The short answer to this question is “yes” — but with conditions attached. The cracks must be internal, meaning they are on the inside of your foundation. The cracks also must not be leaking water themselves. So as long as the foundation or wall cracks run along the inside and are relatively dry, a basement waterproofing contractor can fill them even if it is raining outside.
However, after a foundation inspection by and consultation with the contractor, you may decide on additional preventive measures and repairs, such as a drainage system. Depending on what you decide and the urgency of the situation, the contractor may advise waiting for drier conditions.
Moisture is the source of foundation cracks and other problems associated with a foundation and basement, such as bowing walls and shifting. When it rains, soil absorbs the water. Just like a wet compacted sponge expands with moisture, so does soil. It is this expansion that causes both soil and water to press against whatever it is touching, including your home’s foundation.
When pressure is exerted against concrete, bricks, and other materials of which a foundation and basement may be constructed, those materials can crack, erode, or move. Concrete and brick are porous, so the soil expansion pushes the water against and through the materials. Once a crack forms, it can get larger and lead to future problems.
The potential for worse issues in the future is the reason you should contact a basement waterproofing distinguishing mold growth contractor as soon as you notice something is wrong. Failed waterproofing can result in hairline cracks, corrosion, and shifting, all of which can progress to weakening the foundation’s structural integrity. Even if it’s damp out, your professional waterproofing contractor can seal cracks by using a filler. If the concrete outside is cracked and the weather is damp, the contractor likely will wait for drier weather.
Ideally, any repairs involving concrete are best done in dry conditions. If your basement walls are damp, you might want to place a fan or two near the wet areas to dry them out. If conditions are bad, it might not be possible to dry out the areas yourself, so talk to your contractor about your options.
In addition to failed waterproofing, cracks may show up as a result of the foundation shifting. While the shift could be a result of soil and water pressing in or water moving the soil underneath the foundation, shifting can also occur when a home is first constructed. As a home is built above the foundation, the added weight can cause the soil to move a bit. This movement may result in hairline cracks. Your basement waterproofing contractor will be able to tell you if the cracks are caused by this movement.
Foundation cracks are indicative of poor waterproofing, and just sealing the cracks is not going to prevent water from continuing to affect your foundation, basement, and/or crawl space. This means you need to look into drainage options, such as sump pumps. If you fail to address waterproofing, potential damage might include cracked windows and ceilings and doors that don’t close all the way — all of which can happen when walls start moving and lose support. Mold and mildew are also concerns in areas with too much moisture and not enough air circulation.
Sump pumps are fairly economical solutions for homeowners in areas with a lot of rain, which increases the odds of water infiltration. Make sure to purchase ones appropriate for the area size you wish to cover and have backup batteries that don’t rely on electrical output; if the power goes off during a storm, you’ll still have a functioning sump pump.
Acculevel is a basement and foundation waterproofing contractor serving the Midwest. If you have spotted cracks in your concrete and need a reliable, professional company with plenty of waterproofing expertise to repair them, call us at (866) 669-3349 or email us at [email protected] to set up a free in-home estimate.