Your home is your biggest investment. Would you let something that can be fixed lower your property value and comfort? A wet basement creates a variety of problems and decrease your home’s value by 10-20%. Learn More.
Water is a necessity. You need it to survive. You need it to bathe, cook and clean. But other than coming out of your faucets, you do not want or need (leaking) water in your house.
Not all homes in Virginia have basements – mostly due to soil type, frost line, and flood threat from storms and hurricanes – but those that do need the proper attention. If your house has a basement, you need to be on the lookout for any signs of problems like water intrusion.
Leaking water in your basement means trouble for you, your family, and the rest of your home. It can ruin stored items, furniture, and electronics, as well as lead to mold growth and unpleasant odors.
Would you want your loved ones exposed to these unhealthy and unsafe conditions? Of course not. Whether you notice an increase in humidity, see a puddle of water on the floor, or have an all-out flood in your basement, it’s important to address these issues right away.
And the expert team at JES is here to help you! In this section, we’ll address common questions and concerns we hear from homeowners like you about wet basements and basement waterproofing.
Let’s start with typical problem signs indicating basement water intrusion in your home.
What Do I Need to Do First?
In order to fix your wet basement you need to find the source of the problem.
Often, a musty basement, wet drywall, efflorescence and leaky basement walls are signs of a basement water problem.
Find your basement waterproofing problem here and learn more about the cause.
Why Do I Have These Problems in My House?
Water can enter your basement because of a variety of reasons including plumbing leaks, poor drainage, and foundation wall cracks. No matter how it got there, it’s never good to have leaking or standing water in your basement. If you can trace the water back to its source, great! If you’re confounded by where it came from, it’s time to call in an expert inspector – like one from our JES team – to complete a thorough evaluation of your home and find the culprit.
One major issue affecting your home that leads to water in the basement is soil – the type of soil your home was built on and the health of that soil.
There is a variety of soil types across Virginia – sand, silt, clay, and a combination of the three. Sandy soils tend to drain water faster, silt has more intermediate drainage properties, and clay is more likely to hold onto water and expand and contract as it become saturated and dries out.
Here’s a look at how soil can impact water intrusion and your home:
- Clay Bowl Effect
Obviously, a large hole had to be dug in the ground to accommodate your home and its foundation. Once the foundation was poured and walls were constructed, a gap remained between the structure and the existing earth. The soil that was removed during the excavation process was then replaced or backfilled around the foundation walls. This soil that was disturbed is looser and fluffier than hard-packed, untouched soil. Because of this, water collects in the soil immediately surrounding the house, creating a “clay bowl” of sorts. This water then puts pressure on foundation walls, causing cracks, and allowing water to seep inside.
- Hydrostatic Pressure
This constant force exerted on the walls by saturated soil is known as hydrostatic pressure. When this force becomes too much for the walls to handle, they will begin to crack and move inward. Water can easily find its way in through any cracks and openings, and your home’s structural stability takes a hit.
- Soil Settlement
As the backfilled soil around your home settles over time, it will sink towards your foundation at a sloped angle. This allows water to easily run next to your foundation and contribute to hydrostatic pressure.
Here are some other common causes of water in your basement:
- Ineffective Sump Pump System
A sump pump system is essential in keeping water out of basements, and it is the heart of basement waterproofing systems. If a basement has an older, failing sump pump, water will only continue to collect in the basement.
Sump pump systems commonly are installed in metal basins in the floor with lids that rest on top of the basin and have openings for the discharge pipes. Some may not have lids at all. These are ineffective systems that will only cause more problems. The metal basins can easily rust and corrode, and partial or nonexistent lids allow water to evaporate back into the basement. This results in unpleasant odors and moisture issues that defeat the purpose of the sump pump in the first place. Objects and debris also can easily fall into the system and damage the pump if the sump pit is not completely covered.
- Improper Exterior Drainage
Like settling soil, if you have clogged or above-ground exterior drainage pipes, water can easily puddle next to your home and find its way inside any crack or gap in porous block foundation walls. Above-ground downspout conductor lines also are unsightly tripping and safety hazards, so placing these lines in the ground and directing them far away from your home is the best way to keep water from downspout conductor lines out of the house.
- Clogged Footing Drains
During your home’s construction, a footing drain was installed just outside the foundation walls to help keep water away. But it can easily clog and allow water to collect by the walls, like with settling soil and problematic exterior drainage systems. Preventing this is difficult, and so is cleaning and flushing the drains.
Mother Nature can be unpredictable and harsh, and Virginia sees its share of wild weather. Heavy rainstorms can dump a lot of water on the ground with nowhere to go, and it can find its way inside through saturated soil and wall cracks. Hurricanes and nor’easters often bring flooding with their torrential rain, as well.
You can read more about these issues on our “What Causes Basement Water Problems?” page.
Why Should I Fix My Wet Basement?
Now that you’ve learned about some of the symptoms and causes of your wet basement, aren’t you ready to tackle these issues once and for all?
Your basement is part of your home’s foundation, and a dry basement is important to your home’s health. If you have a wet basement, it’s uncomfortable, can increase your energy bills, and even cause health problems.
These are some of the ways your home and your family will benefit from basement waterproofing:
- Improved Health
Mold loves nothing more than wet, damp areas. If you’ve got water intrusion in your unfinished basement or even behind drywall or paneling, odds are pretty good that there also is mold growth. By tackling seeping water with reliable repair solutions, you’ll keep the mold monsters and unpleasant odors at bay. Choosing to have a dehumidifier installed also helps curtail mold growth that can lead to issues like asthma and allergies, and it will improve the overall air quality of your home.
- Protecting Structural Stability
Water could be finding its way inside through wall cracks and gaps, which also means the safety of the structure could be at risk. Why would you want to subject your loved ones to an environment that could cave in at any moment? By properly waterproofing your below-grade area, you also are ensuring a longer lifetime for your home.
- Better Energy Efficiency
Basements below grade tend to be cooler and damp, and those with water seepage will experience even more of a temperature decrease. This can lead to the above floors feeling cold and the need to keep cranking up the heat for a more comfortable living space. This, in turn, leads to higher energy bills. Why waste money on the latter when you can invest in permanent waterproofing solutions that will save your home and your wallet in the long run?
- Increased Real Estate Value
There are so many different factors that can affect a home’s real estate/resale value, but it’s important for you to be aware of the condition of your home regardless. By having trusted, proven waterproofing solutions installed, you’re ensuring your home’s health and value for today and tomorrow. A clean, dry home is more attractive to home buyers as opposed to a house with leaks and mold. The Virginia Residential Property Disclosure Act employs the “buyer beware” mentality. So, while you don’t have to disclose much as a seller, it still is important to be honest about any known issues when it comes to leaks and waterproofing. This sets clear expectations regarding the quality and condition of the home.
How Can JES Help Me?
You won’t have to worry about the waterproofing process when you choose to work with us because rest assured, you’ll be in good hands every single step of the way. We have highly trained, best of the best teammates whose No. 1 priority is you. Your safety and satisfaction with the job is what matters most to us, not trying to make a sale. We’ve got professional engineers on staff, we have standardized pricing, we don’t use subcontractors, and we’ll be there for you after the contract is signed and solutions are installed. That’s the JES Difference!
Contact us today to schedule your free inspection and estimate with one of our expert inspectors! During the appointment, our inspector will thoroughly evaluate your home and recommend the best solutions to address your specific basement problems. He also will discuss your budget and financing options.
When you decide to have us complete a repair project, we will schedule the work with one of our highly trained installation crews. The crew members will treat your home with the utmost care and respect as they install the best solutions proven to protect your home. If something comes up during the process, no need to worry. We won’t leave you hanging. Our team works until the job is done right and you are 100% satisfied. We also offer service and maintenance opportunities to ensure the systems we installed continue to operate at a high level to protect your home.
The crew was very professional and did an excellent job with digging the inside perimeter of my home for the drainage and install. JES was the most reputable and offered a great lifetime warranty. I am very pleased with the outcome and now have a very dry basement.
~ Karen F., Fredericksburg, VA
What Will You Use to Fix My Leaking Basement?
Our expert crews will install only the very best solutions that are proven to permanently address your wet, leaking basement for good. It’s our commitment to you and your family. The products we use are manufactured right here in the United States, and they are designed to work together to give your basement the complete protection it deserves.
Our professional basement consultants will work with you every step of the way to design the best basement waterproofing solution to uniquely fit for your home’s repair needs.
These are the solutions and how they work:
- Interior Perimeter French Drain System – The most effective waterproofing method involves interior drainage. Our BasementGutter™ system is placed in the sub-floor throughout the basement’s perimeter to catch leaking water. This water is then directed to a sump pump system to be pumped out of the home.
- Grated Drain Pipe – If you have leaking stairs or a walk-out doorway that allows water intrusion, we can head that off by placing grated drainage pipe in front of the stairway or entryway. These sections can easily be tied into the rest of the perimeter BasementGutter™ system.
- Sump Pump System – Once the leaking water is intercepted, it needs somewhere else to go other than your basement floor. The BasementGutter™ channels water to a reliable SafeDri™ sump pump system, which will then pump the water out of your house through discharge pipes. We offer various pumping systems based on your waterproofing needs, including a backup battery option.
- Dehumidifier – Part of keeping your home healthy and dry is ensuring the air quality. Our powerful, energy efficient dehumidifier will clean and filter the air in your basement and home, control the moisture and humidity, and reduce odors and potential mold growth. It is self-draining, meaning there are no buckets or reservoirs to worry about emptying, and it can be directed to drain into your perimeter drainage or sump pump systems.
- Egress Window, Window Wells – Whether you want to brighten up your basement or bring your livable space up to code, our egress windows and window wells will help keep your home safe and bring more natural light into the basement.
So, How Much Will Basement Waterproofing Cost?
We’ve saved the best for last. This is one of the most-asked questions we hear from homeowners. And rightly so. Your home is probably the most significant investment you’ll ever make, and you want to be sure you’re using the best, cost-effective solutions to protect it.
On average, homeowners can expect to spend approximately $4,000 on basement waterproofing, with various projects typically ranging between $2,000 and $10,000. The return on investment from basement waterproofing is estimated to be around 30 percent. But the health and structural and safety benefits, not to mention peace of mind, are priceless.
Every home is unique, and each project calls for different solutions. We can customize solutions specific to your repair needs. Your inspector will take into consideration your repair goals, the severity of damage or problem areas, square footage, and your budget. It’s simply not just a “one size fits all” fix. So, what works for your neighbor down the street may not necessarily be what your home needs.
Contacting us for an expert opinion is your best bet. We will not try to throw bandages on the problems, push you to buy “everything but the kitchen sink,” or offer sub-standard quick fixes.
So, what’s holding you back from a project that will protect your home and your family? Take a proactive approach at the first sign of trouble and let the experts at JES give you a hand! We are eager to help you create a safer and healthier living environment!
We’re Here To Help You Find The Best Solutions For Your Crawl Space…
We’re here to help you find the perfect solution for your home, and find out the source of your moldy crawl space problems.
Requesting your free inspection takes 60 seconds, and you can download your Free Homeowner’s Guide to Crawl Space Repair immediately!