For many homeowners that we talk to about leaky basements, the stages they go through can be summed up as:
- “Well, the leak is not too bad right now. We can wait to get it fixed.”
- “Um, okay, now we have standing water.”
- “Our basement is flooded! Help!”
If any of those sound like your situation, then it is best to call the basement waterproofing experts at New Canadian Drain & Plumbing before the situation gets out of hand. We are licensed, bonded, and insured, and have the experience and knowledge required to solve any of your plumbing needs, from emergencies to proving free estimates on water service replacement to any issue in between.
Signs of Waterproofing Problems
Regardless of the scope of the problem, a leaky basement should never be ignored. While major waterproofing work may or may not be required, it is important that you understand the four stages of water problems that will determine the course of action needed to resolve the issue.
Mold, Mildew, and Strange Odors
The first stage of any water problem is the gradual appearance of mold and mildew on walls, floors, and around drains and window wells. Besides the odor, the presence of mold and mildew is obvious if you or someone in your household experiences unusual eye irritation, congestion, wheezing, or difficulty breathing when in the basement. All of these can be a health risk, and waterproofing your basement is one possible solution.
Small Cracks and the Appearance of a White Powder-Like Substance
Another sign of a problem is the appearance of something called efflorescence, a white powder-like substance that shows up on the basement walls or floor. Walls and floors are made of concrete — lime, sand, and gravel — and the bonding agent that holds these components together breaks up over time when water is present. Because ground water picks up minute levels of acid naturally present in the ground, it will eat away at the concrete and leave streaks of efflorescence behind. This is another sign that you may need to work with a basement waterproofing specialist before more damage occurs.
The Presence of Standing Water
The third sign of a waterproofing problem is standing water. It is one thing if your drain becomes clogged and overflows, but it is something entirely different if you notice standing water or puddles somewhere else in your basement. This is indicative of cracks or holes, which can sometimes be filled with polyurethane or hydraulic cement to stop the leakage.
Flooding or Foundation Issues
The final and worst sign of a water problem is if your basement floods without significant rainfall, or if you notice the walls appear uneven, bulging, or notice a buildup of sand or natural sediment along the walls or elsewhere in the room. In a case like this, no amount of temporary waterproofing can repair damage to your home’s foundation.