Canadian Contractor


Interior and Exterior Basement Waterproofing During New Construction

Canadian Contractor Basement Resources
Sponsored by Direct Waterproofing

The best time to ensure a house never gets excess moisture issues is during construction before covering the foundation with soil. That is when the exterior waterproofing process is most straightforward; the perfect time to apply a rubberized membrane, install drainage pipes or put in a dimpled drainage membrane. Construction contractors can work with waterproofing experts to cater to such services. Direct Waterproofing has worked with custom home builders on many new construction projects across Ontario and can step in to sort out all the waterproofing needs.

Damp Proofing vs. Basement Waterproofing

The essence of foundation waterproofing is always evident in the basement condition after house construction – it shows the quality of your craftsmanship as the builder. A good foundation should support and protect the house by channelling water away. That is why dealing with interior or exterior basement waterproofing during the early stages is critical and why building codes for domestic properties mandate minimal foundation preparation through damp proofing.

Damp-proofing only prevents moisture seepage from the soil to the foundation – it does not protect against rainwater. The process involves the application of a moisture-resistant coating on the outside foundation above and below grade. Damp-proofing is vital in basements because of the location, and you must use a lot of protective material for effectiveness.

Waterproofing protects a house from hydrostatic pressure that can cause mould growth, staining on the ceiling, wall discoloration, or cracks on the basement floor. Flooring material like concrete remains vulnerable to damage by hydrostatic pressure and soil moisture unless you put protective measures in place. No matter how good your expertise as a builder is, the basement cannot maintain its stellar condition without waterproofing measures.

Exterior Waterproofing Process

Waterproofing membrane

You start by applying a rubberized membrane on the exterior foundation wall. Remember to use that with damp-proofing solutions and not on its own; otherwise, it becomes less effective. You can also attach a fabric mesh to the rubber membrane before applying another coat over the mesh. That provides multilayered protection that works in areas prone to water damage.

Insulation board installation

The next step is to install a foam insulation board over the membrane as a protective layer. Dimpled or channelled drainage boards can be better options. Use existing fasteners instead of punching new ones through the membrane for the best results.

French drain

A French drain is a perforated pipe that runs along the foundation perimeter. The drainage redirects water to the sump pump for further channelling away from the basement. Ensure you wrap the pipes to prevent clogging by soil and other debris.

Other exterior waterproofing processes you can try include installing gutter systems to redirect rainwater away from the foundation, ensuring the drainage ditch remains clear and ascertaining that the slope around the foundation inclines away from the house structure.

Interior Waterproofing

French drains work hand in hand with interior drain systems as the ultimate protection against excess moisture in basements, especially if there is a bathroom. Installing them before completing a new construction is effortless and cost-efficient. The interior waterproofing systems also need a sump pump to prevent water saturation from causing extensive damage.

Proper installation of the sump pump and its subsequent maintenance is critical for water seepage prevention. Poor placements can result in inadequate water in the drain, rendering the unit ineffective. Other problems likely to arise from unprofessional installation include clogging and low-level performance. You can place another sump pump as backup, especially if the location is prone to excess water infiltrating the foundation walls from the outside.

Choosing the right sump pump size is essential in ensuring the unit you put in copes with the amount of water reaching the basement. Basements with bathrooms are likely to have more water flowing through, meaning the pump must be capable of clearing away the existing water volume. Check the quality and horsepower before installation. Most powerful sump pumps also have the advantage of silent operations. Ensure you place it as close to the foundation as possible. Seeking the services of an expert like Easy Bathroom can be beneficial. The company has a vast knowledge of waterproofing materials for basement bathrooms. They are always ready to work on new constructions with custom home builders in Ontario and the surrounding regions.

Importance Interior Waterproofing

Excess moisture issues are rampant in basements because of their location, but the issues worsen when the basement has a bathroom. Poorly installed waterproofing features cannot prevent those issues, thus the importance of builders working with waterproofing masters. When done correctly, the waterproofing measures can erase the following problems.

Wall damage

Bubbling and softening are some signs of wall damage – they indicate prolonged exposure of the wall structure to high moisture content. As the problem progresses, the drywall begins to warp and finally breaks into pieces.

Sometimes water issues in bathroom walls display as stains or blisters if there is wallpaper or paint. That can be accompanied by softening floorboards, which happens when moisture causes the flooring material to expand quickly. Steam from the shower does not cause peeling or warping. The real issue occurs when excess vapour gets between the walls, interfering with the adhesiveness of the structures. The paint falls off, and the wallpaper loosens.

Compromised flooring

Possible reasons for stains on floors are spills and overflowing bathtubs. The bathroom could have a hidden leak if you notice stains that did not come from human error, such as an accidental spillage or the bathtub running for long and causing flooding. The same applies to unexplainable buckling or cracking, especially if plumbing pipes are underneath the floor.

Other telltale signs include sponginess, softening floorboards, or easily detachable tiles.

Unstable toilet

A wobbling or rocking toilet has a dysfunctional seal between the base and the pipe. The instability usually comes with a stench or sewer water seeping into the surrounding floor.

Consulting or hiring a waterproofing specialist before completing a construction project is a pre-emptive move that can save you a lot of money and cement your reputation as the best builder in the region. The cost of handling such projects before completing construction is also significantly lower than the amount it would take to complete repairs once problems start to manifest


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