The village of Kenilworth, although the smallest of the communities that make up Chicago’s North Shore, makes its presence felt in other ways. Forbes magazine called Kenilworth “the most exclusive neighborhood in the Midwest,” and it ranks high nationally for the affluence of its residents and the value of its homes.
The only completely planned community on the North Shore, Kenilworth offers its 2500 residents gracious homes on large lots, an excellent public school and lots of amenities. There are only 800 houses in Kenilworth, spread across less than two-thirds of a square mile, with an average value of $1 million. Nearly two-thirds of the homes in town were constructed before 1940 and, combined with a modest postwar surge in construction, account for more than 80% of today’s total.
Even among the grand homes of a place like Kenilworth, age takes its toll and local homeowners often find themselves in need of wet basement waterproofing.
Although a comprehensive inspection and diagnosis will determine what is needed to repair a basement water problem in a specific home, there are three commonly used methods of wet basement waterproofing in Kenilworth.
Crack Repair – One of the most common ways that water enters a basement is through a non-structural crack in a poured concrete foundation wall, a type of foundation typically found in Kenilworth. The best way to permanently repair such a crack is to inject it with expanding polyurethane, which fills and seals the crack all the way to the outside soil. The urethane material remains flexible when cured to prevent any minor foundation movement from causing the crack to re-open.
In a finished basement, or if the crack is otherwise inaccessible on the interior, the repair can be made from the outside by digging a small hole next to the foundation at the site of the crack. The hole is then filled with sodium bentonite clay that sets up to form a permanent, pliable barrier against further water intrusion.
Interior Drain Tile – Another common way that water enters a basement in Kenilworth is through cracks in the basement floor or through the cove joint; this is caused by hydrostatic pressure under the foundation. The best way to permanently relieve this pressure is to install interior drain tile, a system of perforated pipe embedded in washed gravel that sits level with the foundation footings underneath the basement floor. The drain tile carries off ground water to a sump pump to be discharged from the home. Once installed, interior drain tile requires no maintenance.
Exterior Waterproofing – Water can also enter a basement through porous concrete or masonry walls, deteriorating mortar joints or over the top of the foundation wall. This type of seepage is best addressed by applying an exterior waterproofing membrane to the outside of the foundation. Made of asphalt-modified polyurethane, the membrane is troweled onto the wall in a thick coat; it is not to be confused with the thin spray called “damp-proofing.” The membrane cures to form a permanent, impermeable barrier against further seepage.
In extreme cases, the membrane can be augmented by exterior drain tile and covered by drainage board to channel water downward.
No matter the cause of seepage, the Kenilworth homeowner in need of wet basement waterproofing requires the services and skills of a professional basement waterproofing contractor who knows the area. At U.S. Waterproofing, we have repaired wet basements for many Kenilworth homeowners and count them among our more than 300,000 satisfied customers. Why not ask for our free advice?
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