“Rain Rain Go Away” has been the theme song of 2020 so far! Thankfully, we seem to be getting a small break in the clouds just before “April’s showers” should arrive. It’s normal in times of intense rainfall to see puddles around your home, but when do those puddles mean there could be problems lurking below them? As your waterproofing experts, we are sharing 6 signs rainwater could be damaging your foundation.
- Gutters – If you get about 10-inches of rain over the course of the spring and summer, an average, 1,360-square-foot roof would yield 8,160 gallons of rainwater. That is a LOT of water coming from your roof and flowing down your house. Your gutters and downspouts are responsible for directing that water away from your foundation. Are your gutters clogged? Dead leaves and other debris can clog the gutters forcing water to flow down the walls of your home and down to your foundation. Be sure to keep them clear so they can do their job of guiding water away from your home.
- Down Spouts – Similar to your gutters, downspouts are also tasked with the job of guiding water away from your foundation. If your downspout is dumping water towards your home rather than away from it, you could have a problem. That water puddles and stays rather than flowing away. As it seeps into the ground, it can cause pressure on your foundation causing cracks that it then seeps into. Make sure your downspouts direct water away from your house.
- Puddling around Your Home – Does the land around your home’s foundation slope towards or away from your house? The laws of physics show us that if the ground slopes toward your home then rainwater is more likely to pool towards and settle near your foundation. Engineers suggest 5 feet of a downward slope to avoid water runoff damage.
- Water Stains on Basement Walls – Take a good look at your basement walls. Do you see any stains showing up? Even smaller ones can be a sign of impending damage. If the stains are higher up on the walls they are more likely caused by surface water that has settled and seeped down. If the stains are lower on the wall they can indicate water traveling underground and moving upward. Both are indications that a good inspection is needed.
- Cracks on Walls – Any cracks in your basement walls or crawlspaces should be inspected by a professional. If you see horizontal cracks (they run parallel to the ground) then it is a strong indication that pressure from the surrounding soil is effecting your foundation. The freezing and thawing of the soil is often a trigger for these. Please have these cracks evaluated quickly by a professional. Vertical cracks in the walls are not usually as serious and are often formed simply from a house settling. If you find vertical cracks close to a corner or if they are wider than 1/8th inch, it could be a more serious issue and should be evaluated.
- “Gray Crust” on Walls – If you see a gray crust-like buildup happen on your basement walls or in your crawlspace, this is called efflorescence. Efflorescence occurs when water is present and then evaporates and leaves behind trace mineral content. This could simply be from condensing water with the change in humidity and temperature, but could also mean that rainwater has seeped into the walls and made its way into your masonry.
Finding and correcting drainage problems early can save you a lot of money in the long run. At Aqua-Guard Waterproofing, we pride ourselves on our personal touch, expertise, and complete solutions. Our waterproofing and encapsulation systems address all 5 areas where water can penetrate your home and does so permanently. If you have any questions about the integrity of your basement or crawl space, contact us today for a free estimate. We will have your water problems solved in no time.