Niles, IL is everything a proper suburb of a large city should be. The village’s population of more than 29,000 enjoys quiet neighborhoods, good schools and easy access to other parts of the Chicago area. Niles has long been a commercial center with thriving shopping districts spread along Golf Road and Milwaukee Avenue.
In the history of its development too, Niles typifies the American suburb. First incorporated in 1899 with 500 residents, the village grew slowly -- prior to World War II, Niles was a small crossroads town with only 800 homes. In the two decades following the war, Niles boomed as it rode the national wave of residential construction that saw 7,000 new homes built of the 12,000 that are there today.
Of course, just as in neighboring suburbs like Morton Grove and Park Ridge, houses from that construction boom are starting to age and create maintenance problems for their owners. Many are now discovering that they need to seal the basements of their Niles homes.
Like any major home repair, the proper way to seal a particular basement will be determined by the condition of the home, type of construction and other specific factors. There are, however, three approaches that cover most situations.
Crack Repair – Poured concrete foundations are the most common type found in Niles as they are in the entire Chicago area. These foundations offer suffer non-structural cracks from foundation movement; these are the most likely source of basement seepage. The best way to seal these cracks is to inject them with expanding polyurethane from the inside of the basement. The polyurethane fills the crack all the way to the exterior soil and forms a permanent seal. It also remains flexible when cured to prevent re-cracking from minor foundation movement.
If the crack is inaccessible from the inside it can be repaired from the exterior by digging a small hole next to the foundation at the site of the crack and filling it with sodium bentonite clay. The clay sets up and forms a pliable “positive side” barrier against water intrusion.
Interior Drain Tile – Another common source of seepage is caused by hydrostatic pressure under the foundation forcing water through the cove joint or cracks in the basement floor. Interior drain tile, perforated pipe embedded in washed gravel underneath the basement floor, relieves this pressure and carries the ground water to a sump pump where it can be ejected outside the home. Properly installed, interior drain tile is maintenance-free.
Exterior Waterproofing – More common sources of a wet basement in Niles are when water enters the basement through a patch of porous concrete or deteriorating masonry or over the top of the foundation. These sources of seepage can be sealed by applying an exterior waterproofing membrane to the foundation walls. The membrane, asphalt-modified polyurethane, is troweled onto the wall in a thick coat and should not be confused with “damp-proofing,” a thin spray coat applied to new construction. When an extraordinary amount of ground water is present, the membrane may be augmented with exterior drain tile and drainage board that channels the water downward.
Regardless of the source of seepage, a Niles homeowner needs the services and expertise of a professional basement waterproofing contractor that knows homes in Niles and how to seal their basements. At U.S. Waterproofing, we have helped hundreds of Niles homeowners keep their basements dry and count them among our more than 300,000 satisfied customers. Why not ask for our free advice?
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