Why your basement leaks in the winter

Why your basement leaks in the winter

Why your basement leaks in the winter

Basements can leak any time of the year when a concentrated amount of moisture seeps into the ground. But for many homeowners, snowfall is the main source of frustration.

We’re addressing winter basement leaks, in hopes that you won’t have to.

How does the snow get inside?
According to Waterproof.com, a Minnesota waterproofing super store, heat radiates out from your basement causing hydrostatic pressure. This downward pull of gravity, built up around your basement foundation, is what forces the water into your home.

The once-frozen soil around the basement melts, creating a pocket of moisture. The water then becomes trapped between the remaining frozen soil and the basement walls during the winter time. When too much pressure is built up, water usually seeps in through a crack in the wall or a cove joint – where the floor meets the wall .

Eaves troughs and downspouts can also accumulate gallons of water every snowfall, writes Ontario-based Best Drainage. If they aren’t positioned far enough away from your house, they can easily cause foundation problems.

Your window well not allowing proper drainage can also result in a wet basement.

Stopping it before it starts
Start with the downspout: Make sure the funnel of the downspout is a minimum of 4 feet away from the base of your home. Altering the grade of the foundation to ensure that the water is traveling away from your home is also recommended by Best Drainage. On warmer days, be sure to pay attention to how water flows from the roof to the ground.

Certain types of soil can also prevent draining, writes U.S. Waterproofing. Clay soil, for instance, absorbs water and expands.

Soil surrounding the foundation perimeter should slope down 6 inches in the opposite direction of your home, according to Money Pit. This should be over the first 4 feet of the foundation wall.

If your soil is counterproductive to your basement needs, it’s suggested that you substitute it for clean fill dirt. After angling appropriately, you should finish with a layer of stone, mulch or topsoil to prevent erosion.

Using landscaping as a tool to prevent water damage can be helpful, too. What’s excellent for your flowers, may not be best for guarding against leaks. Exposed soil in flower beds can trap moisture, creating water pools near your home’s walls, Money Pit writes.

Most basements show some sign of leaking or cracking. For all of your water leak needs, contact American Leak Detection at (866) 570 – LEAK.