article

7 Simple & Smart Basement Repairs to Consider

By Andrea Davis via Realty Times

bluehammer

No space in your home is more accommodating and homey, or conversely scary, than your basement. A nicely finished basement can be the entertainment centerpiece of your entire home, housing your big-screen TV, the most comfortable couches in the place and a warm, inviting atmosphere that wraps each guest in comfort.

But, if your basement is unfinished or has other lingering issues, it can be a downright scary place to spend any amount of time. Here are a few simple tips to help you fix your basement:

#1 Gutter Extensions

Believe it or not, one of the easiest and smartest things you can do to fix your basement takes place outside. By adding extensions to your gutters' downspouts, you can avoid a lot of the issues that commonly plague basements, from foundation issues to leaking walls, mold and mildew buildup. Gutter extensions carry water away from the foundation of your house, helping to prevent seepage and long-term damage from soil erosion. Average gutter extensions cost no more than $10 per foot.

#2 Outer Foundation Work

There are two big steps you can take on the outside of your home that will protect your basement and improve your foundation. Your home ideally sits on a crown of soil that slopes six inches over the first 10 feet in all directions away from your foundation. If the soil around your foundation has settled, build it back up with a shovel and some dirt to ensure water does not build up against the foundation wall.

Second, reshape your landscape by creating a berm beyond the eaves of your home. This will prevent rot, termites and water from getting too close to your foundation. The minimum suggested distance for a dirt berm is six inches away from your home's foundation. You can complete both of these steps in a weekend and help prevent water from pooling against your foundation and leaking into your basement.

#3 Plug Visible Gaps

A number of pipes and vents have to exit the basement of your home through the foundation walls. Examples include the water pipes leading to outdoor faucets, bathroom fan vents and dryer vents. The holes drilled into the foundation to allow for pipes and vents to escape can lead to water issues in your basement through seepage and general rain intrusion. You can easily seal these cracks and holes yourself by using hydraulic cement or polyurethane caulk, both of which retail for about $20.

#4 Repair Leaky Pipes

Insulate any pipes collecting condensation. Insulation will prevent the buildup of condensation on the outside of pipes carrying hot water in the winter months and cold water in the summer months.

Always call a plumber to tackle larger jobs like major leaks or cracks. Many times these pipes run to other parts of your home and require a professional to properly address the problem.

bluehammer

#5 Insulate Your Walls

You can also prevent foundation damage by insulating your walls. As the environment inside your home heats and cools, condensation can build up on exposed foundation walls.

As the condensation builds over time, cold water can expand and crack your foundation, while warm water in the summer can lead to mold and mildew. Insulating your walls establishes a barrier between the internal environment of your home and the temperature outside.

#6 Install Drywall

If you want to improve your basement further, consider installing drywall over the insulation. This can help to dampen the temperature swings in your basement, holding in cool air in the summer and warm air in the winter.

#7 Window Repairs and Replacement

Basement windows are another source of leaks in your basement. Replace your old, faulty weather stripping or apply a polyurethane caulk around the edges to insulate your window frames. For windows that are outdated, upgrading to energy efficient windows will drastically improve the conditions in your basement and prevent seepage of both air and water.

Conclusion

There are many smart, simple ways to fix up your basement in order to create a safe, enjoyable space for friends and family.

Want to estimate your home improvement costs before talking with a contractor? Claim your home for free with bluehammer to estimate costs, secure your home inventory and learn more about your home.

* THIS REPORT IS AN OPINION THAT MAY BE INACCURATE AND IS PROVIDED SOLELY AS AN INFORMATIONAL TOOL NOT DESIGNED TO PROVIDE DEFINITIVE ANSWERS. ALL ELEMENTS ARE OFFERED "AS IS" AND BLUEBOOK EXPRESSLY DISCLAIM ANY AND ALL WARRANTIES, REPRESENTATIONS, AND GUARANTEES OF ANY NATURE, EXPRESS, IMPLIED OR OTHERWISE, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO ANY IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABLITILY, NONINFRINGEMENT, TITLE, QUIET ENJOYMENT, ACCURACY, OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. IN NO EVENT SHALL BLUEBOOK (OR THEIR SUPPLIERS) BE LIABLE FOR ANY GENERAL, DIRECT, SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL, INDIRECT OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES OF ANY KIND, OR ANY DAMAGES WHATSOEVER (INCLUDING WITHOUT LIMITATION, THOSE RESULTING FROM USE OF THE PRODUCT, INCLUDING : (1) RELIANCE ON THE MATERIALS PRESENTED, (2) COSTS OF REPLACEMENT GOODS, (3) LOSS OF USE, DATA OR PROFITS, (4) DELAYS OR BUSINESS INTERRUPTIONS, (5) AND ANY THEORY OF LIABILITY, ARISING OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE USE OR PERFORMANCE OF INFORMATION) WHETHER OR NOT BLUEBOOK HAS BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES.

Know what you should pay for your home improvement projects with bluehammer.Claim your home. It's free!

Popular


Replacing Your Kitchen Range

With both an oven and a cooktop, the range is the centerpiece for cooking in the Kitchen.

Exterminating Pests: A Guide to Family-Friendly IPM Pest Warfare

Your home is a safe haven for your family, a harbor from the rough waters of life, an abode full of treasured memories and love. But sometimes it can become a home for uninvited guests of the six-legged variety. When this occurs, it's time to take action. Addressing and preventing pest infestations keeps your family healthy and staves off potential damages to your home. Here are the steps necessary to take before and after noticing signs of pests in your home.

10 Ways To Transform Your Trashy Old Furniture Into Standout Pieces

We know. That antique sideboard or set of chairs you got after your grandma died is sentimental, but also completely clashy with every other piece of furniture you own, not to mention out of touch with your general sense of style.

Renovating With Your Kids: Projects You Can Do Together

Renovating your home? Why not make it a family affair, getting the kids involved in projects that can make them feel included and proud of their work.

It's A Great Time for Decluttering Your Home

It's always great to take some time from your busy schedule to declutter your home. While it may not always be enjoyable, here are some useful tips that can make decluttering easy and well worth it.

Replacing Your Kitchen Dishwasher

Mix water, moving parts and wear and tear and you get a dishwasher replacement project

Replacing Your Kitchen Sink and Faucet

Replacing your old sink and faucet can make a big aesthetic and performance difference in your kitchen.

6 Smart Updates To Make To Your Bathroom

The idea of renovating your bathroom can be overwhelming, but you don't have to knock down walls or gut the whole thing to make it feel new again. Making smart updates can get you closer to the look you want without the big budget, or the big hassle.

10 Spring Cleaning Tricks For Everyone

Lazy cleaning is all about minimizing the effort. But, minimal effort doesn't have to mean you live like a slob - it just means you need to know some cool tricks tools that will help do the work for you, or at least make it less painful.

The Top-Three Considerations When Starting a Home-Based Business

If you’re considering starting a home-based business, you're in good company. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, more than half of all businesses are run out of the owner’s home.

See More Articles