With several chances of rain in the forecast for the next week in the Birmingham, AL area, water leakage may be a concern for many local homeowners. If there are cracks in your foundation or gaps between the walls and the floor, you might be at risk of ending up with a wet basement. Puddles and wet spots in the basement are more than just an eyesore – they can lead to mold growth that lowers the quality of air in your home and water damage that can put your home’s structural integrity at risk. If you do notice leaks in your home, contact Affordable Foundation and Home Repair as soon as possible.
Even if you do not see visible cracks in your foundation or if you have not noticed puddles in your basement or crawlspace, you may still have a moisture problem. Look for the following signs to be sure:
If you see ay of these signs, it could mean that water has seeped into your home and that you are in need of professional waterproofing as well as, possibly, foundation repair services. Affordable Foundation and Home Repair can provide homeowners in Birmingham, AL with high-quality basement waterproofing services.
There are a lot of things that can cause water to seep into the basement of your Birmingham home. One common cause in Alabama is foundation cracks. These cracks in your foundation can be formed in several different ways. Hot weather and dry conditions can cause soil to shrink, creating underground gaps that lead to foundation movement and cracking. Excess precipitation can cause soil to expand, pushing against the concrete and causing it to buckle or crack. Too much water can also erode soil under the foundation, leaving it to settle and crack due to a lack of support. No matter what has caused cracks to form in your foundation, there is a chance that these cracks could allow water to leak into the basement.
Wet or damp basements in Birmingham can also be the result of standing water. During frequent, heavy rains, the ground can only absorb so much water at once. Any extra water pools on top of the surface. If your yard slopes toward your home, or has low spots near the foundation, this extra water might pool against the foundation. Prolonged exposure to standing water can weaken the concrete and cause it to crumble. This standing water might also be able to seep through the porous concrete that makes up your foundation and get into your basement.
Fortunately, Affordable Foundation and Home Repair offers several waterproofing solutions and specializes in crack repair, giving us all of the necessary tools to protect your basement this summer. Our solutions for a wet basement in your Birmingham home include:
Wet basements are a hassle, but the above waterproofing and repair options for Birmingham can help keep your mind at ease this summer. Contact Affordable as soon as you see signs of basement water. We offer free estimates on waterproofing for Birmingham, AL residents.
Crawlspaces are a common occurrence in Alabama. If you have a crawlspace in your home, keep in mind that it is more than just a place to store your holiday decorations. The crawlspace is the portion of the foundation that supports the entire structure. That is why it is important to keep the crawlspace in good health. If excess moisture is allowed to collect in the crawlspace, it can cause mold growth and may also lead to wood rot or rust formation, weakening the supporting structures in your crawlspace. That is why it is important to protect your crawlspace with crawlspace encapsulation with a vapor barrier (a kind of plastic or foil sheeting designed to keep moisture out).
The main question is, is crawlspace encapsulation really worth the cost? Both having your crawlspace encapsulated with a vapor barrier and sealing off crawlspace vents will work in different ways to keep moisture out. While it may be more expensive, crawlspace encapsulation is the more effective of the two options.
The most common method used to seal a crawlspace without the installation of a vapor barrier is simply to close the vents and have them sealed shut. One might also physically remove the vents and patch and seal the area where they were. Normally, this option is not very expensive. Other options to seal the crawlspace without vapor barriers include vapor retardant paint. This can be applied to the crawlspace interior rather affordably. However, vapor retardant paint is not nearly as effective as an actual vapor barrier. In addition, if the paint becomes damaged in any way, its ability to resist moisture seepage is compromised.
Closed crawlspaces offer a lot of advantages to open crawlspaces. They do not allow humid air to enter the crawlspace, they are more resistant to insect and pest infestations, and they save on heating and cooling costs for your home.
However, when it comes to whether or not merely sealing off your crawlspace is as good as installing a vapor barrier, the answer is no. While sealing your crawlspace reduces moisture entry, sealed crawlspaces still allow moisture to seep into them through the walls. This is because the walls and floor of crawlspaces are made of porous material. Water can seep through this porous concrete and end up inside your crawlspace. Vapor retardant paint reduces this occurrence, but will not eliminate it as well as a crawlspace vapor barrier. If you want to maximize the results of a closed crawlspace, you should invest in a dehumidifier as well, since this will help remove some of the moisture that seeps into the home. The effects will likely not be as effective as total crawlspace encapsulation, but they may be improved by a dehumidifier. We recommend Santa Fe Dehumidifiers.
There are a few drawbacks when considering whether or not to install a vapor barrier in your crawlspace. One drawback is the cost. Vapor barrier installation costs vary, depending on the condition of the crawlspace (preparatory work may need to be completed beforehand) and the size of your crawlspace. Prices may range anywhere from $2,000 to $14,000. Another disadvantage is that vapor barriers are not a do-it-yourself job. In order to ensure that your vapor barrier works correctly have it installed by a professional. The crawlspace encapsulation experts at Affordable Foundation and Home Repair will work with you to get the job done quickly and to your satisfaction, all while giving you the most affordable option possible.
Despite these downfalls, there are several advantages to installing a vapor barrier in your crawlspace. Some of these advantages include:
While there are some drawbacks to investing in crawlspace encapsulation, they are far outweighed by the benefits. If you have a damp or moldy crawlspace, call Affordable Foundation and Home Repair today. We can clean your crawlspace with mold soda blasting and install a vapor barrier to keep moisture out. Get in touch today for a free estimate.
Even though much of Alabama remains in a drought, it is important to prepare your home and foundation for the rainy days that often accompany springtime. It may seem contradictory to prepare for rain and moisture in the midst of a drought. However, several drought-related foundation problems could have made your foundation and home more susceptible to water leakage.
The continuing drought in areas of Alabama has caused several issues for homeowners, business owners, and farmers – increased forest fires, interruption of winter planting cycles, stressed plants, lack of water, etc. However, another problem that may have occurred due to the drought is foundation damage.
When the soil becomes extremely dry, it will shrink. This shrinkage causes the soil to settle and shift. If the soil under your foundation settles, the above home will settle as well. This can cause cracks to form in your walls or ceiling and gaps to appear between the walls and the floor. Soil shifting that results in voids forming under your foundation can cause the slab to settle unevenly or to shift to one side. This movement can also lead to exterior foundation cracks, interior cracks, or gaps and spaces opening in your home. If any of these problems occur in your home, you may see
The more cracks and gaps that form in your home, the more susceptible your home is to water entry. This is just one of the problems that can affect your home if sudden spring rains occur during a drought. Erosion can also become an issue if significant precipitation occurs, as sudden rains will wash away dry soil instead of soaking into the ground gradually. This water can leak into your home or put pressure on your foundation.
Here at Affordable Foundation and Home Repair, there are a number of things that we can do to reduce the chances of moisture damage in your home. A few solutions that we offer to repair drought-related foundation damage and protect your home from water entry:
If you see cracks or other signs of foundation damage that may have resulted from the recent drought conditions in your home, call us now. Our team will work to repair your foundation and ensure it is equipped to handle rain and water seepage.
Have you started to notice a musty odor in your home? Have your allergies become more severe – coughing, watery eyes, sore throat? If so, there could be a crawlspace mold problem in your home.
It is not uncommon for mold to grow in Alabama crawlspaces. Even though this mold may be i the crawlspace of your home, it can infect the air that you and your family breathes throughout the entire home. That is because air from the crawlspace circulates through the home – up to 40% of air on the first floor comes from the crawlspace. This is due to the fact that air flows from the ground up in homes, known as the “stack effect.”
Now that you know why mold in the crawlspace is a problem, it is time to determine whether or not you have a mold issue in your home. Aside from noticing mold-related symptoms such as shortness of breath, coughing, red eyes, and sore throats, you might also notice signs of mold in your crawlspace or basement itself:
These are all indications that your crawlspace has a moisture issue that is causing mold growth. If you notice these signs on your home, call Affordable Foundation and Home Repair for a solution right away.
How do we get rid of the mold in your home? First, we use a method called mold soda blasting to strip mold off of all surfaces in your crawlspace. By blasting baking soda at a high-pressure, we are able to remove mold and disinfect the area. The baking soda is both abrasive enough to remove the mold and gentle enough not to harm surfaces.
Once this step is complete, we can install a crawl space vapor barrier. These are made from plastic or foil sheeting designed to keep out water. The vapor barrier is installed along the entire interior of the crawlspace. They can also be paired with interior drainage and surface drainage methods to expel water that has made its way inside. Surface drainage techniques like installing proper downspouts and grading the yard around the foundation reduce the amount of water that can seep inside. Interior drainage with a sump pump system helps remove water during flooding and heavy rains to keep the area dry.
We can find the right solution to remove crawlspace mold from your Alabama home. Call Affordable Foundation and Home Repair to get rid of mold and mildew in your basement or crawlspace in the Birmingham and Huntsville, AL areas.
So far this summer, Alabama has had its fair share of rainy days. The upcoming forecast for the Decatur, AL area appears to continue this trend. During long periods of wet, rainy weather, it is important to take the necessary measure to protect your home. Poor preparation could lead to a wet basement or crawlspace for Decatur homes this week. Fortunately, Affordable Foundation and Home Repair offers the perfect solution for heavy rains – sump pump installation and repair.
Homeowners who already have a sump pump know how important they are – they protect your home from becoming flooded during heavy storms and extended rainy periods. Even a small leak can be a big problem when rainy conditions continue for days on end. The more saturated that the ground is, the more water will be forced through any small crack or gap in your foundation walls. If you have any existing cracks in your foundation, you may not be able to totally prevent water from entering your home.
That is where a sump pump comes in. Any water that enters your basement or crawlspace will be collected by the interior drainage system or will flow into a floor drain. This water will be emptied by the drain or the drainage channels into the sump pit, which houses the sump pump. From the sump pit, the sump pump forces any water out of the basement through another drainage pipe. This water is carried out of the home and far enough away from the foundation that it will not seep back into the concrete and cause issues. Our sump pumps are capable of pumping up to 5,000 gallons of water per hour, and have more than enough power to handle the upcoming rains in Decatur, Alabama.
Here at Affordable Foundation and Home Repair, we offer both sump pump repair for any issues with existing sump pumps, and sump pump installation for homes without a sump pump. We will replace old sump pumps or install new sump pumps for residents who do not currently have one.
Here is some additional information on the different kinds of sump pumps and pits that we offer for your Decatur, AL home:
Prevent water damage and flooding in your Decatur, AL home over the next few weeks with a sump pump from Affordable Foundation and Home Repair. We can help you protect your home during upcoming rainy conditions in Decatur. Call today to learn more!