Arid Basement Waterproofing HAS BEEN Serving New Jersey and New York Since 1963

Identifying the source of water in your basement

There are 3 ways that water gets into your basement: ground water, surface water, and plumbing. Identifying the source of your problem is the first step in waterproofing your basement.

Ground Water (Fig. 1)

Basement waterproofing techniques such as French drains and sump pumps are effective when your problem is with ground water. You know you have a ground water problem if you see water coming in around the perimeter of your basement floor, from the bottom portion of your basement walls, through cracks in the middle of your floor, or around the base of a lally column. Ground water seepage generally occurs between 12-36 hours after a heavy rain begins.

As the water table rises it starts to exert tremendous pressure on your house's foundation. This tension is called hydrostatic pressure. Under such duress, water can find its way through the foundation and into your basement. Our French drains are designed to relieve hydrostatic pressure and cure the groundwater problem in your basement.

Surface Water (Fig. 2)

Surface water intrusion is when water runs toward the foundation and finds an entry point to your basement through a window, a crack, or even through the pores in the upper portion of a foundation wall. Water intrusion from poor surface conditions typically begin 30 minutes after rain begins and ceases 30 minutes after the rain has stopped.

Since surface water is not a result of hydrostatic pressure from below, traditional basement waterproofing techniques will not help. The three best ways to combat surface water is to keeping gutters clean of debris. Depending on the surrounding trees, gutter cleaning may be required more than a few times a year. In addition to keeping gutters clean, make sure runoff water from your downspouts does not sit within 5 feet of your house.  Extending the downspouts further from your house can almost never hurt. Finally, the grading around the house (grass, garden beds, sidewalks, patios, etc.), should be pitched down away from the house at least 5 feet. Ground should be pitched enough that a soccer ball would roll away from your foundation.

Plumbing (Fig. 3)

It may sound obvious and even a little silly, but frequently homeowners who think they have a problem with water coming in from the outside actually have a problem with interior plumbing. Carefully check the plumbing in your house – leaky pipes, failing water heaters, etc. – to confirm that your water problem is not really just a plumbing problem.


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