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How to Prepare Your Home Before Foundation Repairs or Waterproofing

basement with clear path for installation

Acculevel has been helping people repair and preserve their homes since our founding in 1996.  Some of the frequently asked questions have changed over the years, but this one has not: what do I need to do to prep my home for installation?

For the purposes of this article, we’ve assumed two things:

  1. You have met with one of our project advisors
  2.  You’ve signed a contract for work to be done.

If this is not the case, you may find limited value in this particular blog entry. If you are considering working with Acculevel, and are doing research ahead of time, please keep the following disclaimer in mind:  this article is not meant to replace contract terms, assume liability, or contradict instructions given by your Project Advisor.  

Our intention is to clarify what should be done, in a way that is easy to read and understand.  While these details are provided in your contract, most of it is in the fine print of ‘legalese.’  We are going to review the necessary actions here, in a more conversational way.

Our first priority is you, our customer.  All of our employees- directors, project advisors, crew members, administrative staff, our CEO- value you, your business, and your home.  

We have established these guidelines so that we can be respectful of your home and avoid any accidental damage to your belongings.  If there are any areas not covered, or not clear to you, we urge you to contact your project advisor. He or she has been to your home, and is most familiar with your particular “job site.” 


Preparing Your Home For Treatment of Mold or Biological Growth

Our crew members will be wearing PPE (personal protective equipment) recommended by OSHA to guard themselves.  

You and your family will not be required to wear this equipment because you will not be in close proximity to the application site. But that doesn’t mean you won’t be exposed to potential side effects.  The most common complaint is headaches caused by the strong odor of the cleaners; this link includes safety data sheets and general instructions for the product we use.

If you or a member of your household are allergic to dust, have asthma, or are sensitive to strong chemical odors, it will be better for your health to leave the house during treatment.   


Preparing Your Home For Repairs That Don’t Include Excavation

We provide a range of services that do not require excavation.  The most common ones are: water drainage, slabjacking, encapsulation, vapor barriers, bowed wall stabilization and structural wooden repairs (beams, joists, sill plate).  As a homeowner, you will need to prep the work area, which includes the following:

  1. Remove personal Items.  These would include things like that one-of-a-kind souvenir from your honeymoon, the vase you inherited from your great-aunt, and other valuables.  Our crews pride themselves on being respectful of you and your home, but accidents do happen. If you move irreplaceable and breakable pieces away from the work area, your home is a better work environment for everyone.  
  2. You should also remove or cover electronics in the area, to shield them from dust (more on that in a moment).
  3. Move or relocate furniture. If we’re installing water drainage in a basement and you keep items like workout gear in that area, please move that off to the side.  The crew needs a path at least 4 feet wide for themselves and the equipment, and we don’t want to dent your furniture or personal items.
  4. Plan for dust.  We do our best to prevent and/or limit this whenever possible.  But we cannot guarantee dust will not be circulated. To minimize the potential mess, we recommend that you shut down your furnace or air conditioner while the work is performed.  You may also want to close off and/or cover vents and the intake filter on your HVAC unit.  

There are a few exceptions to keep in mind:

  1. If you are having the space encapsulated, we need you to have ALL items removed from the area.  
  2. If we are doing work in a finished basement, we need you to clear the work space all the way down to the bare walls/floor.  This could include removing carpet, drywall, cabinetry- anything that blocks our access to the work area.


Preparing Your Home If Your Repairs Do Include Excavation

If we have to excavate around your home, it’s most likely for installing helical piers or straightening a basement wall.  These both involve digging, either by machine or by hand. Before our crew arrives, there are a number of tasks that need to be completed.

  1. Find the underground utilities and have them marked.  We will call 811 and order the locates to be done. However, we rely on you to inform us if this has not been completed. You live on the property, and have a ‘front row seat’ to the location flags and painted marks that should be placed in your yard. If these aren’t done, and it’s less than 24 hours before your installation, please call our office at 1-866-669-3349.  
  2. Contact a locating service company. The locating service we call may not provide exact locations for ALL utility lines. These should (but do not always) include: electrical, cable, gas, telephone, sewer, water, plumbing, TV, or radiant heat lines.  If you wish to limit the possibility of error in the location of utilities, we encourage you to also contact a locating service company to mark the lines. For a list of locating service companies in your area, please follow the 811 link below. 811 logo
  3. Inform us of any abnormal conditions underground.  If there are mines, caves, or other types of ‘gaps’ under your home, please let us know that in advance.  
  4. Prep your landscaping. It’s likely that excavation will disrupt or destroy sections of the landscaping: shrubs, flowers, etc.  We will do our best to minimize the disruption of your plantings, but you should -at least temporarily- relocate any that you do not want damaged.
  5. Plan for possible re-grading.  After the work is complete, we will back-fill the excavated area, but this will only be to a rough grade. Excavated dirt can take up to a year to fully settle.  After you’ve re-planted your shrubs and flowers, you may want to consult with a gardening or landscaping company about restoring the optimal grading and creating the outdoor space you’d like. 

We Want to Protect You and Your Home

Acculevel’s goal is to do the best and most thorough repair possible, to protect and maintain your home.  We treat every customer’s home as if it is our own. Allowing our employees into your home demonstrates trust, and we intend to repay that trust with the absolute best in customer service.   

We want to remind you that your project advisor is your best source for answers, if you have questions before installation begins.   But you are always welcome to contact our office, if you have any questions or concerns. Our phone number is 866-669-3349, and our email is [email protected].  

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