Before you do anything with your basement you must make it water resistant. Neglecting basement waterproofing can result in discomfort when entering the room. It can also damage insulation and rot drywall structures. Since it is rather easy to do even if you are not a professional, it makes sense to take care of this project in your house.
Basement waterproofing cost can greatly depend on the main cause of the problem. There are many different things that can lead to unwanted moisture, and the only sure way to find out which one is the problem is to go through all the possibilities and see if they need to be fixed.
Lack of gutters can aim rain water right down the walls and around the concrete base. Sooner or later water will leak through hairline cracks and concrete pores in your foundation. Both can be easily fixed if you notice that this is the case. First of all, cut the problem at the root and install a gutter in a fashion that it guides rain off the roof at least five feet away from your walls. When it’s done you can continue with the rest of the symptoms and small factors, like cracks.
Wrong sloping of the terrain causes water to run to the walls at ground level instead of flowing away from it. If this is the case make sure you install proper drainage so that the cause of the problem can be fixed. There is no amount of basement waterproofing paint that holds off water if the design is fundamentally wrong.
Water can come up from the ground through pores as well, and all it takes is poorly sealed concrete floors and damp soil to be under it. You can easily test it by taping a small piece of plastic off a plastic bag on the ground and leaving it for a few days. Any water on top is going to be the result of humidity, which can be fixed through ventilation, but any water under the bag will be the result of water coming up from the ground. Paints and other basement waterproofing materials can be implemented to fight this problem and proper drainage also makes it to be less severe. You always want to waterproof the concrete floor first before installing any other kind of basement flooring.
Once you find out the true cause of water getting into the basement, you can start fixing these problems. Get some shoveling done so that rain runs away from the base of your house and install gutters. Find cracks on the wall, floor and ceiling and properly take care of them. If there is a small crack, even a hairline crack, chisel it to about 1/2 deep and fill it with concrete patching materials. Any cracks on the floor are to be treated the same way with the added difference of using real concrete to fill the holes.
Use additional waterproof paint before you do anything else with your walls. There are products that can be mixed with water and painted on the walls and then they penetrate the surface up to a 1/16-1/8″ deep. Repeating the process makes sure that the pores are properly filled and water doesn’t interfere with whatever you had in mind for your basement remodeling project.