Kenosha WI is a city of 98,000 that lies on the western shore of Lake Michigan about midway between Milwaukee and Chicago. To some it is an urban center with its own suburbs, to others Kenosha itself is a suburb of Milwaukee and some big thinkers even consider it the farthest northern suburb of Chicago.
Whatever the geopolitical description, Kenosha is a city with two distinct historical eras, the first as an industrial center and the second as a bedroom community.
Kenosha’s industrial history began with its establishment as a Great Lakes shipping port in the early 19th century. Later, in the beginning of the 20th century, Kenosha became a center of automobile manufacturing, ultimately becoming the headquarters of American Motors, which at one time produced such historic marques as Rambler, Nash and Hudson and was owned by Chrysler late in its history.
Along with cars, Kenosha served as home for noted American products like Simmons mattresses and Jockey underwear. Today, the only large industrial company headquartered in Kenosha is Snap-on Tools and former industrial properties have been turned into parks and residential developments.
Today, Kenosha is heavily white collar and its residents enjoy life there in more than 36,000 homes, more than a quarter of which were built before World War II and half are more than 50 years old. With homes of this vintage, many Kenosha homeowners are facing the repair issues that come with older homes and many have found themselves in need of wet basement waterproofing.
Just as in nearby Pleasant Prairie, homes in Kenosha are individually evaluated when wet basement waterproofing is needed but there are several common approaches that work in the majority of situations.
Exterior Waterproofing – Masonry foundations, such as the concrete block common in the Milwaukee area, can seep water through deteriorated mortar joints or porous masonry like block or brick, whereas poured concrete foundations can seep over the top of the wall or through patches of porous concrete. Any of this seepage can be stopped by installing an exterior waterproofing membrane, a thick coating of asphalt-modified polyurethane that is applied to exterior foundation walls with a trowel to form a permanent impervious barrier.
If ground water is especially high, the membrane can be augmented with exterior drain tile and heavy-duty drainage board that protects the membrane and channels water downward.
Crack Repair – The most common source of water in a poured concrete foundation is a non-structural crack in a basement wall. The best method of repairing this crack is to inject it with expanding polyurethane that will fill and seal the crack all the way to the outside soil. Once it cures, the polyurethane remains flexible so that minor foundation damage doesn’t cause the crack to re-open.
If the crack is inaccessible from the inside it can be repaired on the exterior with sodium bentonite clay. A small hole is dug next to the foundation at the site of the crack and filled with the granular clay, which absorbs water from the soil and forms a pliable, permanent water barrier on the outside.
Interior Drain Tile – When hydrostatic pressure is created by ground water under the foundation it can push water into the basement through floor cracks or the cove joint. Installing interior drain tile, a system of perforated pipe buried in washed gravel under the basement floor, will alleviate the pressure and carry the ground water to a sump pump for disposal. When properly installed, interior drain tile never requires maintenance.
No matter what the source of water or the recommended remedy, a Kenosha homeowner in need of wet basement waterproofing will require the advice and services of a basement waterproofing contractor that knows Kenosha and its homes. At U.S. Waterproofing we have been keeping basements dry all over the Chicago area and southeastern Wisconsin since 1957 and we have more than 300,000 satisfied customers backing us up, so why not ask for our free advice?
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