The county fair is part of the landscape in the summer months, especially in more rural counties where agriculture is still a mainstay. Particularly in the Midwest, farmers and other residents gather for the annual event that often includes livestock shows, amusements and racing of cars, horses or both.
Noticeably absent from the list of county fairs in Illinois is the state’s largest county, Cook, home of Chicago and its close-in suburbs to the north and west. It wasn’t always this way, though. The Cook County Fair grew out of various expositions and shows in and around the county until finding a permanent home in Palatine in 1917. The fairgrounds were established around a race track located on a farm that bred harness horses and the fair thrived there until 1931 when the growing urbanization of the area brought about its demise.
Today, the only trace of this piece of Palatine’s history is a subdivision on the site of the old fairgrounds, appropriately named Fairgrounds Park. Homeowners there, whose homes date back to 1953, as well as those in other parts of Palatine, are facing the typical maintenance problems that come with older homes, including the need to seal their basements against seepage.
A recommended repair will be specific to the needs of the Palatine home, as it would be in nearby Arlington Heights and Mount Prospect, but there are three commonly used methods to seal basements there.
Crack Repair – The most common type of foundation in Palatine is poured concrete and the most common source of seepage in such a foundation is a non-structural crack in the foundation wall. The best way to repair such a crack permanently is to inject it with expanding polyurethane from the interior, which will fill and seal the crack completely. The polyurethane material will remain flexible when cured to prevent the crack from being re-opened by minor foundation movement.
When a crack is inaccessible on the interior it can be repaired on the outside by digging a small hole along the foundation at the site of the crack. The hole is filled with sodium bentonite clay that sets up to form a pliable barrier against water on the outside of the wall.
Interior Drain Tile – A common source of seepage in any Palatine basement is water that is forced through the cove joint or cracks in the basement floor by hydrostatic pressure below the foundation. An interior drain tile system, perforated pipe buried in a bed of washed gravel under the basement floor, will alleviate this pressure and carry the water to a sump pump where it can be discharged from the home. Properly installed, interior drain tile requires no maintenance.
Exterior Waterproofing – Water can also enter a Palatine basement through porous spots in poured concrete or concrete block, cracked or deteriorating mortar joints in masonry walls and over the top of the foundation. This seepage can be stopped (or prevented) by applying an exterior waterproofing membrane to the foundation wall. Consisting of a thick coat of asphalt-modified polyurethane applied with a trowel, the membrane seals the wall permanently against seepage.
When there is an extreme amount of ground water present, the membrane can be augmented with exterior drain tile and drainage board to channel water downward.
Regardless of the right type of repair, a Palatine homeowner in need of sealing his or her basement will require the services of a basement waterproofing contractor that knows the area and its homes. At U.S. Waterproofing, we have helped hundreds of Palatine homeowners seal their basements and count them proudly among our more than 300,000 satisfied customers. Why not ask for our free advice?
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