Waterproofing Your Home

Practical Home Maintenance

BY JASON STEVENS

December 4, 2020

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Spring brings sunshine, flowers, and warmer temperatures. However, it also brings rain. Too much rain may flood your yard and cause damage to your home.

A little preventive maintenance and some DIY waterproofing can help keep your home ready for safe during those spring showers and summer storms.

Protect your home from flooding

Did you know that flooding is the most common disaster that impacts the most people year after year? Aside from rain, other causes of flooding in the home include pipe breaks and leaks, and when your house floods, you’ll find yourself with a costly repair bill.

Brinks Home™ offers flood sensors designed to discover water leaks in your home or business. These sensors give you the time to salvage your valuables and shut off the water. The basement or first level of your business or home is the best place for a flood sensor. Mount a detector on the lowermost area of your wall or right on the floor to detect water. A home security system with a flood sensor is also a great way to help ensure a vacation or vacant home remains safe and secure.

Rain gutter repairs

No one likes to clean or repair gutters. There are, however, ways to make the job much easier.

  • Use barbecue tongs to reach in and pull the leaves out of clogged downspouts.

  • Flush out any remaining clogged leaves.

  • Replace any loose gutter nails with extra-long lag screws. Lag screws are stronger, hold better, and you can easily install them with a cordless drill equipped with a nut driver bit.

Windows and doors

Wooden windows and doors may swell and stick during wet weather conditions. To repair a sticky door or window:

  1. Mark where it is sticking.

  2. Remove the door or window by taking out its hinge pins, and prop it up securely.

  3. Carefully remove any excess material using a hand plane or power plane. Just make sure that if you use a power plane, you don’t remove too much wood. Otherwise, the gap between the door frame and door will be too wide when the wood shrinks back during the drier, warmer days of summer.

Waterproofing the basement

Basements are a common site of water leaks and flooding. Excess water in your basement also can cause some serious problems, ranging from mold to weakening your home’s foundation. A flood sensor will alert you to the water, but it will not fix the underlying cause.

Companies that specialize in waterproofing often recommend solutions such as digging, foundation spraying, epoxy injection, saw cutting, and jackhammering. All of these methods treat only the exterior foundation wall coatings, however. There’s no guarantee any of those techniques will eliminate water in your basement. Rather than redirecting water, you’ll need to completely waterproof the basement by fortifying the inside of the walls and floors.

To waterproof your basement, you’ll need:

  • A liquid rubber base.

  • Thickening activator.

  • Liquid polyurethane coating.

First, prepare the substrate by making sure it is dry and clean. This means removing any previously used products, crumbling materials, and foreign matter.

Next, prime the substrate by applying one coat of the liquid polyurethane coating. Concrete block surfaces need two prime coats of basement waterproofing products because the blocks are more porous. The first coat penetrates deep to lock and seal within the pores of the concrete permanently. The second coat begins filling the pores, pock holes, and pinholes near the surface.

Finally, patch up any seams, cracks, holes, and rough areas using LRB/TAV mixture. Mix two parts LRB (Liquid Rubber Base) with one part TAV (Thickening Activator) to create a thick, caulk-like mixture.

Now all you need to do is apply a basement waterproofing product so no moisture, vapor, or water can enter the basement.

Repairing water damage

Painting over a water stain might seem like a good idea, but simply using paint will not eliminate stains unless you use a primer-sealer first. When looking for a sealer, follow these basic guidelines:

  • Oil-based sealers usually work better than water-based.

  • You need a sealer that has a high amount of solids. Solids consist of pigments and other elements that do the actual covering of the stain. Paint, hardware, and home centers carry primer-sealers.

  • Consider using disposable brushes and rollers when using an oil-based sealer. Cleaning up after using oil-based products can be messy and often requires that you spend more on paint thinner than your brushes and rollers are worth.

  • Oil-based paint takes much longer to dry than any other painting medium.

Contact Brinks Home for more practical home security tips and to see how you can equip your home with a flood sensor.

Jason Stevens is a senior writer for Brinks Home. He is a "tech guy" who enjoys sharing home security and automation tips with others.

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