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What Causes Basement Floor Leaks and What Can Be Done About Them?

If you have ever walked into your basement and seen strange areas of pooled water, you might wonder just how and why the floor has developed a leak at all? After all, the walls might be entirely free of issues and yet, there it is…a puddle in the middle of the room.

The Cause

Essentially, all basement and foundation leaks seem to be caused by the pressures of water and soil. Experts say that there are three ways that pressures from them can cause problems with the basement floor. They are:

Hydrostatic pressure – This is another way of explaining water pressure and it is usually the result of heavy rains that saturate the soil and allow moisture to actually be pushed through the walls or floor of a foundation.

Lateral pressure – This is another way of describing “sideways” pressure. When the looser soil around the foundation has absorbed too much water, it can flood the area around the home. As the soil expands it creates that sideways pressure and this can lead to problems with the foundation

Clay bowl effect – When the foundation was created, it began as a large hole in the ground and the footings and wells were then built there. The space between the walls and the original soil is refilled and that soil is not as “hard packed” as the original soil. Rainfall can collect in the looser soil, and if you have poor drainage, even more collects and creates a sort of “bowl” or “clay bowl” effect in which the hole dug and then refilled holds a lot more water that cannot escape easily into the hard-packed soil, so goes through or causes cracks to appear in the floor or walls.

What are the solutions to these issues? As you might have already guessed, foundation repairs are often needed at such times. And this is particularly true if the pressures caused cracks to form. These must be sealed and repaired, and it is often done outside of the walls. Replacing and repacking soils is an option, as are the installation of perimeter drainage and improvements of things like gutters and downspout systems to re-channel water away from the building.

Inside of the basement itself, an expert may be able to also install a perimeter drainage system and a lateral channel that also drains into the improved drainage system. A concrete slab can then be restored so that there are no visible gaps or signs of trouble.

Turn to Experts

As you might already know, fixing leaks in a basement is not for the DIY enthusiast. There is engineering, excavation and expert repairs needed. This is the time to call in experienced professionals offering a comprehensive range of foundation repairs and services.

There are many reasons that your home or property can start to experience leaks and even flooding. You cannot ignore them since they can compromise the structure. At The Foundation Experts, you can get a team of professionals in all areas of foundation repair and service, including basement floor leaks.