How to Stop Foundation Water Damage in Your Home
Water damage is never something you want to happen to your home’s foundation.
What are you doing right now to protect your home’s foundation from water damage? There are, unfortunately, far too many Americans who would probably answer, “Nothing”. And that’s a real shame when you consider that the foundation of a home is arguably the most important part of it.
If you want to keep your home’s foundation strong for years to come, it’s important for you to keep water far, far away from it. Foundation water damage can cause cracking to occur, which can ultimately weaken your foundation and compromise the safety and security of your home. You can protect your home’s foundation by preventing water from coming into contact with it from the outside. You can also take steps to prevent moisture from building up in your basement and affecting your foundation from the inside.
Here are some tips to help you avoid foundation water damage.
Clean and Maintain Your Gutters Regularly
We know what you’re probably thinking: “What in the world do my gutters have to do with my foundation?” But stick with us here.
If your gutters are all clogged up with debris or in desperate need of repair, they won’t be able to take rainwater and send it down your downspouts and away from your home. Water will be left to build up inside of your gutters every time it rains.
When this happens, there is only so much water your gutters can hold. Eventually, the water in your gutters will begin to spill out over the sides and land close to your home.
This will inevitably lead to water pooling around your foundation, and if you don’t do anything about it, moisture could start to seep into your foundation. Over time, this will make your foundation weak and also affect the soil surrounding it.
Clean your gutters at least once or twice every year and make repairs to your gutter system as necessary.
Use Downspouts to Direct Water Away From Your Home
Your gutter system might be working just fine. But if your home’s downspouts aren’t taking water and moving it away from your home, it might all be for nothing.
Your downspouts should be designed to take water from your gutters and move it at least 10 feet away from your foundation. This will prevent the water from finding its way back to your foundation, even when it rains hard for hours on end.
If your downspouts aren’t doing this right now, you should either have them redesigned to move water away from your home more effectively, or purchase downspout extensions that can carry water as far from your home as you want.
Doing either of these things will stop water from building up around your home’s foundation during a rainstorm.
Make Sure the Ground Surrounding Your Foundation Slopes Away From It
Take a look at the ground surrounding your foundation. Does it appear to be sloping in the direction of your home?
If so, this is obviously a recipe for disaster. The ground is going to encourage water to move in the direction of your foundation instead of away from your home.
The ground that sits around your foundation should be sloped at least 6 inches for 10 feet. This will ensure that the ground carries water away from your home rather than towards it.
Prevent the Soil Around Your Home From Drying Out
If you don’t get any rain in your area for a few weeks, you might be under the impression that this is good for those trying to avoid foundation water damage. And to some degree, it is.
But the problems will come when it finally rains again. Since dry conditions can cause the soil around your home to shrink, a sudden rainstorm that floods the soil will cause it to expand very rapidly and apply pressure directly to your foundation.
That pressure can cause lasting damage if this scenario plays out over and over again. It’s recommended that you water the soil around your home during dry times to prevent it from shrinking too much.
Install a Sump Pump in Your Basement
No matter how hard you try to keep water away from your foundation and out of your home, there will likely be times when groundwater will get the best of you.
Groundwater can seep into your basement and sit there if you don’t have a way to deal with it. Consider installing a sump pump in your basement that can collect groundwater in your basement and get rid of it.
A sump pump will prevent groundwater from sitting in your basement and potentially causing foundation water damage.
Remove Water From Your Basement Following a Disaster
A sump pump will take care of most of the groundwater that makes its way into your home. But in the event that your home is affected by a flood, a broken plumbing pipe, or another disaster, your sump pump be overwhelmed with water.
That’s when you should call on professionals for assistance. There are companies that specialize in removing water from a home quickly to prevent it from causing secondary damage.
The key is to act fast and avoid any unnecessary delays when you notice water built up in your basement. The faster you can get the water removed, the better chance you have at minimizing the extent of damage.
Don’t Let Foundation Water Damage Affect Your Home
Maintaining your home’s foundation is not always the most exciting home improvement job. People aren’t going to notice when you’ve taken steps to protect your foundation.
But they will notice if you fail to avoid foundation water damage. A foundation that has been damaged due to exposure to water can weaken and put your entire home at risk.
That’s why you should stop foundation water damage at all costs. It’ll strengthen and secure your home and give you a peace of mind.
Check out our blog for more information on dealing with water damage and other damage your home may experience.