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How to keep water, and serious problems, out of your basement!

Even a small amount of water seeping into your basement on a regular basis can be cause for concern and wreak havoc over time. Besides mold and foul smells, that moisture also can invite pests that need damp environments, like, say, cockroaches. Not to mention any moisture related problems can kill a potential sale contract.

Try these easy ways to keep that water out of the basement:

Check the grading around your house. As water flows around a home’s foundation year after year, it’s reasonable to expect that some erosion will occur. A little bit is not a big deal, but that little bit usually turns into a lot as time goes by. Eventually, you may even end up with a negative grade that diverts water to your house and foundation rather than away from it.

Ensure that all gutters and downspouts are in working order. Water that spills over the sides of your gutters is water that can go anywhere it pleases. That’s why clean gutters are so important for keeping water flowing down and away from your house rather than pooling at the walls of your basement. Clean those gutters at least twice a year (be extra thorough right after the last leaves have fallen) and check that all your joints fit well. Water from the garden hose can help you figure out where problems exist, if any. Splash blocks and downspout extensions further redirect water once it’s on the ground.

Maintain basement window wells. Not every basement house will have window wells. But if yours does and they’ve been neglected for a while, they could be contributing to your water issue. Clean them out, reseal them, lay down some fresh gravel and put new window well caps on to drive water away from your basement windows. You may end up needing an expert to help, depending on their condition and if there hasn't been regular maintenance.

Check the plumbing. It may be unpleasant to consider, but if that water isn’t coming from outside, then it has to be coming from inside. Leaky toilets and shower drains are always suspect, but any part of the plumbing system could have a small persistent leak. If you can find it, you can fix it and stop any potential damage that could be happening overhead, too.

Examine your furnace air handler. When your run your air conditioner, warmer room air is pulled into your air handler, run across something called an a-coil and pushed back out much colder. This creates condensation that drops into a pan below. From there it either evaporates or is discarded through a condensation line. Well, that's if its working correctly. Condensation lines can get clogged causing the pan overflow. If you think your line is clogged to be the case, you can start by trying to flush the line with vinegar but its always a good idea to call in a professional HVAC company to inspect it.

If your basement continues to seep or leak water it is a good idea to look into further waterproofing tactics. Fixing a water issue early is important, before it becomes an emergency or causes mold, which can be much more expensive later on and risk creating more damage.

If you need a recommendation to a reputable plumber or waterproofing company, please reach out. We have a very robust list of trusted contacts we can refer.

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