Unless your house or building was constructed in the past 10 years chances are you do not have an adequate basement waterproofing installation. At the time Toronto heritage houses were build a layer of tar was the only waterproofing material they had. A lot of new constructions use just “damp proofing” as the building code for new residential requires minimal preparation for the building’s foundation.
In the past 10 there has been a rapid development in basement waterproofing technology with many new options of basement waterproofing membranes and other materials.
Usually there is a combination of reasons that may lead to a leaky or wet basement. Poor drainage of accumulated water at the foundation walls , cracks and holes that have already occurred, concrete erosion and soil grading issues. Manufacturing of waterproofing has advanced to the point that a new waterproofing system installation can last almost a lifetime.
Some of the most common waterproofing membranes are:
Bituminous Waterproofing Membrane
Made from a petroleum-based asphalt material and used as an exterior membrane. Used in waterproofing and roofing, it is extremely resistant to water and moisture. It can be torch applied or a self-adhesive membrane and can be used on foundation walls and roofs.
SBS Rubberized Membrane
SBS is a self-adhesive composite membrane consisting of an SBS rubberized asphalt compound which is laminated to a high-density polyethylene film. It is one of the most popular membranes used in basement waterproofing as it is a high-performance waterproofing barrier. The membrane is very flexible at low temperatures, prevents lateral water movement and has CCMC approval.
Liquid Waterproofing Membrane
Usually used in the interior, liquid waterproofing has an easy application and is low in odour. You can apply it with a paint brush or spray gun and offers the best coverage when it comes to membranes. Some of the benefits are that it is easy to apply, provides a seamless solution as it cures into one solid membrane and has the flexibility to expand and contrast, adapting to temperature fluctuations and structural movements.
Elastomeric Waterproofing Membrane
A membrane that can last for decades, highly waterproofing and can be applied by roller and paintbrush. It is water resistant and it is recommended for exterior waterproofing. It provides outstanding adhesion and reduces crack transmissions. It is also not affected by extreme temperatures.
Crystalline Waterproofing Membrane
This waterproofing system is a liquid that is applied to the interior basement walls. The solution applied penetrates the concrete walls and creates crystals that feel hairline cracks and capillaries in the concrete, a chemical reaction happens when the liquid touches the concrete and interacts with the lime that creates a moisture blocking seal.
A working, well maintained sump pump can be the difference of 2 feet of water in your basement or just a wet floor. It can save you thousands of dollars in water damage and for the city of Toronto, which in the past years has been experiencing severe and sudden flooding, we highly recommend the installation of a basement sump pump.
A sump pump is usually located at one your corner of your basement or crawlspace close to a wall. There is a sump pit that the pump is submerged in, the idea is that when water falls into the sump pit and reaches above a certain level, the sump pump automatically turns on and starts pumping the water through a pipe leading outside and away from your property.
How to test your Sump Pump
First thing you should inspect is the discharge pipe leading outside your home. Check it for debris or clogs and clear the area around the pipe.
Test the sump pump by pouring approximately 20 liters of water down the sump pit, you should see the float activator arm raise and you should hear the pump suction kick in. In the pump does not activate then check that all wires are plugged in, or pour a bit more water. If the float is not rising then there might be an issue with your float mechanism. If the pump doesn’t make any sound then chances are there is a mechanical problem. In the case the pump is working, make sure you don’t run it dry for more than 20 seconds, you can damage the motor.
How to maintain your Sump Pump
Your sump pump should be tested at least twice a year. An exterior inspection can show you if wires got loose or debris and mud has accumulated around and in the sump pit. Make sure you clean the area around the sump pit because you want water to find its way in and you don’t want any dirt or debris to clog the pit or get caught and burn your motor.
Sump pumps should be replaced every 10 years or so. New models of sump pumps have features like a wireless connection so they can warn you if they are activated or an issue occurs. You can also invest in a backup battery for the sump pump as it will not activate if electricity is down.
If you would like to have a sump pump installed or replaced, in Toronto or the GTA, give Interhome Waterproofing a call today, we offer free onsite assessments:
As we transition to fall and rainy days come it is a good time for you to check your basement for leaks. A leaky basementmight not be a big deal right now but can become a costly emergency during the winter when frozen soil increases the hydrostatic pressure on your exterior basement walls and water from melting snow can enlarge any foundation cracks you may already have.
A wet basement is not only inconvenient, it is a sign that your basement walls have already some deterioration, and like every other part of your house, upkeep can save you money in the future. Sealing and filling existing cracks, or waterproofing your foundation is an investment that ensures the longevity of your property.
TOP REASONS FOR A LEAKY BASEMENT
Not having proper drainage. Eaves, troughs and downspouts have to point water away from your property. Makes sure your downspouts are guiding water at least 4 feet away from your exterior walls. Clean any blockages and repair any damage that allows water to drain on the side of your house. When water accumulates around your foundation wall the hydrostatic pressure increases and that is how cracks or fissures are formed.
Melting snow. Basements radiate heat, which melts snow and frozen ground around them. This creates a layer of water around the exterior basement walls, and as we mentioned above, it is the pressure of this water that cause damage to the foundation. Although you cannot help your basement from radiating heat, this is why basement waterproofing is so important. The different waterproofing membranes seal your walls so water cannot penetrate.
The wrong type of soil. The type of soil that surrounds your foundation and basement walls can play a big role in moisture retention and irrigation. For example, clay soil is best because it absorbs water and traps it by expanding, it provides moisture protection and better irrigation. Adding stones and mulch on top of the soil on your home’s perimeter also helps irrigation.
Your landscape slope. Grading of the ground away from your foundation walls is extremely important, especially in low laying areas. A proper graded slop naturally guides water away from your property. The less water that accumulates around your home, the less water damage your basement walls will occur.
If you already have signs of a wet basement then give Interhome Waterproofing a call. We offer an on-site inspection and provide you with basement waterproofing solutions, from foundation crack repair to interior or exterior basement waterproofingsystems, or the simple installation of a new sump pump. We serve Toronto, GTA and surrounding areas. Give us a call today to discuss your basement waterproofing needs: 416-836-5253
Have you noticed standing water in your yard? Do you have water appearing on your concrete basement floor? Saturation of water around your property’s perimeter and water coming up from the ground can quickly result in flooding but can also cause damage to your foundation. The pressure of the water and the porous property of concrete can cause cracks on your foundation walls and floor. What you need to understand is that cracks will allow water to flood your basement in a case of a heavy rainfall for example, but more concerning, if cracks are left unrepaired then the cracks will at some point compromise your home’s structural integrity.
When water is not properly drained from the soil around your property then your solution can be a weeping tile system.
Exterior Weeping Tile
An external weeping tile system, or French drain as it is also called, is a drainage system that collects water pooling at the bottom of your foundation footings and drains it away from your property. A weeping tile is comprised by a perforated pipe that is placed at the bottom of your foundation footings. The work starts by excavating a ditch around the property walls deep enough to expose the foundation footings. The tiny holes in the plastic pipe are there to allow water to drip into the weeping tile and be discarded. The perforated pipe is then covered by a long open “sock”, made from rot-proof material, which prevents soil plugging up the hopes of the pipe. Gravel is placed on top of the pile to accommodate drainage of the pooling water down to the weeping tile. Finally the removed soil is placed back on the ditch and packed tightly.
Interior Weeping Tile
There are times that an exterior cannot be installed because of the lack of space available at the perimeter of your property. An alternative would be an interior weeping tile installed at the bottom of your foundation footings inside your basement. The process is similar, a small ditch is excavated around your basement’s walls, a perforated pipe, “sock” covering and gravel are placed in place and the ditch is filled in again. The interior weeping tile guides water to a sump pump which pump the water away from the property.
If you need the opinion of a basement waterproofing professional to determine if a weeping tile installation is the right solution for your then contact Interhome Waterproofing for a free on-site assessment. We are basement waterproofing experts with over 15 years of experience, offering a 25 year guarantee on our work. We serve Toronto and across the GTA. Give us a call today: 416-836-5253
The condition of your property’s foundation is the most important thing when it comes to structural integrity. With time, cracks, fissures and even block separation can appear, sometimes visible on your interior basement foundation walls, sometimes the only thing that points to a cracked foundation is a wet basement.
If you don’t have a waterproofed basement then chances are that water from the outside of your property is finding its way into your basement through the cracks. Basement waterproofing can protect and reinforce the integrity of your foundation but also, if a crack occurs, the waterproofing membranes will still keep water from seeping through.
But how do foundation cracks form and what causes them?
Here are the major causes of foundation cracks:
Water is the biggest risk to your foundation and in Toronto and the GTA we experience a lot of rain and snow, weather wise. Also, a lot of areas in the GTA are low laying areas, below the water table, which makes them prone to flooding. In either case there two main water pressures to your foundation. Hydrostatic pressure, coming upwards and lateral pressure which puts pressure and your foundation walls. When the soil gets saturated with water it expands and in turn the pressure against your structure increases. This soil pressure is what can cause cracks to your foundation.
Poor Foundation Compaction
At the time of construction it is very important that the foundation concrete was laid professionally and reinforced properly and that the soil around it was compacted. In the case your foundation was not build properly then there is a risk of your structure settling or shifting and that puts pressure to your structure and leads to foundation cracks or even block separation.
Quality and Type of Soil
Expansive soils and clay soils tend to absorb water, and expand, but also shrink when dehydrated. These dramatic changes to the soil’s mass can cause your foundation to settle and in turn create cracks.
Deep tree roots can be very invasive and put pressure on your foundation. If you have big trees in your property then know that roots can grow as far away as the height of the tree. If trees are too close to your structure then their roots can contribute to hairline cracks.
This is usually overlooked as a cause to foundation problem, but after this very hot summer in Ontario, it is something to consider. You wouldn’t guess that lack of water and moisture in the soil can be a problem but when moisture dries the soil shrinks, leaving gaps between the soil and foundation. That can cause the foundation to move and eventually crack.
If you have visible foundation cracks or a wet basement then give Interhome Waterproofing a call. We offer a free on-site assessment where we can investigate where the water is coming through and offer you basement waterproofing solutions to repair cracks and strengthen your foundation’s structural integrity. Contact us at: 416-836-5253
Is your home or property prone to basement flooding? There are steps you can take to protect your property from flooding and installing a sump pump is one of them. A sump pump is, as the name indicates, a pump that is installed at the lowest grade of your basement floor. In the case of a flood water fills up the sump pit and triggers the operation of the sump pump which in turn removes water from your basement expelling it to the outside of your property.
Toronto’s Basement Flooding Protection Subsidy Program offers 80% subsidy, up to maximum $1,750 for the installation of a sump pump system. The city of Toronto has been facing more frequent severe weather events which result in flooding. In an effort to assist homeowners the city of Toronto offers a subsidy for:
Installation of backwater valve
Installation of sump pump
Severance and capping of your external weeping tile connection
In this article we will focus on the sump pump installation subsidy.
What is covered
Installation or replacement of sump pump
Installation of alarm for sump pump
Installation of backup power for sump pump
The available subsidy is 80% up to a maximum of $1,750. That is regardless of the number of devices installed, including labour, materials, permit cost and taxes.
The subsidy is offered to registered owners of single-family, duplex and triplex residential homes in the city of Toronto.
The subsidy is only available to existing homes and not to homes under construction or planning.
Your downspouts must be disconnected from the city’s sewer system. After you complete the installation you have to submit your application within a year to be eligible.
All contractors and subcontractors that performed the job must carry proper and valid license from the City of Toronto, for the installation work and at the time of the installation.
The original invoices must be provided along with your application.
You must not have outstanding tax or debt owed to the City of Toronto at the time of your application.
Finally submitting an application does not guarantee receiving a subsidy, subsidies are issued on a first-come first-served basis.
When it comes to waterproofing your basement there are instances that there isn’t available access to the perimeter of your exterior foundation walls. For exterior basement waterproofing there needs to be a minimum of 2.5 feet distance away from your foundation walls for the excavation to be feasible. This space allows workers to create a ditch and enough space to perform the installation of the waterproofing and weeping tile system.
Another instance is that the hydrostatic pressure is why water enters the interior of the basement under the footing, sometimes seeping in from the floor area.
In the cases above your option is an interior waterproofing system, which includes the application of a waterproofing barriers on your interior walls, digging out and installing an interior weeping tile system in the perimeter of the basement and adding a sump pump that discards water away from your property.
Interior waterproofing involves the following steps:
When it comes to finished basements the lower part of stud walls must be removed to expose the bare basement walls.
When the foundation walls are exposed then repairs are done to any cracks or fissures that have formed.
Digging out and exposing the foundation footings which includes jackhammering the basement floor slab next to the foundation walls.
Weeping holes are drilled into the bottom course of the concrete block for water to drain.
As part of the weeping tile system, a perforated drain pipe is laid next to the footings.
The waterproofing membrane and barriers are then installed on the foundation walls.
A sump liner and submersible sump pump are then installed beneath the basement floor.
The draining pipe of the weeping tile is routed to the sump pump.
The lower portion of the drainage membrane and the drain pipe are then covered by new concrete to fill up the trench along the foundation walls and level the floor.
To determine if interior waterproofing is the right basement waterproofing solution for your home or building you can schedule a free on-site assessment by a basement waterproofing professional.
Interhome Waterproofing has over 15 years of experience in the installation of basement waterproofing systems. We provide exterior & interior waterproofing and weeping tile and sump pump installations. Give us a call today to book your free on-site assessment. We are happy to educate you on the available waterproofing options for your property: 416-836-5253
Do you have a wet basement? Is water leaking from your concrete walls or pooling on your floor? Is moisture and a musty smell present?
Having a leaky or wet basement can have risks on both your property and your health.
Wet Basement Risks to Property
If water and moisture is making it into your basement then that means that there is already some damage to your foundation. If water is finding its way in from cracks, fissures or even block separations then it is also contributing to further deterioration of your foundation walls and the consequences can be dire. Your home’s structural integrity depends on the strength of your foundation and footings. Deterioration of your foundation can lead to severe wall cracks and even to a settling or sinking foundation.
If you have a finished basement then water coming in will sip into drywall, moldings, flooring and other building materials. Where water and moisture is present the growth of mold is a serious risk. Growing mold feeds on building materials like wood, drywall and insulation, this means that there is a breakdown of these materials. The longer mold is left untreated the damage will progress to the point of removing entire walls of drywall to treat the problem. Also mold is accompanied by a strong musky odor and it can affect your indoor air quality.
Wet Basement Risks to Health
The growth of mold in your home can affect yours and your family’s health. Exposure to mold or even mold spores in the air can have a variety of health effects, especially to infants, children, seniors, people with asthma and people with compromised immune systems. Health Canada considers indoor mould growth to be a significant health hazard. Exposure to mold has been linked to the onset of asthma or other lung infections and inflammatory responses.
How to Solve a Wet Basement Problem
A wet basement is a sign of a non-existent or poor basement waterproofing system. A basement waterproofing usually consists of an application of several waterproofing and water-resistant layers on the exterior of your foundation, an exterior weeping tile system at the bottom of the foundation/footings and/or an interior weeping tile system and sump pump.
If you do not have exterior basement waterproofing then water from the outside, from heavy rainfalls or snowmelts, penetrates your foundation walls and leaks into your basement. Also, if you are in a low laying geographic area, water can come up from the ground and sip into your basement.
An exterior waterproofing application and weeping tile protects your home from external water seepage. An interior weeping tile and sump pump gather and expel water away from your property before it gets a chance to flood or cause damage.
If you have a wet or leaky basement call Interhome Waterproofing today to schedule a free basement assessment: 416-836-5253
When it comes to basement waterproofing, one solution doesn’t fit all. The age of your house/foundation, the depth, accessibility to the parameter of your house, the soil type, if the excavation is machinable or manual, the type and quality of materials used, the extend of foundation repairs needed, all these factors and more will determine the basement waterproofing cost.Read More
Through out Toronto and the GTA there are hundreds of home owners dealing with a wet or leaky basement. Considering the volume of water we get in the form of rain or snow melt it isn’t surprising that this very frequently results in water finding its way into your basement. Another reason that contributes to having a wet basement, or even a flooded basement, is if your property is in a low-lying area which makes it prone to storm water flooding.Read More
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