2 Sneaky Ways That Water Can Get Into A Basement

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Those who own homes with basements have to be especially vigilant about preventing flooding. Unfortunately, given the many ways in which water can get into a basement, this task isn't always as easy as it should be. If you would like to learn more about how water finds its way into your basement, read on. This article will discuss two sneaky points of entry.

Mortar Joints

This is a problem that pertains specifically to those whose basement walls are constructed not out of concrete but rather one of the following materials:

  • cinder block
  • brick
  • stone

Such walls are not made out of a single, jointless expanse, but out of many smaller units that are held together using mortar. Unfortunately, this mortar tends to degrade at a much faster rate than the other building materials. Deteriorated mortar allows water to seep into the basement through the cracks where two blocks meet.

Diagnosing a problematic section of mortar can often be difficult. That's because the water doesn't always appear in the same place where it leaked in. Instead, it often travels downward along the building blocks and emerges on the floor. If you suspect that your wet or flooded basement is caused by leaking mortar, contact a waterproofing contractor in your area to come and make a professional evaluation.

Pipe Conduits

Even basement walls constructed out of concrete do not represent a single, unbroken expanse. That's because, during the initial construction, holes have to be cut to allow water pipes, electrical conduits, and other utilities to pass into and out of your home. Ideally, according to the Uniform Plumbing Code, these pipes should be waterproofed through the installation of what is known as a pipe sleeve.

Many homes, however, were built before the adoption of these guidelines. In such cases, the pipes were often sealed against water intrusion using a cement-based water plug. These plugs have two main drawbacks. First, they often do not extend through the entirely of the wall. That allows water to find its way into the unprotected area at the middle, where it will make leaks form faster.

Second, the cement plugs themselves are subject to degrade when exposed to moisture. If water seems to be getting into your basement from around your pipes, contact an experienced waterproofer about installing a pipe sleeve. This essentially consists of a slightly larger pipe being installed in the wall and then around its outer edges. The utility pipe is then reinstalled inside of this "sleeve," which protects it from water along its entire length.

For more information, contact local professionals like Allen Plumbing.

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