Waterproofing Your Foundation? What Is The Right Choice?
by: Dagmar Rakos
What is foundation waterproofing?
Waterproofing is Protecting your property foundation - be it residential or commercial - from cracks due to natural processes such as water damage, thermal movement, shrinking, settlement and other causes.
Think of foundation waterproofing as a long term solution for protection of your property.
Did you know that 44% of new homes have leaking basements without 3 years of completion? And the warranty on dry basement on a new home in USA and Canada is only 1 or 2 years?
Think of what can happen if you don't pay attention to properly seal your house foundation.
It not only causes countless damage to your property it also decreases value of your house, costs money to repair, wastes time, not to mention various health and life hazards.
So what is the Solution to this problem?
Waterproof your property the right way as you build it!
There are many products on the market and it is difficult to choose at times, but not all are the same quality.
The easiest, simplest and smartest way is to apply rubberized liquid membrane. Liquid rubber membranes are elastomeric polymerized coatings made from liquid rubber - the same quality tough material your car tires are made from.
Advantages: They are easiest to apply, quick to dry, cold applied. You can do it by yourself, by using sprayer, roller or trowel. The liquid cures into an elastic rubber coating on the wall, able to fill up eventual cracks in foundation wall because of its flexibility. They also come with a long warranty and are very cost effective.
If you want the best ones you should aim at the ones which are environmentally friendly, non-toxic, non-flammable, also VOC compliant, offer superior vapor and water barrier protection, and no priming is required before installation.
Disadvantages: Possibility of inconsistency in coverage, but the newest liquid rubber foundation waterproofing membranes will help you to determine the "right" thickness by intensity of color f.e. the Gray Coat All Seasons Formula from Aquasealusa.com blends in with the concrete foundation, so over-spraying is no longer a problem, making it much easier for the applicator to apply.
There are of course other products on the market like sheet membranes, cementitous waterproofing, hot tar or bentonite, but they either don't offer such a long warranty, are labor intensive or low quality, or you have to use company employees/certified technicians who are the only ones allowed to apply their product which will cost extra money.
Basically it comes what your needs are and how much money your are willing to invest to protect your property properly.
What seems to be cheaper at the beginning can be Very costly later on if you don't do it right the first time.
© Dagmar Rakos
About The Author
Dagmar Rakos is the site Administrator for Waterproofing-foundation-guaranteed.com
Preventing Water Damage in Your Basement
The wet basement can develop into a complete disaster especially since many maintenance systems are installed in it. For example: electrical wires, water and sewage pipes, garbage disposal etc.
Heating and air conditioning systems must be inspected frequently. Check the drain pans and remove debris to allow free flow. Inspect the filters and replace whenever needed. When inspecting the HVAC, look at the ductwork and seal deteriorating insulations.
Pipes condensation is a common plumbing problem caused by sweating pipes. This problem promotes mold corrosion and rot if ignored. Insulating your pipes will reduce condensation.
Sump pump systems assist in keeping unwanted water out of your home. When checking the pump, make sure the outlet pipe is not frozen or clogged and that it directs water away from your home. Clean the air hole in the discharge line and make sure that the motor is running well. Test the pump by filling the sump pit with water to make sure the pump is working properly. Check that the pump is actually pumping out water.
Walls and Ceiling
Check the walls and look for moisture signs. Moist walls may indicate an internal leak. Look at the walls and search for stains. If you detect stains, follow them to locate the source of the problem and fix it. Even the smallest sign for a leak in the basement must be treated promptly.
Foundations are not always waterproof. Gaps and cracks are created as the house shifts and settles over time. Landscape is also changing over time and may lead to excessive water in the soil around your home. Seek professional help if you need to make any landscape or foundations repairs.
When checking the ventilation systems, be sure to inspect all ventilation systems including water heater, exhaust fans, dryer vents etc. if you suspect any failure in these systems, repair it right away.
Residential Real Estate...and Water Damage Claims-What you should know
Homeowners’ insurance is a must for any owner of residential real estate. It has been around for many years, coming to the rescue of many real estate homeowners. Leaky pipes and their subsequent damage have been causing homeowners grief for an even longer time. Homeowners’ insurance has alleviated such problems by underwriting the cost for repairs.
I remember as a child my father making repairs with money from our homeowner’s insurance policy. He told me that there was never a claim too small, unless it was within the deductible range.
While my father’s information was correct for the times, the rules for small claims on residential real estate have changed. Submitting a small claim today, especially for water damage, could cost you multitudes more in the future.
A California Insurance Department study showed that 25 percent of insurance companies refused to renew policies for residential real estate owners, who made one or two non-water damage claims within the past three years. The figure rose to 32 percent, when the claims were water damage-related. This means the insurers are paying the legitimate claims but are apt to drop those real estate customers at policy renewal time.
Additionally, all insurers share claims information through the Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange (CLUE) database. Not only are you apt to be dropped by your current residential real estate insurer, but others may not approve you. The study also showed that 62 percent of the top 13 insurers in the state of California refused applicants with only one-to-two claims in the past three years.
If another insurer does approve you, it will most definitely be at a much higher premium rate that will add up over the years to a much larger amount than the small water damage claim you made.
So, what has changed?
Toxic Mold Litigators have jumped on the toxic mold lawsuit bandwagon. Toxic mold comes from water damage repairs that were incorrectly made or only partially cleaned up. It can literally make the real estate residents very ill. Some toxic mold is created by homes that were not quality built and allowed water to seep in between the outer and inside walls. There have been a few multimillion-dollar homes in California that had to be totally leveled due to toxic mold.
Insurance companies generally are expected to pick up the tab and then sue the repair contractor or original builder for reimbursement. This attitude has caused a lot of litigation — between insurers and residential real estate owners, as well as between insurers and parties assumed to be responsible for the toxic mold. They often lose court cases for reimbursement, as well as incurring attorney fees and court costs. Is it any wonder insurance companies have become gun-shy of small water damage claims that could lead to costly repairs and litigation later.
Administrative Costs Another reason for the change in attitude toward water damage claims is the change in real estate insurers’ business practices. Since the early 90s, real estate insurers have looked for more practical ways to increase profits. Through studies, they found that small claims created the same large administrative costs as the larger claims, even though the payouts were small. They now weed out residential real estate customers who make small claims.
Alternative Game Plan for Real Estate Homeowners Today, it is better not to make small damage claims of any type. Real estate homeowners should increase their deductibles to $1,000 or $2,500. This reduces their premium costs by as much as 30 percent. They are covered for large damages but not paying for services (small claims) that they are not receiving.
With the larger deductible, the premium savings can be placed into a savings account to pay for small claims that would earlier have been submitted to the insurer. Whenever used, the money should be replaced as soon as possible.
After seven-to-ten years of submitting no claims, most real estate insurers will qualify you for a claims-free discount, saving you even more money.
Is It Worth It? In deciding if you should submit a claim (even a larger one), first determine if it is worth the possibility of losing your policy and/or paying higher rates. Add up all the repair costs. Determine how much the real estate insurer will pay, based on your policy. Subtract your deductible. Is the remainder only a couple hundred dollars or substantially more? Now, determine if it is worth it. Remember, even moving to another state will not escape the CLUE database.
John Harris is an expert researcher and writer on real estate topics such as economics, credit improvement tips, home selling advice and home buying preparations. For more on San Diego Homes for Sale visit http://www.twtrealestate.com