The 1970’s was a big decade for Wheaton, IL. Already firmly established as the county seat of DuPage County and as a regional center for shopping, education and business, Wheaton saw its population grow by 50% and the number of houses in the city nearly double from 1970 to 1980. Since then, the population has grown to nearly 53,000 residents, most of whom live in one of the nearly 20,000 homes in Wheaton today.
The growth in residential real estate has slowed in Wheaton since 2000 and today’s housing mix is diverse, with large modern family homes and historic residences dating back to the late 19th Century. Vintage commercial and public buildings in the downtown area and at Wheaton College add to the ambience of a historic small city.
Given the average age of local houses, though, it is not uncommon for homeowners to encounter maintenance issues that come with age and many find themselves needing to seal a basement in Wheaton.
3 Ways to Seal a Basement in Wheaton
Although sealing a specific basement in Wheaton or anywhere requires an inspection and recommendation from a basement waterproofing professional, there are three common ways to do it.
Crack Repair – Most foundations in the Chicago area are constructed of poured concrete, which can be prone to non-structural cracks caused by settling or lateral pressure from over-saturated soil that surrounds the foundation. The best way to repair such a crack is to inject it with expanding polyurethane from the inside of the basement. The polyurethane material expands to fill and seal the crack completely, reaching the outside soil. It remains flexible once cured to prevent minor foundation movement from causing the crack to re-open.
If the crack is in a finished basement or otherwise inaccessible, it can be repaired from 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 forms a permanent, flexible barrier against water infiltration.
Interior Drain Tile – One of the most versatile ways to seal a basement, interior drain tile relieves the hydrostatic pressure under the foundation that causes the basement to leak through the cove joint or via cracks in the floor. Constructed of perforated plastic pipe, an interior drain tile system is buried in a bed of washed stone below the basement floor along the inside perimeter. It carries ground water to a sump pump where it is discharged from the house; interior drain tile requires no maintenance once installed.
Exterior Waterproofing – One common way to prevent seepage over the top of a foundation wall or through porous concrete or masonry is to apply an exterior waterproofing membrane. Consisting of asphalt-modified polyurethane, the membrane is a thick coating that is applied to the exterior of the foundation with a trowel, creating a permanent seal against water. Waterproofing membrane should not be confused with “damp-proofing,” a thin coating sprayed on during construction.
In situations where there is an extreme amount of ground water present, the membrane can be augmented with exterior drain tile and covered with drainage board to channel the water downward.
Regardless of how it is to be done, when a homeowner needs to seal his or her basement in Wheaton, the service and expertise of a professional basement waterproofing contractor are required. At U.S. Waterproofing, we’ve helped hundreds of Wheaton homeowners seal their basements against water and we count them among the 300,000 Chicago-area homeowners we’ve served since our founding in 1957. Why not ask for our free advice?