There aren’t many things worse than walking across your basement, and suddenly getting your feet wet. Maybe the kids spilled something on the carpet or Fido had an accident. Then you realize there is a lot more water there than either could produce. You realize you have a basement leak! Now What?
Sometimes it can seem like keeping your basement dry is a never ending battle, but, keeping your basement dry may not be as hard as you think. There are some simple steps you can take that will keep your basement dry and comfortable.
While it may sound like a little thing, as a home inspector I occasionally come across outdoor water spigots that were leaking. Even what you may consider a slight drip can develop into several gallons of water per day, running down the foundation wall. A simple fix could have prevented the problem.
Gutters and downspouts need to be kept clear of all debris. Check them for any damage that would prevent water from flowing properly through them. Rainwater spilling out on a concentrated area can create and erode low places in your grade and allow water to concentrate against your foundation wall and in time can deteriorate the concrete or concrete block joints. It will also start seeping through cracks in your basement wall and cause a basement leak.
Where the water exits at the bottom of the downspout is a critical area. It must be allowed to flow away from the foundation. This can consist of a simple splash block or a drain pipe extension as needed.
Make sure the grade around your house slopes away your foundation wall. Sometimes that is not an easy task, but is a must to keep the drainage water away from the foundation. Any low areas found next to your foundation should be filled and graded away from your foundation.
Fix any plumbing leaks as they happen. This may seem like a no-brainer task, but in some cases, these leaks are really hard to notice. Discoloration of flooring is sometimes the only indication of a possible leak.