Spring has sprung! Is your basement ready? The temperatures are beginning to rise and soon enough the flowers will be in full bloom. While this time of year can be beautiful, it can also cause damage to your basement. Not only is Spring a time for constant rain showers; it is also the time when the soil around your home is the wettest. Along with rain, frost and snow start to melt adding more moisture to the ground than it can handle. But don’t fear! With these five easy tips you can make sure that your basement stays dry.
#1 Clean your rain gutters.
We understand how this can be the most dreaded chore of all, but it is necessary! Throughout the winter your gutters have been cluttered with sticks, leaves, and all other matters of debris. As springtime wet weather begins, your gutters become clogged with water, causing puddling around the perimeter of your home, which could lead to leaks in your basement. Once all of the debris is removed, rainwater will be able to flow easily away from your home and your basement.
#2 Check your yard’s grading.
Now some of you may be scratching your head. Your yard’s grade is the incline of your yard that allows rain, snow, and other moisture to flow away from your home. It’s important that your yard has a grade of 2%. In layman’s terms, there should be a 1 foot slope for every 50 feet of yard you have. This will ensure that any water near your home will move away from your basement, preventing possible water damage.
Learn more about your yard’s grading and other gardening hazards to your basement here.
#3 Get caulky.
When water and other moisture comes rushing towards your basement, the first line is any point of access to the outdoors, such as egress windows, doors, pipes leading outside, and vents. It’s important that all of these areas are properly sealed with a waterproof sealant-like caulk. First, inspect the area to see if there are any cracks or breaks. Then carefully remove any broken or peeling parts. All you need to do now is seal the area, smooth it out, and allow it to dry completely. Now water will REALLY have to do work to get into your basement.
As many of you know, your sump pump is a device that automatically pumps water out of your basement when water finds its way in. As the ground swells with excess moisture during the Spring, it is especially important that your sump pump is working correctly. You can test your sump pump by removing the lid and slowly pouring water into its well. As the well fills up the sump pump float should turn the pump on. Once it is on, it will complete its cycle and turn itself off automatically.
#5 Schedule a checkup for your dehumidifier.
Dehumidifiers are a homeowner’s main strategy for keeping mold and mildew at bay. Like any other appliance in your home, dehumidifiers require routine maintenance. Your dehumidifier should be set to keep the humidity in your home below 50%. This will greatly decrease the chance of mold growth. A clear sign that there is something wrong with your dehumidifier is a moldy or musty smell in your basement. By scheduling an inspection with a professional HVAC contractor, you’ll be able to fix any problems before the humidity is its worst.
Find out more about your home’s dehumidifier here.
Now that you’ve followed these easy tips, you can rest easy that your basement will be leak- and mold-free this Spring. So go outside, enjoy the fresh air, and stop and smell the roses!
With over 30 years of basement waterproofing experience, Ameri-Dry offers patented, permanently dry systems that are backed by a full lifetime warranty. For more information about Ameri-Dry and Ameri-Dry Guy, visit (www.keepamericadry.com), follow Ameri-Dry on Facebook or Twitter.