Schererville, IN calls itself the “Crossroads of the Nation” and with good reason. In its earliest days, long before settlement as a town, what is now called Schererville was known as “Crossroads” for the major Native American trails that intersected there. These trails later became routes for wagon trains as they carried settlers to the West.
Today, Schererville, along with being a thriving town of nearly 30,000 residents, is a modern crossroads with interstate highways taking the place of trails and cars, semis and buses replacing Conestoga wagons. For those who live in Schererville instead of just passing through, home is likely one of nearly 7000 houses and condos and, like homeowners all over northwest Indiana, homeowners in Schererville often face basement water problems and want to know how to seal their basements against seepage.
3 Ways to Seal a Basement in Schererville
Although the ultimate solution to a basement water problem is going to be determined on a house-by-house basis, there are three cost-effective approaches to permanently sealing a basement that are commonly used in Schererville.
Exterior Waterproofing Membrane – An exterior waterproofing membrane is a thick coating of asphalt-modified polyurethane that is applied to the outside of a foundation wall with a trowel. Once the application cures, it provides a complete “positive side” seal against further intrusion of water.
To make the exterior waterproofing membrane even more effective, it can be covered with heavy-duty plastic drainage board that will protect the membrane and channel water down to exterior drain tile. Although the membrane approach protects all types of foundations, it is particularly effective on masonry foundations because it seals mortar joints and porous concrete block. Concrete block foundations are commonly found in Schererville and throughout northwest Indiana so an exterior waterproofing membrane is the answer for many local homeowners.
Drain Tile – Drain tile is a sub-surface drainage system that consists of perforated pipe installed in a bed of washed stone alongside the foundation footings of the house and connected to a sump pump. Interior drain tile, which is installed along the inside perimeter of the foundation, alleviates hydrostatic pressure and drains off water that would otherwise enter the basement through the cove joint or through cracks in basement floors. Exterior drain tile on the outside perimeter of the footings helps to relieve lateral pressure against the foundation and carries away water that would come into the basement through wall cracks, deteriorated mortar joints, basement windows and utility openings.
As good as drain tile is in helping to seal a basement, it is not a one-size-fits-all remedy. Schererville homeowners should be wary when it is the only solution offered, particularly if it’s recommended without a thorough inspection and consultation.
Crack Repair – For homes that sit on a poured concrete foundation, the most common source of basement water problems is a crack (or cracks) in a foundation wall. These cracks are caused by foundation movement or lateral pressure from saturated soil but they can be permanently repaired with a minimum of inconvenience. The best way to repair a wall crack is to inject it from the interior with expanding polyurethane. This method fills and seals the crack all the way to the outside soil and the urethane remains flexible when it cures to prevent the crack from re-opening due to minor foundation movement.
If the crack is inaccessible from inside, it can also be permanently repaired from the exterior by filling a small excavation at the site of the crack with sodium bentonite clay. The sodium bentonite absorbs water from the ground and hardens to form an impenetrable barrier, sealing the basement against water intrusion.
Whatever the cause of the problem, every Schererville homeowner (or those in Merrillville or Dyer, for that matter) who needs to seal his or her basement will only get the right solution from a basement waterproofing contractor that knows the territory and offers a full range of repair methods and materials. At U.S. Waterproofing, we have been serving homeowners in Schererville and elsewhere in northwest Indiana for decades and we make sure we thoroughly investigate and diagnose the problem and offer exactly the right permanent repair to seal your basement. So, why not ask for our free advice?