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Crew installing interior drainage in the basement.

Basement Waterproofing: Inside or Outside?

How do you know what is the best fit for waterproofing your basement?

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crew installing interior drainage

Whether you use your basement for storage, extra living space, or nothing at all, it can be alarming to find leaking or flooding water in this area of your home. That’s why it is important to repair and protect your home with basement waterproofing solutions. 

But with everything on the market for waterproofing basements, how do you know what is the best fit? In this article, we’ll discuss a great debate in home repair, whether it is better to waterproof a basement from the inside or outside. We’ll also cover quick fixes to avoid and how our professional team at Indiana Foundation Service can help. 

Exterior Waterproofing Is Not Always Effective 

clogged exterior pipe

When homes are built and basements are being constructed, it’s typical for exterior waterproofing measures to be put into place to help prevent water from the surrounding soil from seeping inside. This common building practice usually involves applying a tar coating to the walls’ exterior, as well as placing drainage pipe surrounded by rock and gravel next to the footer. 

As long as these systems are not damaged, they go a long way in helping keep your basement dry. However, they can fail over time. And with the older homes around Indianapolis, this is a distinct possibility. The tar coating can wear away and the buried drainage pipe can easily clog with roots or debris or be crushed by the above soil. While repairing these systems is possible, it can be expensive, invasive, and time-consuming. They also may fall victim to the same fate again in the future. Telltale signs that these exterior measures no longer work include leaking walls and water seeping through the cove joint where the wall and floor meet. 

Other Exterior Considerations 

While exterior solutions may not always work, there are other exterior systems you need to consider. Your home’s gutters and downspouts are the first lines of defense in keeping excess water like rainfall and snowmelt away from your basement. It can be a daunting task, but it’s a good idea to inspect and clean your gutters at least twice a year, in the spring and fall. Keeping your gutters and downspouts free of clogs, debris, and damage like holes is crucial in water management. Downspouts, as well as the landscape around your home, should be angled down and away from your home for effective drainage. 

Interior Basement Waterproofing Is the Answer 

While some exterior systems have their place, ultimately, it is better to waterproof a basement from the inside. Interior water management systems don’t have to contend with the elements, so they have a longer lifespan in protecting your home. However, there are certain systems designed for long-term waterproofing, and other temporary fixes that we do not recommend. 

Interior Repairs to Avoid 

You have probably seen the ads and videos for materials available online and in big box stores that are marketed as waterproof. But items like “waterproof” paints, sealants, epoxy injections, and the like, that are intended for DIY use are not long-lasting. They are temporary bandages that cover up the cosmetic damage, do not address the root of the problem, and will eventually fail and allow the water intrusion to continue. That means you would have to keep purchasing these items and apply them over and over with no guarantee that your basement will stay dry. 

Plus, basement waterproofing is not something you can DIY in a weekend. The best thing you can do for your wet basement is to invest in interior waterproofing solutions installed by an experienced professional. That’s where our team at Indiana Foundation Service comes in. 

Basement Waterproofing - after

Professional Interior Basement Waterproofing Solutions 

Your home is unique, and so are your basement waterproofing needs. Our team understands that, as well as the challenges Central and Southern Indiana homeowners face. We care about you and your home’s safety, which is why we offer free inspections so we can get to the bottom of your basement problems and suggest solutions tailored to your specific repair needs. Here are some of the interior basement waterproofing solutions our team might recommend: 

  • Wall Vapor Barrier 

Attached to your basement walls, a vapor barrier helps prevent moisture and water intrusion. Should any water leak through the walls, it will run behind the water and mold-resistant vapor barrier and down to the interior drainage system in the floor. 

  • Interior Drainage System 

Especially if exterior footing drains have failed, water commonly leaks inside the cove joint at the wall and floor. Our interior drainage system attacks this water from all sides. Placed just underneath the basement floor and atop the footing, our specially designed perforated pipe collects seeping water and drains it into a sump pump system. 

  • Sump Pump System 

Placed inside a covered basin in the floor, our variety of sump pump systems collect water from the perimeter interior drainage system. This water is then pumped out of the basement and away from the home through discharge pipes. We also offer a battery backup system that will keep your home dry and protected during power outages. 

  • Energy-Efficient Dehumidifier 

To prevent excessive moisture and humidity that can lead to mold growth and other problems, we recommend installing a dehumidifier. Our powerful, but energy-efficient units are self-draining, so you don’t have to worry about emptying any buckets, and they keep your basement and home’s humidity at safe and healthy levels. 

Protect Your Home with Help from Indiana Foundation Service 

If you still feel torn about the best way to waterproof your basement, don’t worry. Our professionals take the guesswork out of the process with their thorough inspections, diagnoses, and recommendations. Get started with permanently waterproofing, repairing, and protecting your basement today. Just give us a call or fill out the accompanying contact form. We look forward to helping you create a safe, dry, and healthy living environment! 

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