A. Some waterproofing contractors from the 1970's and 1980's repaired wall cracks by chiseling the crack deep into the wall, then creating a large hole at the bottom for the water to drain out. This method did not (stop the water), but rather diverted it. Over time, the sealants used to cover up the large cavity would deteriorate and begin to leak through the surface. It can be repaired by high pressure injection of SP-3 water activated polyurethane. First, we will have to strengthen the cavity prior to injection. Below is an example of a chiseled out wall crack with a drain hole. Repaired 10/02/2012
Extensive wall damage on an old repair method of chiseling wall crack
A. Some waterproofing contractors repair a wall crack by draining it into the floor instead of (stopping the water). when they do this, they dig up a section of the floor under the crack, install a plastic panel over the crack allowing it to drain into the floor cavity. To finish, they will cement the opening to a flush level and to also hold the panel in place. Small plastic rivets hold the rest of the panel. Over time, this will leak through. Below is an example of a panel removal exposing the mold growth. This was repaired properly by removing the panel and stopping the water with high pressure injection of SP-3 water activated polyurethane.
What is behind the traditional panel drain repair method
A. Tree root destruction is seen more often than any other condition. Trees planted years ago that have matured may have the root system touching your basement wall. While some may disagree, a root hitting the foundation wall (will) cause it to eventually crack and move inward. Removal of the root will solve the problem of pressure against the wall. Some landscapers can dig down and find the root that is causing the crack and remove it. You can then inject the crack to permanently stop the water entry. Not removing the tree roots will only cause further damage and failure in the waterproofing effort. Below are photos showing destruction of brick facia as well as resulting wall cracks.
Photo below shows (close-up) of brick damage caused by tree roots.
Photo below shows inside result of tree root pressure. Wall cracks.
A. In the waterproofing industry you will hear the term "Drain Tile". Tiles were used many years ago and newer homes do not have "tiles", but rather drain lines made of pvc. Older tile systems were actually "orangeberg" tiles laid end to end.
When drain lines fail it is very obvious as the leaks are everywhere as well as iron deposits. This type of failure is much different than a wall leak and requires a different application as it is drainage failure under the basement floor. Many companies in southeast Michigan specialize in interior and exterior installation for this problem.
This photograph shows clearly what drain line failure looks like. Iron deposits and water entry everywhere. It is important to know when determining a solution to this problem you must first determine which drain system you have in your home. (1) Storm Drain clean-out which goes to the residential drain lines in the street or a (2) Sump Pump system.
IF YOU HAVE A SUMP PUMP
Check the sump pump for proper operation. Many times the float valve will stick due to iron deposits. Failure of the sump pump will cause this condition. Correcting the sump pump operation should be referred to a qualified plumber.
IF YOU HAVE STORM DRAIN TO THE STREET
Have a plumber check if the storm drain line is open and not blocked. Many times the line to the street is blocked and simply needs to be snaked clean. If this is the case in either of the above, your problem may be fixed by a plumber instead of installing new drain tiles, (lines).
If both of these steps fail, then it is likely that you will need drain line replacement. We encourage home owners to get several opinions and quotes in order to make a good decision in your choice of contractors.
A. If your foundation is constructed with block walls, then injection would not be recommended. In our opinion, block foundations can be repaired either from the inside or outside by installation of a new drain line system. These are installed and drained to your sump pump system, or the storm drain established when the home was built. Other systems that may be necessary in block foundations are the applications of Slab Pier systems, Push Pier systems, Helix piers or (Ram Jack) horizontal stabilizers due to wall shift.
There are many good block foundation contractors in Michigan that can be found on Google.com.
A. Digging a basement on the outside can be expensive and upset the landscaping around your house. Sealing the leak at the source is the best method of repair. Instead of digging, why not use a process that pushes the sealant all the way to the outside where the water is entering. Our process will travel to the outside shutting off water where it is important, the source.
Here are example photos after an injection showing the polyurethane traveling through the wall crack to the outside (reverse) of the injection. This shows the sealant in the walls to the source without expensive excavation methods.