The Downers Grove IL of today is a large modern suburb in DuPage County west of Chicago. It boasts of a population of more than 49,000 and it is frequently rated highly on many national “best place to live” lists.
Downers Grove has a long history, though, having been founded by a New Englander named Pierce Downer who established a land claim in 1832 near what is now the downtown area. Further settlement, the establishment of farms and businesses and the coming of the railroad spurred the village’s growth.
Its proximity to Chicago and the company’s headquarters led to Downers Grove residents constructing a large number of “Sears houses,” kit homes sold by Sears, Roebuck & Co. in the early 20th century. Even today, the village has one of the largest collections of these kit homes in the country.
Other housing was being built in Downers Grove as well, starting way back in its history; more than 20 per cent of the village’s homes were built before 1940 and half of the nearly 20,000 houses in town today were built before 1970.
With this high percentage of older homes, Downers Grove homeowners are often dealing with the maintenance and repair problems that come with aging houses, including the need for wet basement waterproofing.
Just as in neighboring Naperville and Hinsdale, homes in need of wet basement waterproofing in Downers Grove are diagnosed on a case-by-case basis but there are 3 types of wet basement waterproofing that solve the majority of problems.
1. Crack Repair – The most frequently found source of seepage in a poured concrete foundation is a non-structural crack in the wall and these foundations are commonly found in Downers Grove. These cracks can be permanently repaired from the interior of the basement by injecting them with expanding polyurethane. The polyurethane fills the cracks all the way to the outside soil and remains flexible when cured to prevent re-cracking caused by minor foundation movement.
If the crack can’t be reached from the inside it can be repaired on the exterior with sodium bentonite clay. A small hole is dug down to footings at the site of the crack and filled with the clay, which forms a pliable, permanent barrier against water on the “positive side.”
2. Interior Drain Tile -- Hydrostatic pressure under the foundation can force water into the basement through cracks in the floor and through the cove joint. Installing interior drain tile, perforated pipe buried in a bed of washed gravel under the basement floor, will alleviate the pressure and transport ground water to a sump pump for discharge from the home.
3. Exterior Waterproofing – Ground water can enter a poured concrete foundation over the top of the foundation wall or through patches of porous concrete; masonry walls can seep through bad mortar joints or porous masonry units like concrete block or brick. This seepage can be stopped by installing an exterior waterproofing membrane, a thick coating of asphalt-modified polyurethane that is applied to the exterior of foundation walls with a trowel. The membrane creates a permanent water barrier.
When the ground water is high, the membrane can be augmented with exterior drain tile and heavy-duty drainage board that protects the membrane and channels water downward.
No matter what the chosen repair method, a Downers Grove homeowner in need of wet basement waterproofing will require the advice and assistance of a qualified basement waterproofing contractor that knows Downers Grove and its homes. At U.S. Waterproofing, we have been keeping basements dry all over the Chicago area since 1957; here’s what several of your neighbors had to say about us. Why not ask for our free advice?
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