Wheaton, IL is known for many things. It’s the county seat of DuPage County, the home and namesake of Wheaton College and, according to some reports, the city with the most churches per capita and one of the highest earning towns in the United States. It’s also a town with a long history, dating back to 1837 when Warren Wheaton first homesteaded the area; he lent his name to the city in 1848.
For Wheaton homeowners, though, the most important historical fact about Wheaton may be the age of its homes. Of the nearly 11,000 homes in Wheaton, nearly two-thirds were built before 1970 and are subject to all of the problems normally associated with older homes, certainly including wet basements.
3 Ways to Repair a Wet Basement in Wheaton
Most foundations in Wheaton are constructed of poured concrete; older homes may have concrete block or other masonry foundations such as brick or stone. Basements there most commonly leak through cracks in poured walls but there are a number of other types of leaks: through cracks in the floor, between foundation walls and footings, through badly fitted windows or pipe intrusions, through cracked mortar joints in masonry walls, through porous concrete block and even over the top of the foundation. The type and location of the leak determines the repair method.
- Crack Repair – The most effective way to repair seeping cracks in poured concrete walls is to inject them with sealant from the interior of the basement. The best sealant for crack repair is expanding polyurethane, which bonds with wet surfaces and expands to completely fill and seal the crack all the way to the outside soil. Also, when cured, the polyurethane remains flexible, preventing the crack from re-opening due to minor foundation movement. If the interior wall is inaccessible, cracks can also be repaired from the outside by filling a small hole dug against the foundation with sodium bentonite clay. The clay draws water from the ground and hardens, forming an impenetrable barrier against leaks.
- Drain Tile – Drain tile is one of the most versatile tools for repairing a wet basement in Wheaton because it prevents leaks from a wide variety of sources. Interior drain tile, for example, is installed around the inside perimeter of the foundation footings, under the basement floor, where it relieves hydrostatic pressure and prevents leaks through floor cracks and the cove joint. Exterior drain tile, around the outside perimeter of the footings, relieves lateral pressure by diverting ground water from the foundation and prevents leaks through wall cracks, mortar joints, window wells, etc.
- Exterior Waterproofing Membrane – An exterior waterproofing membrane is asphalt-modified polyurethane that is applied with a trowel in a thick coat on the outside of a foundation wall. When cured, the membrane seals the wall and prevents seepage; it is particularly effective on concrete block or other masonry walls but very useful on poured concrete as well. The membrane is made even more effective when it is covered with a heavy-duty drainage board that channels water down to exterior drain tile. A waterproofing membrane is NOT the same as “damp-proofing,” which is a thin coat sprayed on the foundation, usually during construction.
No matter what the cause of a wet basement in Wheaton, one thing is true – the homeowner needs the advice and services of a professional basement waterproofing contractor that knows Wheaton homes and how to repair their wet basements. At U.S. Waterproofing, we proudly count many Wheaton residents among the 300,000 satisfied customers we have served since 1957. Why not ask for a free consultation on your wet basement?