their floor drain in the basement and have not flushed out their sump pumps.”

The secret to a dry basement

The first step if you have water infiltration is to eliminate any outside contributing problems that are relatively easy to deal with.  If there is improper roof drainage or an inadequate ground slope around the house, there may be the problem.  It could also be your neighbour’s drainage directing water toward your house.

If those issues aren’t causing your problems, there’s still no need to panic.  Waterproofing your basement isn’t necessarily a huge investment.  Depending on your specific circumstances, there may be only minor flaws which a basement professional can fix fairly easily.

You may have cracks causing water leakage, which result from shrinkage over time, soil settling, hydrostatic pressure, or buried debris around the foundation.  Conterra will provide you with crack repair services that will completely fix the problem.  They specialize in exterior drainage systems to address any foundation leaks.  They will excavate the surrounding soil, exposing the top and sides of the footings.  The cracks are repaired, then all the walls are waterproofed using state-of-the-art materials and methods.  A new weeping tile is installed, which can be connected to a sump pump to gather and discharge excess water.

How to Waterproof Your Basement

Most homes are sitting on a treasure trove of useful space: the basement. However, many basements in older homes are damp or leaky, and make unsuitable choices for a new rec room or bedroom. Before you can start any basement remodeling project, you have to keep the water out.

1.Evaluate the perimeter of your house. You must ensure that the ground next to your foundation slopes away from the foundation, not towards it. Backfilled dirt around the foundation will typically settle lower than the surrounding dirt causing the ground to sink in and slope towards your house. If necessary, add dirt up against the foundation to create at least a 2″ per foot (that is, a drop of 2″ for each foot you move away) slope against the foundation. Make sure that the top of the dirt is at least six inches below the sill plate so that there is no ground contact which may cause certain building materials to rot in the future.

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