Basements are an extremely important area in your home. They could include additional living space, an in-law suite, laundry facilities, or storage for items of sentimental value. All of these are things that you want to protect and the biggest threat to a basement’s existence is moisture and water. For this reason, waterproofing should be considered by all homeowners who wish to protect their basements from the destruction that water can cause.
Waterproofing can consist of applying sealants to interior or exterior walls or the installation of sump pumps or drains in an effort to keep water from seeping in from outside. There are many reasons why waterproofing a basement should be considered.
1. Protect your foundation
The foundation of your home is extremely important because it is what supports the entire structure. If water is permitted to penetrate your foundation, it will expand and contract depending on the weather, resulting in cracks and splits that compromise the structural integrity of the whole home. If you have not noticed any leaks in your basement, taking measures to waterproof your basement will prevent any cracks that will let water in.
This could include applying sealants to interior and exterior walls and installing sump pumps. If you are already getting moisture in, fix these leaks as soon as possible to prevent future damage to walls, flooring, appliances, and possessions in the basement.
2. Protect your valuables
It is always devastating and costly when you have belongings destroyed by water. Valuables are most likely covered by insurance policies but you will certainly need to pay expensive deductibles before anything is replaced and some companies only cover items ruined by extensive floods, not leaks or seepage. Family photos and heirlooms lost to water damage are often irreplaceable and will leave you disappointed and upset.
If you are renting the basement to a tenant, you may be liable for any damages sustained through your insurance policy which will also result in you paying a deductible and possibly having to pay higher insurance premiums in the future. Taking steps to waterproof your basement will keep all belongings and valuables in the basement safe from damage as water spreads fast and damage to a lot of items can be irreversible.
3. Avoid health problems
The presence of water in a basement can often lead to health issues to people and pets in the immediate area. Dust mites usually settle into places where humidity is high and can cause issues for people with allergies or asthma. Damp basements can also act as a breeding ground for mold that can cause health issues ranging from allergic reactions to death if the mold present is black and contains toxic contaminants.
As moisture is evaporated, it can be carried to other areas and ingested, causing illness in occupants of the home. When a plumber waterproofs your home, this will remove the opportunity for seepage to occur in your basement, allowing families and pets to be free of illnesses caused by moisture.
4. Affects energy costs
Preventing seepage or addressing it soon after it starts in your basement will allow you to save significantly on heating costs. A humid, wet basement will cost you a lot as it will be extremely difficult to keep cool in the summer months. In the winter, cracks in a foundation wall will let frigid air in, making it close to impossible for you to heat the basement.
People with water issues in their basements often experience higher energy bills ranging anywhere from 10 to 15 percent. Taking steps to waterproof your basement will address these issues and make your home more energy-efficient throughout the year.