Basement Water Damage: A Costly Home Repair

February 11, 2009

Basement Water Damage: A Costly Home Repair(NewsUSA) - Seepage, failing pipes and condensation are the most common causes of costly moisture and water damage to concrete and masonry surfaces in basements.

A recent study from a leading home insurance provider found that the typical water damage repair costs homeowners approximately $5,000. Before water-related problems escalate, first identify potential and existing sources of water damage, and make the necessary repairs both inside and outside your home.

These simple steps can help in this task and will save you time, frustration and money:

  1. If water is seeping through small cracks in basement walls, begin by clearing any loose debris from around the crack with a chisel. The active leak can then be plugged within 3 to 5 minutes with a product like Quikrete Hydraulic Water-Stop Cement. Cement-based materials, however, should only be applied over non-painted concrete or masonry surfaces.
  2. With the problem addressed at its source, check for openings around windows, control joints and pipes in basement walls. Create a waterproof seal around the openings using a polyurethane non-sag sealant.
  3. Along with sealing around pipes, it’s important to note that freeze/thaw temperature cycles can cause pipes to crack and separate, resulting in basement flooding. Insulate around pipes to prevent these types of failures from occurring.
  4. Finally, check the grade of the soil around your home’s foundation to ensure proper drainage, and have a well-maintained gutter system to deal with rain runoff. Clothes dryers in basements should be correctly vented to reduce condensation. A dehumidifier may also be needed.

With regular checks and diligent maintenance, homeowners can easily avoid water damage issues in basements and prevent the need for big-ticket repairs.

This information was taken from “Guide to Concrete, Masonry & Stucco Projects,” a new book from The Quikrete Companies. The book, the first in a series of Quikrete books written in cooperation with Creative Publishing Int., educates the public about proper applications, techniques and building practices.

The book is available for purchase at home improvement centers, hardware retailers, national bookstore chains and online. For more information, visit

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