If you have been struggling with moisture issues in your basement, you may be looking for ways to stop the water flow and protect your home. No matter what you may try, you cannot stop leaks in your basement without either water management or prevention. Before you start trying to solve the problem on your own, it's in your best interest to understand what your options are and how to choose the right one. Here's a look at what you need to know about your choices and how to pick the one that fits your needs.
The Difference Between Management And Prevention
When it comes to dealing with a wet basement, water prevention, also called waterproofing, keeps water from entering your basement at all, in any way. It is accomplished by applying a barrier product to the exterior of your basement. With a treatment like this, you won't have any water to deal with in your basement at all.
Water management, on the other hand, doesn't stop the water from entering your basement at all. Instead, it just redirects it once it has already entered. Usually, this type of system includes a drain placed in the floor that routes the water to a sump pump. It keeps the water from reaching most of the basement, but it doesn't prevent it from seeping through the basement wall.
Which Should You Choose?
The right option for your situation will vary widely depending on your financial situation as well as your personal preference. For example, you may not want to disrupt your landscaping as much as would be required to excavate around your foundation and apply an exterior waterproofing product. Or, you may not have the budget for exterior waterproofing, so you need to use a water management system instead because it is affordable.
Water management, or interior waterproofing, is best used when the walls are structurally sound and secure. They should usually be made from concrete or something similar. It's also the best option when you have exterior utility lines or pipes that run close to your foundation, making excavation for exterior waterproofing difficult or impossible.
Exterior waterproofing is best used when the interior of your walls needs protection from further water damage. If the walls are in poor condition and more water would cause them to crumble, you don't want water passing through them. In those cases, it is best for you to opt for an exterior barrier instead. Weeping tiles and the like, as are typically used for water management, won't solve problems like these.
What Else Should You Know?
Before you make any choice of waterproofing method, you need to deal with whatever water is present in your home. If you don't dry out the water, you will still end up with a musty, mold-growing environment. Sealing the walls will then do little more than to preserve the moisture in that space. You'll want to call a flood damage remediation or mold remediation specialist to treat the damage before you seal everything up. Otherwise, you risk facing further structural and mold issues in your home even without the additional moisture to add to the problem.
Any time you are dealing with moisture leaks, you face the concerns about structural deterioration of the walls, mold that can cause illnesses, and many more potential issues. Don't ever dismiss issues like these. With the information here about waterproofing your home, you can make a more educated decision as far as which option is best, and you can prepare your basement properly for the treatment. Talk with a basement waterproofing contractor about your situation today.