Have you ever noticed that certain houses just seem to attract water more than others do? Every time you turn around, the house is having an issue, and it’s usually water-related. Maybe it’s a chronically clogged sink, or a toilet that overflows at the worst possible times (like before party guests come over!). Or maybe there’s a leaky roof, or windows that don’t close properly, so water gets in.
But then, of course, there’s that very special water-related crisis: the wet basement. Now, we’re not talking here about the results of a leaking water heater or some plumbing problem. No, the problem here has to do with water seeping into your cellar from the outside.
Do you want to know how to solve this irritating and potentially costly problem? Here are three things you can do to rectify the situation.
Make Sure The Gutters Are In Perfect Working Order
A gutter system takes rainwater and puts it as far away from the foundation as can be done. Otherwise, the water tends to pool at the foundation, and eventually, it finds its way into your cellar, much to your detriment.
Gutter and downspout maintenance is a two-fold operation. First of all, make sure that your gutters are free of leaves and other debris, and are in good working order. Clogged gutters mean dangerous water flow, and that liquid has to (and will) go somewhere.
Secondly, the downspout should be equipped with an elbow assembly that sends rainwater away from the house’s foundations. Consider, if you will, that you have a gutter system where the water rolls down the roof, along the gutter, then down the downspout, only to pool directly under the spout. That water will seep into the ground below, and will eventually end up in your basement. The elbow is the final necessary piece of this wet puzzle.
Get A Sump Pump
The article “4 Reasons Why a Wet Basement is Often an Easy Fix” recommends this solution for homeowners whose property seems to be perpetually soggy, or at the very least it doesn’t seem to take much water to saturate the ground.
The article notes that sump pumps don’t prevent water from coming into the house, but they do make sure it is removed. The best way to describe this set up is a hole (a sump) in your cellar floor with a pump inside it. When the water in the sump gets to a certain height, the pump kicks in and removes the water, pushing it outside the house, at least, ten feet away from the foundation.
A Crowning Achievement
Funny thing about houses; over time, they settle, and we don’t mean that they lower their expectations. Unfortunately, this phenomenon can give you a leaky basement, because in theory, your house should be situated on a crown of soil that slopes, at least, half a foot over the first ten feet, and that’s in all directions.
Get yourself a clay-loam mix from a DIY or landscaping supply store and build up that crown around the perimeter. This should help water drain away from the house.
There are more solutions out there, of varying complexity and expense. Fortunately, in a lot of cases, the gutter problem is the culprit, and that’s an easy fix. Keep track of how often the issue comes up, and by all means, keep a wet-dry shop vac handy!