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Got a Leaking Basement? Why this Happens
and What You Can Do About it.

The most common cause of a leaking basement is cracks in the foundation wall.  Other reasons are improper sealing on any of the entrances of pipes / wire / etc that come into your house underground, or pipes themselves that may be leaking into the basement area. 

If you live in an area with high moisture in the soil like Toronto or Mississauga, you are probably at greater risk of leaking basements, as are those who live on flood-plains.  Even if the land around you has never flooded, rising water levels also affect water sources underground which can cause leaks or even flooding in basements.  If you live in one of these high risk areas, and you don't already have one, it might be a good idea to look at having a sump pump installed to help drain water from your basement. 

A leaking basement should be taken care of as soon as it is spotted.  Water can do some serious damage to walls and foundations and the longer it is left, the more damage it will do.  And it's probably only a matter of time before a more serious leak damages any belongings that may be kept in your basement. 

Damp basements, from water leakage, are also a breeding ground for mold, mildew, and various bugs, all of which can cause health problems for your family, as well as damage wood framing and cause structural damage to a house. 

So What Can You Do About a Leaking Basement?  

There are some things that you can do to help minimize your risk of leaks.

  • Make sure that water is draining properly outside your home.

◦ Does the land near your home slant towards the house (bad) or away (good).

◦ Are the eaves unclogged so water can flow to the drains as opposed to over the edge right next to your house.

◦ Is the outside weeping tile taking the water far enough away from your house or only a short distance.

  • Are your basement windows fully sealed?  Perhaps having new widows installed (by a professional) could not only reduce the chance of leaks but also make your house more energy efficient.
  • If your basement is simply damp and you are worried about mold and mildew, put a dehumidifier down there to help take moisture from the air. 

If you have a small leak in your basement, you could patch it yourself, but this is not recommended.  Any patch on an inner wall is only that, a patch, and is not solving the problem, since water will still be eating away at the outer wall. 

You could try and do some digging outside to fix the foundation crack that is leaking, but if you don't know what you are doing you might further damage the wall or underground pipes and wires.  You also have a greater chance of hurting yourself in the process of any complicated do-it-yourself project. 

If you have a leak already, the best thing you can do is to call a professional.  You want to look for someone with experience and knowledge of waterproofing.  This is a process which happens on the outside of the house and involves a complex process of repairing damaged cement / bricks / etc.  Then applying several layers of materials against the wall to guarantee it will not leak again.  It also involves properly preparing the land around the house (underground) so as to minimize water coming in contact with the wall. 

Taking care of the foundation of your house is like taking care of the bones in your body.  It has to be done right and by a professional.  When a bone is broken, you go to the doctor.  When your foundation is damaged, call a plumber, or other professional to take care of it. 

Downtown Areas servicing:  East York, Allen Road, Eglinton, North York, Lawrance area, Yonge Street, Toronto. Also: Oakville, Mississauga, North York, Toronto, Etobicoke and the GTA.


Draincom has expert waterproofing contractors who specialize in foundation repair of leaking basements - email us right away for a free estimate, or call us for 24-7 hotline: 416-989-5757.