If you have a problem with basement flooding, your waterproofing strategies might not be as effective as you thought they'd be. Waterproofing your basement with an application of waterproof sealant is a good first step. However, to truly protect your basement, you need to start outside your home. The steps you take outside will determine how well-protected your basement is from seasonal rains that can bring flooding. Here are four steps you can take outside your home that will help protect your basement from flooding.
Start at the Perimeter
Take a look around the perimeter of your home – particularly the soil that rests up against the foundation. If the soil around the perimeter slopes down towards your home, rain water will flow under the foundation and into the basement. To prevent this, add additional soil around the perimeter and slope it so that the rain water flows away from your home.
Move Plants Away from the Foundation
If you have shrubbery planted around your home, you need to make sure that they're planted at least a foot away from the foundation. Plants that are growing too close to your home can become a water hazard for your basement. When you water your plants, the flow of water can create a path under your home. When that happens, your basement can flood. In addition, the water can create the perfect atmosphere for mold to grow, especially when the water from your garden increases the moisture level in your basement.
Repair Exterior Cracks
While you're adjusting the slope of the soil and repositioning your plants, be sure to inspect the exterior walls of your basement. Look for signs of cracks or other damage that could invite water to leak into your basement. If you find cracks in the exterior walls, be sure to repair them as soon as possible.
Adjust Your Rain Gutters
If you have rain gutters, you need to make sure that the water flows away from your home. Downspouts should be adjusted so that the water is released at least five feet away from your home. To ensure proper spacing, place your garden hose in the rain gutter and turn the water on. Once you see where the water is released, you can adjust your downspouts accordingly.
Basement flooding can cause serious water damage. You can prevent flooding by properly planning various features around your basement. The simple suggestions described here will help you protect your basement from the outside. If you need help waterproofing the interior of your basement, consider contacting a basement waterproofing specialist.