Identify and Conquer the Causes of Your Wet Basement

Friday, March 25th, 2011 by Donna Kshir

A wet basement in Indiana or Michigan can be quite a nuisance for any homeowner. If your basement currently includes a finished living space, the least amount of moisture can and will ruin drywall, framing and carpeting. Regardless if you have a finished basement, a crawl space or if you strictly use your basement for storage purposes, the slightest case of condensation can cause hardwood flooring to buckle on the above level. Condensation can also cause harmful molds; this can be a risk to children and adults with breathing difficulties and asthma. It can also cause skin irritation.

If your basement currently suffers from a dampness or wetness, you're not alone. According to studies performed by The American Society of Home Inspectors, 60 percent of homes in the United States have moisture problems in their basements. Most often, the wetness occurs from rainfall and snow melt.

Once water accumulates around the foundation of your home, the water slowly works its way into your foundation through small holes, cracks, joints, and the holes in porous materials. The key is to try to determine whether condensation, runoff, or subsurface seepage is the problem and begin taking the proper precautions.


This is also called sweating by waterproofing experts. Condensation frequently appears as water droplets, puddles, small and large wet spots on the walls and floors of your basement.
Condensation occurs when moist, warm air hits the cool walls and flooring of your foundation, it can also occur from un-insulated water pipes. This process tends to dampen carpets and rugs, rust appliances, and make the basement feel clammy to the touch.

Condensation can also cause wood to rot and walls, hardwood floors and framing to buckle. It can also encourage an insect infestation.


Large amounts of rainfall or melted snow that isn't properly routed away from the foundation of your home, is actually the biggest and most common cause of moisture in a basement and crawl space.

Runoff tends to puddle near the base of the foundation. With very little pressure, the water is then forced through small holes, cracks or gaps in the foundation walls and footing.
There are preventative measures home owners can take to help reduce the risk of a wet basement.

Rain Gutters

Rain gutters are designed to redirect runoff away from the foundation of your home and prevent runoff seepage. Improperly maintaining your homes rain gutter system may prove to be one of the worst mistakes, ever.

Leaves and other debris can and will make rain gutters run over and spill out, causing puddles, small and large, to form around the foundation. Ultimately, such activity causes damp and wet basement.

Repair Leaks

If the ceilings or walls in your home currently have water stains there could be a leak from a water pipe, bathtub, corner shower or toilet. If any of these are the cause, hire a plumber to evaluate the situation and repair the leaks.


It's always a good idea for homeowners to slope the ground in an angle away from the foundation of your home. A small slope will allow water to freely redirect itself away from your foundation, preventing water from entering your basement.

The source of your problem could be as simple as a water leak, runoff or high humidity. Over time, these can lead to mildew, mold or other biological growth. Depending on the severity, these conditions can lead to wood rot, structural damage to your home and a variety of health concerns.

Water can easily seep into your foundation from an outside source; a cracked or broken pipe, a leaky outside spigot, a small hole or crack in the foundation, or small cracks and gaps around the doors and windows of your home.

There may not be any visual signs of a leak, but moisture evaporates, and this, too, can easily increase indoor humidity. Another very common source is condensation that forms on cold concrete floors and walls. Some normal activities such as showering, cooking and drying clothing can cause high indoor humidity, and can be the main source of your problem.


If you have questions or concerns, contact a waterproofing expert that can evaluate the situation, give you an expert opinion and tell you what best suits your specific needs.
In fact, contact Nova Basement Systems today for a free estimate for basement waterproofing in Indiana. They are the local basement, crawl space and foundation experts.

Nova Basement Systems offers basement waterproofing, foundation repair, and crawl space encapsulation in Indiana and Michigan. Nova Basement Systems contractors provide service to areas such as Elkhart, Goshen, Michigan City, Valparaiso, and Niles.

our service area

We serve the following areas

Service Area
Free Quote