Preventative maintenance for basement


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Old 07-27-16, 05:18 PM
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Preventative maintenance for basement

Hey everybody. I was looking into buying a new house. Well new to me anyways. My house probably be built sometime before 1950. It would have a basement in it as well. I'm sure though that basement, even if it does not leak now will leak in the future and I was wanting to be able to take preventative steps to safeguard against that. I was reading up on Rayon waterproofing and some of the reviews that came in we're pretty positive when it came to cinder block basements. I want to know what you're all thoughts were on this. Am I able to do anything to prevent a basement from leaking, or is this something that is best left to a place like B dry. The house will be in either Louisville Kentucky or southern IN.

Thanks for helping.
 
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Old 07-27-16, 06:13 PM
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IF the house was built before 1950, it is doubtful it will have any proper exterior waterproofing as in today's modern construction methods. Proper drainage around the perimeter as well as with having gutters and downspouts properly sized, slanted and drained away from the foundation is a must. Remember, proper waterproofing of walls of a basement is always done from the outside. If that can't be feasibly done, then french drains are installed to take the intruding water to a pit and pumped to the exterior. Exterior waterproofing is often not a DIY project.
 
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Old 07-29-16, 04:28 AM
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Thanks chandler! One of the houses I was looking at had water coming in between the wall of the basement and the basement floor. The outside seemed to slope well but I didn't think to look at the gutters. I'll look up French drains and see what that takes.
 
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Old 07-29-16, 05:49 AM
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Basements from years ago were never intended to be living space. In a cold climate a frost wall for a crawlspace can be 5' of concrete of blocks, so often they just added a few feet more to make it a better utility space. Some got lucky and the basements remained reasonably dry, but they were never sealed against moisture vapor which passes right through concrete or blocks. If you buy a house with a basement, don't consider converting that space to finished living space. Many threads here about the related problems. I will add a related link.
Understanding Basements | Building Science Corporation

Bud
 
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Old 07-31-16, 08:24 PM
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Thank you for that link. Very informative! So if I find a home that had a block basement I had pretty much not even consider trying to waterproof it or build rooms down there?
 
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Old 08-01-16, 03:38 AM
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It all depends on how it was waterproofed on the exterior. While there are less opportunities for voids in a poured concrete foundation wall they can leak also. On an older home there is always the chance of cracks developing no matter what type of foundation it is.
 
 

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