finished basement

The Basics of Finishing a Basement

Basement Finishing Basics

Whether you’ve lived in your home for decades or you just moved into a newly constructed abode, finishing your basement might be on your mind. There are a number of reasons to consider this remodeling project. Some families, for example, simply need the extra space! If you have friends or relatives who often stay overnight or if you have lots of children, a finished basement can provide the room your household needs to keep everyone happy. In other cases, homeowners are interested in finishing their basements to prepare their homes for sale. This can be a great selling point, particularly in areas where the real estate market is ultra-competitive. No matter why you’re thinking about finishing the basement in your home, the information in this guide will help you get started. Remember, you may need to do additional research before tackling some aspects of your upcoming renovation. Don’t undertake complicated electrical work, for instance, without consulting a professional!

Make Sure Your Basement Is Waterproof

Waterproofing a basement might seem like a daunting task, but it’s something you can get started on fairly easily. First, inspect your basement to see if there are any obvious leaks. If you find small cracks or holes that are letting in water, fill them with hydraulic cement. This compound expands as it dries, keeping water out for good. It’s also a good idea to walk around outside your house, making sure all soil is sloped away from the basement’s exterior walls. Otherwise, rainwater could run right into your underground space. You should also inspect for cracks that aren’t visible from inside and fill them the same way you did any interior cracks.

If you have a major flooding problem or if you see lots of cracks that are wider than a pencil, it’s a good idea to contact a professional. You may have foundation issues or other structural problems that need to be addressed before you continue finishing your basement for everyday use.

Complete Plumbing and Electrical Work

Some unfinished basements already have functional plumbing and electric, but typically lack fixtures. If this is your situation, you don’t have nearly as much work ahead of you as someone who is starting from scratch. You simply need to make sure everything is in good working order and purchase toilets, sinks, and light fixtures to install where your existing pipes and wires are. If, however, you have to completely plumb and wire your space, it’s a good idea to at least consult with a professional plumber and a professional electrician before you get started. This way, you’ll know if there are any serious issues you should be aware of. You may even decide that it’s worth the money to let an expert complete your plumbing and wiring for you.

Think About How You’ll Use the Space

As you read earlier, every family intends to use their finished basement differently. As a result of this, there’s no cookie-cutter plan for you to follow when the time comes for you to design and layout your new space. This doesn’t have to be stressful, though; instead, it can be a lot of fun! You get to create the perfect place for your family, suited specifically to your unique needs. First, think about how you’ll be using the space. Maybe, for example, you’d like to have a theatre room in your newly finished basement. Or, perhaps you want to make sure the space is universally appealing for when you list your home in the near future. No matter what, it’s important to take the time to consider what will truly make your new addition work for your needs.

Which Basement Waterproofing Method is Most Effective?

Waterproofing Your Basement

If you are looking to waterproof your basement, there are plenty of methods and options to choose from. Learn more about the various types of basement waterproofing to decide which is the best fit for your home and your budget.

Interior Basement Waterproofing

Interior waterproofing is the most common type of waterproofing for households in the Northeast. This method is often used when there is an imminent threat of flooding or moisture in the basement because it can be installed relatively quickly compared to its alternatives. The cause of the need for an interior waterproofing is often groundwater pressure on the foundation of the basement.

Exterior Basement Waterproofing

Exterior waterproofing are more intrusive than interior jobs, involving advanced equipment and several skilled technicians. The foundation of your home must be excavated, which typically disrupts your entire home and family but once complete, you are left with a reliable waterproofing system.

French Drain

This method involves drilling a hole in the foundation to make way for a drain and sump pump to remove any moisture that enters your basement. A vapor barrier is often included to decrease moisture entering your basement through other surfaces such as basement walls.

Sealants

Sealants are still disputed by many basement waterproofing professionals but have been used as, typically, a temporary fix to a water issue in some basements. Sealants are often offered in paint-form and are inexpensive compared to the other approaches but are overall less effective and have been proven to fail after some time, leaving customers to choose an alternative waterproofing system. 

Contact a Basement Waterproofing Professional

The best way to figure out the waterproofing method that is best for your basement is to ask a professional. Contact B-Dry Systems today to get our professional opinion on how to best waterproof your basement today!

Basement Waterproofing Basics You Need to Know

Choosing Your Basement Waterproofing Method

Choosing a method to waterproof your basement is the first step you must take after deciding to go ahead with this home improvement project. Whether your basement has moisture issues and you are addressing them or if this is a preventative measure, it one of the best ways to invest in your home. Follow along to find out more about the different ways you can prevent water damage in your basement.

Interior Waterproofing

Many people choose an interior waterproofing system over exterior waterproofing systems for several reasons. Interior waterproofing addresses hydrostatic pressure or pressure from groundwater that ends up seeping through your basement walls and foundation that causes damage to your home. This method is used both when there is an imminent threat and most times, water is already in your basement and as a preventative measure. In order to install the system, a professional will have to break through your wall or foundation and install a new draining system and a sump pump to safely divert the groundwater away from your home.

Exterior Waterproofing

Exterior basement waterproofing is a much more invasive approach than interior waterproofing. Typically, an exterior waterproofing system will require a complete excavation of your foundation. Because it requires so much disruptive work, the best time to install an exterior waterproofing is when your home is being built or under construction. The major difference between exterior and interior systems are that exterior relies on a waterproof coating that prevents water from getting into your basement. This system forms a thick barrier between your basement and the water trying to come in. 

Invest in a Basement Waterproofing System

B-Dry Systems of Massachusetts offers the best solution for your basement water problems.  With a lifetime warranty, you can rest assured knowing your basement will be covered for life. Contact us today for a free estimate on waterproofing your basement!

rainwater pattern

How to Keep Heavy Rain Out of Your Basement

Diverting Rain From Your Basement

This winter has been surprisingly rainy so to help our fellow New Englanders stay dry in this unexpected rain, we’ve prepared this guide with the best ways to keep your basement rain-free this winter. Follow along for advice from some of the the industry’s most experienced professionals!

Clean Your Gutters

While the winter months aren’t the best time to get outside and work, this may be necessary. If your gutters are clogged, they could be the source of a water problem in your basement. If you can see rainwater flowing regularly, your gutters are most likely safe but if not, take a closer look.  

Install Downspouts

Adding downspouts to your home will help push water even further away from your home and basement. The further away you can push the water, the better your odds will be of keeping your basement dry. You can easily install external add-on downspouts to your system or you can have a professional install below ground extensions that have been proven to be even more effective.

Invest in a Sump Pump

Purchasing a sump pump and placing it in the trouble areas of your yard and/or driveway will help move water away from your property and dispose of it in a less dangerous place. The easiest way to do so is to run a long hose from your pump into the street but be sure the water is not running back toward your home.

Waterproof Your Basement

The only way to guarantee your basement remains dry throughout the year is to invest in a waterproofing system. By choosing a company with a lifetime warranty, you’ll ensure your basement is safe as long as you own the home. Contact B-Dry Systems today for a free estimate on waterproofing your basement!

Keeping Your Basement Dry In the Winter

finished basement living room

Many New England homeowners are faced with tough situations in the winter from shoveling their cars out of the snowy streets to keeping their home safe under the drastic weather changes. Use our guide to help make sure basement water issues will not be a problem in your home this winter.

Check Gutters & Downspouts

You cannot guarantee your home is safe from moisture issues without making sure your gutters and downspouts are free of issues. Gutters should be cleaned in the fall but at the very least, be sure they are cleaned at the beginning of winter to rid of any and all debris that fell during the stormy fall so that water doesn’t spill over and go into your foundation. Adding extensions onto your downspouts will push the water even further away from your foundation for an added layer of security.

Prevent Indoor Humidity

If you have a dehumidifier, keep it running to prevent moisture issues in your basement. Most homeowners don’t think the winter requires dehumidifiers but it is best to keep it on all year to guarantee your basement will remain moisture-less.

Identify & Fill Foundation Cracks

Water seeping through cracks in walls and foundations are typically the greatest cause of basement water issues. Find and fill all cracks and leaks in your basement walls and foundation to avoid such problems.

Waterproof Your Basement Completely

The only way to guarantee that your basement will remain completely dry and waterproof this winter is to invest in a complete basement waterproofing system. B-Dry Systems has been helping home and business owners waterproof their basements for decades. Contact us today for a free estimate on a basement waterproofing with a lifetime warranty.

Types of Basement Waterproofing- Interior vs. Exterior

water heater leak

Waterproofing your basement is one of the best decisions you can make to prevent pricey damage to your home. There are several ways to ensure your home is safe from water damage through leaks and flooding that threaten the safety of your basement. Learn more about the different types of basement waterproofing to decide which is best for your home.

Interior Basement Waterproofing

Concrete Waterproofing Coating

This interior basement waterproofing technique includes a thick concrete layer between your basement interior and the outside. Once the concrete coating drys, it will begin protecting your basement from water damage immediately. The concrete mixture is sensitive so it cannot be applied to previously painted walls, limiting the places where it can be applied.

Silicate-based Concrete Sealers

This method is also known as desifiers also has the limitation of not working on previously painted walls nor can you paint over them once applied. This usually turns most people off to this option, though it is one of the most cost-effective and easiest to apply.

Waterproofing Paint

Acrylic formula paint offers another easily-installed waterproofing option for homeowners. To apply the paint, you simply paint the necessary walls with several coats of paint and will need about one gallon per 75 square feet.

Exterior Basement Waterproofing

The most thorough basement waterproofing system will inevitably be installed by professionals. Though the interior waterproofing methods above have been proven to be effective, they will only work if leaks and cracks have been sealed, which is tough to guarantee if you are not a trained professional. Investing in a complete exterior waterproofing system is the best way to rest assured knowing you will never have to worry about the water damage your basement could suffer from if it is not properly waterproofed. A team of professionals will evaluate the entire exterior of your home to find any problem areas and address them accordingly. The specific methods used will depend upon the needs of your home but by hiring a professional waterproofing company, you will be sure to get the best waterproofing system for your home.

B-Dry Systems of Massachusetts has been helping Massachusetts families stay safe and dry for decades. Contact us today for a free estimate on waterproofing your home!

Places to Check for Water Leaks in Your Home

water pipe leak

If you have a leak in your home but aren’t sure where it’s coming from, this is the guide you need. Having a leak anywhere in your home is a major risk to the safety of your entire home so solving this as soon as possible is crucial. Use our guide to help identify the leak and find a solution immediately.

Toilets

Toilet leaks are often to blame for a majority of water leaks in residential buildings and homes. The problem goes unnoticed because it is an internal issue that often doesn’t make noise or have other obvious signs. Check the toilets around your home by removing the top and listening for a hissing sound after flushing.

Hot Water Tank

Check the pressure relief valve on your hot water tank for a common place for leaks in your home. If you hear sounds from the valve or the pipe and drain connected, you may have a leakage.

Gutters

If you don’t consistently clean your gutters, you may have a leak from build up. Seasonal cleanings will avoid this issue, especially after fall. In addition to checking your gutters, be sure your drainpipes are free of blockages.

Everywhere

Some leaks could be impossible for the naked eye to spot. A good way to test if there is a leak in your home is to shut off the water in your entire home then check your water meter. Record the reading and go back an hour later and check it again an hour later to see if the reader has changed. If so, you definitely have a leak problem and need to consult a professional immediately to find and address the leak. 

Never again worry about basement water issues with B-Dry System’s basement waterproofing system! Find out more about our system here and contact us today to get a quote for waterproofing your basement.

What Is A French Drain & How Does It Work?

Many homes, businesses, and industrial buildings use a french drain as the main component of their drainage system, as it has proven to be a highly-effective system. What exactly is a French drain and how does it work? We’re glad you asked! Follow along and get some answers to learn more about how a French drain can keep your home dry and safe.

The Basics of French Drains

The structure that makes up a French drain is designed to make water flow through it smoothly and effectively. The water flows eventually to a trench which is filled with gravel, and finally through a perforated pipe at the bottom. The most important part of the system is the point at which the pipe empties, which must be a calculated distance from the home to ensure the home will not be at risk of water damage.

Trench Bottom Design

The bottom of the trench drain must be designed and placed very specifically. The bottom should be sloped approximately an inch for every 8 feet in the direction in which the water should flow. This point cannot be stressed enough; it will make or break the entire system.

Water Diversion

Deciding where to divert the water can be a difficult decision depending on the layout of your property and will certainly require a professional opinion. The best places to divert your water are typically the street, a drainage ditch, or a low-lying area of your yard/property.

Do I Need A French Drain?

If you have any moisture problems in your home, it is best to get all water as far away from your home as possible. Many families will notice telling signs such as a frequently wet lawn or water exposure in your basement. If you experience any of these issues, you should inquire about getting a French drain.

B-Dry Systems uses French drains as part of our award-winning basement waterproofing system. Contact us today for a free estimate and learn more about our system here!

Guide to Finishing Your Basement- What You Need to Know

finished basement

If you are interested in finishing your basement, there are several necessary steps to take to ensure the new space is safe and liveable. Use our guide below to help make sure you are prepared for the extensive process and that your hard work isn’t compromised by the consequences of forgetting an important step!

Decide on a Design

The first step that many homeowners take, and often the easiest, because a basement finishing project is usually born from one’s vision. Transitioning these ideas into more practical realities will be necessary for you to move on with a more cohesive plan for your basement.

Research the Legal Aspects

Depending on where you live, there could be legal aspects to your basement finishing job. Many cities require you to obtain a building permit so it is best to do this research far ahead of when you plan to start building. You will also likely need a building plan when you apply for the permit so be sure you are taking the necessary steps to stay proactive.

Waterproof Your Basement

Countless homeowners proceed with a basement finishing project without protecting the space with a waterproofing system and end up losing all their hard work. Basements are the most vulnerable place in your home to water damage and leaks. By investing in a basement waterproofing system, you can guarantee your basement will not be plagued with water damage that will cost you thousands of dollars.

Call Your Plumber

If you are adding plumbing to your basement, this is the time to complete the installation process. Call your plumber or begin installing the necessary systems yourself.

Install Electricity

After the plumbing is completed, it is time to call your electrician and give the basement electricity. If you would also like heating and air conditioning, you should call a trusted HVAC professional at this time.

Put Up Ceiling

If your basement is in need of a new ceiling, the basement is now ready for it after the plumbing and electricity are completed.

Furnish & Decorate

Now that all the tedious work is complete, it’s time to decorate and furnish your new space! Take your time choosing the best furniture and design for the space so you can make it exactly what you had in mind!

The Causes & Costs of a Flooded Basement During Fall

flood

Dealing with a flooded basement is overwhelming and it can be hard to know where to begin repairs. Use our guide to help address the flooding issues in your basement and know how much you should expect it to cost.

Most Common Causes for Basement Flooding

Even the nicest, most modern homes have basement flooding issues, it is simply the science of water running from high to low ground which makes flooding often unavoidable. Often times, rain is the main cause of a basement flooding. You should be hyper aware of this possibility during particularly rainy seasons such as fall. If your foundation has any cracks, rainwater will likely make its way through and cause moisture issues in your basement. Inspect your basement for any cracks that could pose a threat. The slope of your property can also cause your basement to flood. Ideally, your yard will slope away from your home, directing rainwater away from your home and basement to avoid flooding issues but if it is not this way, you are more likely to experience a basement flooding.

How Much Does A Flooded Basement Cost?

Repairing your basement and all of your property is a hefty feat, especially because it is often unexpected. The total cost of repairing your basement after a flooding will depend greatly on factors specific to your situation including how long the water sits, how large your basement is, how much water there is, and what you have in your basement at the time of the flood. In our experience, more minor floods can cost about $10,000 to repair whereas larger, more significant floods are closer to $25,000-$50,000.

How to Prevent a Basement Flood

While you can do things like check for foundation cracks and clean your gutters to help prevent basement flooding, the only way to surely avoid a basement flood is to properly waterproof your basement. B-Dry Systems has been waterproofing basements with our perfected system across the country for decades. Contact us today for an estimate on waterproofing your basement and avoid any flooding issues!