Your basement is a very important and often underappreciated part of your home. It is a large space which can be converted into an additional living area or it can simply be a good place to get away and enjoy a little peace.
Basements traditionally house the furnace and will usually have exposed walls. Many households have their washing machines and a selection of tools in them. This means they are always easy to get to but kept out of sight.
The basement can help you to understand the current condition of your home and whether you should be taking action to work on anything. For example, cracks in walls in the basement can suggest a subsidence issue. If you see them you should have them repaired; but you may want to check the walls of your home as well. The basement is the founding block of your home; if it breaks your whole house will!
One of the biggest issues faced by all basements is water and moisture. By their nature, a basement is often below ground level. This means that you need proper basement waterproofing. Any water that gets into your basement can cause damp and mold. But, of even more concern is the water that gets into your basement will start to damage your walls and can climb upwards into your living space.
Potential damage to your home and the health issues which have been connected to mold spores and damp living conditions should be enough to convince you that basement waterproofing is not just a good idea; it is essential.
There are several elements to deal with in your basement:
You will need to remove any paint or sealer which is already on your floor. Ideally you will need to get back to your original concrete floor to ensure the basement waterproofing process is effective. There are a variety of compounds which can help you to remove all traces of dirt, dust and old paint. Once you have broken it all up you will need to vacuum the floor to ensure it is all gone.
You can then apply a basement waterproofing product. This is a waterproof product that can be purchased in any good DIY store and applied with a stiff brush. It is important to be generous with your coats.
This product should be left to dry for at least two days. If necessary split the basement and complete the basement waterproofing in two stages.
The same process can be applied to any exposed walls you have. This will prevent the damp from coming inwards into the house although it could still rise within the wall. The right basement waterproofing product will strengthen any crumbling mortar; you do not need to repoint your brickwork.
There are products you can apply to any visible parts outside your basement. However, these are generally ineffective and not necessarily if you have applied the basement waterproofing properly inside.
It is worth checking your basement for moisture regularly. A moisture reader will allow you to do this in moments and can give you an early warning of any issues.