Why basements leak

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What causes basements to leak

There are many reasons for a basement to suffer from leaks. If no basement waterproofing system has been installed, moisture will ultimately find a way into a basement, cellar or any other underground space in a property. Hydrostatic pressure from the surrounding earth will force water through any weak points in the basement walls or floor leading to cracks, leaks and damp problems. Regardless of how strong your basement walls are it will never be invulnerable from leaks.

Even when a waterproofing system has been put in place, leaks can still occur if it has not been fitted properly or the wrong type of systems has been installed.

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Basement leaks from failed waterproofing

A waterproofing problem that Peter Cox see time-and-time again is a failed tanking system. Tanking is the process of waterproofing a basement or cellar with a waterproof cement or slurry, and it is a perfectly acceptable method of waterproofing in a great number of circumstances. However, tanking is vulnerable to cracking from extreme hydrostatic pressure or ground vibrations and movement around basement.

Do not worry though, if your property has cracked tanking there are other basement waterproofing systems available that will stop the leaks for good.

Bowing basement walls

When pressure causes the walls of a basement to begin bulging or curving inwards this is referred to as ‘bowing’. If you have noticed bowing basement walls in your property then this is a red flag and a warning that the wall is in danger of cracking or breaking, leaving your home exposed to water ingress and flooding.

Bowing and retaining wall cracks caused by hydrostatic pressure

Basement walls are particularly susceptible to bowing, cracks and leaks as they are retaining walls surrounded by Earth and soil that is constantly in the process of shifting and expanding as it soaks up rainwater from the ground. This is commonly referred to as hydrostatic pressure and it exerts massive pressure any wall it comes into contact with.

In fact, basement walls are under constant pressure from the dirt and rock that surround them, like a submarine under water. Combine this with the constant freeze and thaw cycles of our climate zone and you get a continual battle of shifting forces pressing in against your basement.

How much does it cost to repair bowing basement walls?

For serious bulges and bowing of basement walls Peter Cox may advise that you require wall anchors to secure and strengthen the wall to ensure that sustained hydrostatic pressure will not result in any cracks or flooding.

Installing wall anchors are a solid and permanent solution, however they are not cheap and require the technicians to dig around the frame of the property. Ultimately however the only accurate way to determine the cost of fixing bowed basement walls is to consult a qualified and accredited structural waterproofing surveyor and allow them to assess the basement. It could be the case that wall anchors are not required and another form of structural repair would be more suitable for your circumstances.

Cure your leaking basement

Internal waterproofing systems from Peter Cox use a mixture of wall waterproofing, basement floor drainage and sump pumps. These systems manage and displace water ingress into your basement rather than trying to hold it back with a concrete barrier. This reduces the impact of hydrostatic pressure and movement in the surrounding earth while still leaving the basement in a dry and useable state.

Internal basement waterproofing are also cost-effective and sufficiently hidden from view. This makes them an ideal choice for a domestic basement conversion.

Peter Cox: professional solutions for leaking basements

If you want to talk to a basement waterproofing expert about a basement leak in your property then contact Peter Cox today on 0800 633 5712 or contact us online using our online contact form.

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