Basement Leaks after a heavy rain can be more than just annoying. They can be detrimental to your family’s health. Mold and bacteria can make their way into your home through a leak, that’s why it is important to disinfect the affected areas and repair the basement leaks as soon as possible. Mold creates very hazardous health issues for you and your loved ones.
What Causes Leaks in Your Basement After Heavy Rain?
Heavy rains can reveal or worsen leaks in your basement due to added hydrostatic pressure on the foundation walls and flaws in the waterproofing system. Here are some of the most common causes of basement leaks during heavy precipitation and why you should consider control measures like basement waterproofing, drain repair, and others:
- Cracks Or Holes – Cracks in the concrete walls or floor allow water to seep through the gaps. Holes from previous plumbing or wiring projects can also permit water to leak inside.
- Faulty Drainage – When downspouts, gutters, drain tiles, or the grade around the home are improperly sloped, rainfall cannot drain away from the foundation quickly enough. This forces water toward the basement.
- Saturated Soil – After heavy rains, the soil around the home becomes wholly soaked. This creates outward pressure on basement walls that can push water in through even hairline cracks.
- High Water Table– A seasonal rise in the water table level brings groundwater closer to the basement foundation, where it can leak through flaws and pores in the concrete.
- Window Wells – Improperly sealed window wells collect rain that pours right into window frame gaps and leaks into the basement through the openings.
- Old Waterproofing – Basement waterproofing degrades over time. Eventually, rainwater will permeate through the failing layers into interior walls and floors. Draincom has the best 25 years Worry Free Transferable warranty in the industry. Contact us here for a free inspection and quote.
- Landscaping Against Foundation – Flower beds, shrubs, and mulch placed directly against the foundation retain moisture and prevent proper drainage.
- Damaged Drain Tiles – Cracked, clogged, or shifted exterior drain tiles prevent water from being diverted from the basement walls efficiently.
- Settling– If part of the foundation settles, it can distort or crack the walls and create new entry points for water leaks.
Basement Foundation Cracks And Holes
Basement foundation cracks are one of the top causes of basement leaks after heavy rains. There are a few types of cracks that can form:
- Vertical Cracks– These long cracks run vertically along basement walls. They are often caused by a shifting foundation or immense soil pressure on the walls. Water can seep right through vertical cracks, and you end up with the problem of having water in the basement after rain.
- Horizontal Cracks – Horizontal cracks form across the flat expanse of the floor and allow water to pool on top of the concrete and slowly trickle through.
- Step Cracks – When the foundation settles unevenly, step cracks form where the two pieces are slightly offset. This gap permits water to drip down into the open space.
- Hairline Cracks – While very thin at first, over time, flowing water erodes hairline cracks into larger gaps that permit steady water leakage in the basement after rain.
- In addition to cracks, unsealed holes in the foundation provide direct access for water to enter. Old holes from previous plumbing, wiring, or projects must be sealed up.
Water Leaking Vs. Seeping Into Your Basement: What’s The Difference?
Water leaking into your basement after heavy rain and seeping into a basement after heavy rain involves slightly different behavior:
- Leaking – When water is leaking, it is coming in through a distinct crack or hole in the foundation. Leaks create a concentrated stream or drip of water at the opening. Leaks allow water to enter rapidly.
- Seeping– Water that seeps in and permeates through microscopic pores or cracks in the concrete foundation. Seepage results in a widespread damp spot or area of the wall or floor rather than a definable stream.
- Amount of Water – Leaks involve larger volumes of water compared to seepage. A leak can become a gusher if the opening is large enough, while seepage is a slower moisture spread through pores.
- Speed- The water from a leak begins flowing as soon as pressure is applied by standing water outside. Seepage occurs gradually over hours/days as moisture is wicked up by capillary action into the concrete.
Identifying where the basement leaks versus seeping can help determine the best repair method to stop water entry. Sealing cracks may work for seepage, whereas leaks need patching or drainage improvements.
What Should You Do To Prevent Basement Leaks?
Take your time to consult a professional on how to fix water leaking into the basement after heavy rain. You can contact Draincom by using this form or by calling 905-238-6800 for a free inspection and quote.
Here are some tips to stop basement leaks when it rains:
- Seal all cracks and holes with hydraulic cement. Look for less visible flaws like hairline cracks.
- Improve exterior grading to slope soil and hardscapes away from the foundation at least 3 inches.
- Consider drain repair and Install downspout extensions to move rainwater 10+ feet away from the home into splash blocks.
- Waterproof window wells and ensure covers are sealed tightly to the foundation.
- Check that gutters are clean and not leaking, with proper drainage away from the home.
- Apply an interior French drain along the perimeter to collect seepage and direct it to the sump pump.
- Have full-perimeter interior drain tiles professionally installed to divert groundwater. Choose perforated pipes.
- Upgrade to an exterior foundation waterproofing membrane like EPDM rubberizing or drain sheets.
- Backfill with gravel and add a perforated drainage pipe along the exterior foundation wall.
- Install a dehumidifier to dry excess moisture that makes it inside the basement.
- Use interior sealants on cracks and along floor-wall joints to prevent seepage the rest of the way in.
- Plant rain gardens near downspouts to absorb runoff and use less water-intensive landscaping near the foundation walls.
- Extend downspouts from the home and point the drainage away from the foundation into splash blocks.
- Replace window well covers with tightly sealed edges to prevent rainwater entry.
- Monitor the basement during rains and note any leaks to trace back outside.
Taking preventative action to find and seal all cracks, improve drainage, and install protective measures will help stop basement leaks during heavy rains. Be proactive in waterproofing your basement to avoid extensive damage. Addressing the issue early saves money and headaches down the line. Call us for a free inspection. 905-238-6800