We’ve all seen the sitcoms where the main character goes downstairs to discover a basement waist-high with water. But a wet basement is no laughing matter. If you’ve got an excess of basement moisture, any of a wide array of problems can arise, from mold and mildew to foundation decay.
Waterproofing the basement walls and making sure your foundation is in good repair are vital to keeping a safe and healthy home. Here are a few reasons why:
1. A wet basement invites toxic black mold
Black mold needs four things to survive. It needs cellulose (an organic material found in wood and drywall), darkness, a cool temperature, and lots of moisture. Taking away just one of these things can make it impossible for black mold to take purchase. (Of course, you can also remove cellulose by using the Beyond Basements basement finishing system as well.)
2. A wet basement invites foundation cracks
If there are any places around your foundation where water is pooling – like the window wells or poorly installed rain gutters – hydrostatic pressure can increase, creating cracks in the foundation. And foundation cracks can only make a wet basement wetter, as the water infiltrates further and further. Once a crack becomes a full-fledged leak, related problems will only get worse.
3. If you’ve got a leaky basement, you can forget about that basement remodeling project
Hoping for a home office or media center? The last thing you need are leaking basement walls. The first step in any basement remodeling project should be repairing any leaks and relieving any hydrostatic pressure.
4. A wet basement makes your basement useless
You can’t even hang clothes to dry in a wet basement. You can’t store your old record collection without worrying about warps. You can’t store old books or clothes, because they’ll rot away. Imagine if your kitchen or bedroom was constantly wet. A basement is no different.
5. A wet basement decreases your home’s value
Leaking basement walls are a big problem, and any of the problems mentioned here can have a serious negative effect on your asking price if you should ever choose to sell. Think about it: Wouldn’t you ask for a discount on a home with a wet basement?
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