“Can I save money?” “Can I do it myself?”
These are the questions we ask ourselves when we’re confronted with home repairs. We’d like to have professionals take care of everything but we shudder at the anticipated cost.
What if we’ve found signs of moisture, or even water, in our basement? Do we need to call a waterproofing professional or can we handle it ourselves?
Waterproofing paint seems like a good option. We can apply it ourselves to our basement walls and floors and the cost is minimal.
What can we expect from waterproofing paint?
Waterproofing paint can temporarily “damp proof” a basement. This means it can prevent moisture from getting in. It can reduce the humidity of the basement as well as minimize the smell of mold and fungus on the walls since it creates a shell on the surface.
What we can’t expect is for waterproofing paint to actually waterproof a basement. It is still just painted and it is a surface coating with a comparatively weak bond. Over time, moisture will get behind the paint and lift it up. It will bubble, peel, and flake off. That’s why we say it is only a temporary fix for dampness.
What is a better option if moisture is coming through our basement walls?
At CRACK-X, we offer the application of a penetrating, capillary sealer. Concrete is full of pores, or capillaries, that can allow moisture inside the basement. Our sealer penetrates into the pores, reacts with the minerals inside, and forms a crystalline barrier against moisture. It will not blister and peel off like a coating of paint. It includes a ten-year warranty against moisture.
If we are actually getting water in our basement due to strong hydrostatic pressure, the best option is the application of a waterproofing membrane on the inside of our basement walls and floor. The application we offer is a liquid polyurethane coating that penetrates deeply into poured concrete, cement block, and fieldstone foundation walls and bonds permanently.
How is a waterproofing membrane able to do this?
It does so by getting into the pores of the foundation building material and producing solid rubber sealing plugs. These tiny plugs, or sealing tentacles, reach every pore or small crack and are able to hold back and reject water pressure. Elongation memory allows it to keep its original shape and size, whether it’s compressed or relaxed. It is able to withstand not only water pressure but also powerful forces from freeze/thaw cycles, gas pressure, and sudden shock due to its amazing 590% elongation capability.
A waterproofing membrane is also able to strengthen weak concrete and mortar joints, having a tensile strength of 2,600 pounds per square inch. It remains flexible over time, never hardening or becoming brittle, never breaking down. It will never chip, bubble, peel, crack, or delaminate from extreme heat or cold or hydrostatic pressure.
So waterproofing paint can be a temporary fix for dampness. But a penetrating sealer is a better option to keep moisture out. And if water from strong hydrostatic pressure is an issue, a waterproofing membrane is our best option.
Need help? Call us 978-687-4195