5 Common Sump Pump Problems

If you want that your basement should always stay dry, it is better to prevent the sump pump problems than to solve them intensively when they have already appeared.

You can pay much more for the repair works if your sump pump goes out of order. You will need to fix it immediately because even a little water can result in huge damage.

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All you Need to Know about Underpinning. Affordable Underpinning offered by Tornado Plumbing

When building a new structure or only renovate one, underpinning is the method of strengthening the basis known as building-foundation. In this article, we will talk about the reasons why every construction should go under the underpinning process, but most importantly what you should look for when picking a company to make the underpinning for your property.

When is Mandatory to do Underpinning

Underpinning might be required for many reasons such as:

  • The primary foundation is not reliable or durable;
  • The reason why the structure was built has changed;
  • The characteristics of the soil holding the foundation have changed;
  • The building of nearby constructions requires soil excavation;
  • To build another story to an existing building;
  • To prepare for natural disasters such as earthquakes or floods is recommended also to do some basement underpinning and waterproofing.

What you should receive when doing underpinning to your house

There are many companies that offer underpinning services, but when looking for one that offers an affordable underpinning solution, you want to be sure they check some major aspects such as:

  • Initial investigations to decide if extra work is needed;
  • Plan and certification made by an engineer;
  • A complete quotation of the expected work;
  • Construction permission;
  • Foundation stabilization;
  • Jacking of the foundations;
  • Force grouting;
  • Root stops;
  • Plumbing examination to guarantee there are no leaking;
  • Engineer surveillance and certification.

As you can see, there are many reasons why you should consider doing underpinning to your house. Also, there are many aspects when picking a company to work for you. Picking an organization that offers affordable underpinning solutions is not as easy as one might think because most of them reduce the quality of their work along with the price. However, if you are from Etobicoke, Mississauga or surroundings, we, the team from Tornado Plumbing are more than happy to come, take a look at your property and offer the best features for the most affordable underpinning solution.

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Exterior VS. Interior Basement Waterproofing

As a homeowner, you definitely want your home to be safe, dry and waterproof. However, the reality is that almost all basements suffer from water damage at some point. So, it’s not about IF you need basement waterproofing, but rather WHEN you will need it, and WHAT kind of waterproofing system you should choose. Below is an overview of the two main methods: interior and exterior basement waterproofing.

Interior waterproofing

SBasement waterproofing Torontoince interior basement waterproofing system comes into play, when there’s already water getting into your basement, this is not technically a waterproofing solution, but rather a water management system. When talking about interior waterproofing, we usually mean a sump pump installation – drainage system that collects water from the weeping tiles and pushes it outside the house.

Interior basement waterproofing has some advantages over exterior waterproofing like:

  • the home’s exterior landscaping is not disrupted;
  • the installation can be performed no matter what the weather conditions are;
  • it is least expensive.

However, its disadvantages are much more prominent:

  • it doesn’t keep water from penetrating inside the house;
  • water penetration hampers the block walls and may cause mold development.

So, this solution can be deployed when, for instance, excavating is not possible due to accessibility cases. But whenever possible, exterior waterproofing should be considered as a priority.

Exterior waterproofing

This solution may include partially rebuilding the foundation, applying hydrostatic mastic and installing a new drainage system, if required. The method has number of important advantages:

  • that’s a truly waterproofing method since when applied properly, it stops water from entering the home;
  • the pressure on the basement walls is relieved as water in the soil along the exterior of the basement walls drains into the drain tile;
  • there is minimal to no disturbance to the interior of basement.

Unfortunately, there are also some important disadvantages to exterior waterproofing:

  • it involves excavating and hence, disruptions of exterior landscape;
  • work may take several days to complete.

External-waterproofing-3

Unluckily, weather conditions in Toronto area cause basements to leak too often. With lots of rain in spring and fall, and lots of melting snow in winter, it seems that waterproofing in Etobicoke and its neighborhood is a must. However, it comes as a bonus that waterproofing is likely to increase significantly the price of your property if you decide to sell it at some point.
Every house is unique, and you should consult with a professional to design the proper waterproofing system for your particular home. Here at Tornado Plumbing we offer high-quality waterproofing service and are always happy to protect property of Toronto inhabitants from water damage. Feel free to contact us and stay dry!

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How to Prepare Basement for Winter?

It is a common knowledge that winters in Toronto are very cold, top it up with closeness to the lake and you have perfect conditions for basement flooding. This is the last thing you want to deal with during the cold season. Decrease of temperature and icing of the water in soil can cause cracks and leaks letting the moisture to your basement. As a result you could have mildew, mold and damage to the staff you store in the basement.

You can prepare for it in advance to avoid the consequences. Below are tips on how to prepare your basement for winder to avoid headaches during the holiday season:

Check if There is Any Water Around Basement Windows

One of the ways for moisture to enter your home are windows. Walk around your house after the rain and check if there is any water near windows of your basement. Look for accumulations of water around window wells of the basement or for spots in the lawn where water does not drain.

If there are pools of water and you do have cracks in the foundation it may cause problems. Also, check for any running water from basement windows.

Window treatmens could be a temporary fix, though eventually you may need to replace your window wells.

Make Sure Your Sump Pump is functioning

Check for water pooling around sump pump hose, this may be happening due to dips in the concrete of the basement floor. When temperature goes below zero degrees and water freezes in unheated basements, it can cause break down of the sump pump or just temporary stop.

Your discharge lines have to be insulated to ensure the water is pumped freely away from the foundation. In the worst case scenario ice may cause damage to your sump pump and you will have to change it.

If you do notice that water is collecting around the pump or that sump pump is working, call professionals from Tornado Plumbing for repair.

Cracks in Seal

If you have any cracks on the exterior of the basement it may result into water leaking into basement during rain season or when the snow is melting. It becomes even bigger problem if the water that go into those cracks freezes again, as it will expand and make cracks even bigger.
Several cycles of this process could happen in one winter and your will end up having wide cracks in the foundation, which would cause mold and moist in the basement.

To prepare for winter, check concrete for cracks before the weather becomes frosty. If you know how to fill cracks you can apply some hydraulic cement or silicone to cracks smaller than two mm. And if you are not comfortable with filling those cracks yourself, call Tornado Plumbing for help.

Clean Snow Around the House

You do not want any snow, water or ice anywhere close to you the walls of your basement. Thus, you need to shovel snow away from the house and remove any ice, before it melts and gets into the cracks to freeze again. Also, do not pile snow or ice very close to the house, move it to the far
end of your backyard.

Clear Your Gutters from Debris

Always make sure your gutters are clean and nothing is blocking water flow, before winter. If you have any soil or leafs there it will cause water to go directly into the soil around the building and freezing when the frost starts. Check all gutters and drains are clean and water can travel at least five feet away from the house.

Protect Pipepes from Freezing

When water freezes it expands and if that happens in the pipes burst. To save your house from burst pipes, make sure that waterlines are well protected from cold air and freezing temperatures. Insulation can help or putting heater in the spaces with no central heating. You can also drip warm water overnight.

If you notice high humidity levels in your basement or if you know it has poor drainage, you may need basement waterproofing. Waterproofers from Tornado Plumbing are always here to help!

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How Can Waterproofing Help You Get Rid of Mold

Moulds are parts of natural environment but they can become a serious problem if they begin growing indoors. Moulds grow in your house in places where is moisture – around leaks in roofs, windows, pipes or in basements and if left unaddressed, can spread indoors and have potential risks to human health because they produce allergens and irritants. Moulds often release spores into the air and have a negative impact on the indoor air quality because mould spores are so small that people can actually breathe them in.

Exposure to mould environments can lead to a variety of health effects on people who are sensitive to mould. It can cause eye, nose, and throat irritation, nasal stuffiness, coughing or wheezing, symptoms of asthma, skin irritation, and allergic reactions.

No matter what type of mould is present, the best practice is to remove it and take measures to prevent its future growth to make your home a healthy environment. Removing black mould is a complicated and time-consuming process that requires specialized services that can be rather expensive and disruptive to your home life or business operations. If you want to avoid that, you should take measures to prevent mould growth.

To prevent and stop mould growth and improve housing conditions, you need to eliminate factors that moulds need to survive – water intrusion and moisture. So you should control moisture in your house and fix water leaks. Water can come into your house by leaking or by seeping through basement floors. That’s why waterproofing your basement is an essential step in preventing these unwanted issues that can damage your property and present a number of health risks to people. Waterproofing solutions for wet basements include exterior waterproofing, interior waterproofing, French drains, and sump pumps which can also be used as combined methods.

Tornado Plumbing offers high-quality waterproofing services to property owners in Toronto and GTA. We use the latest waterproofing technologies, tools, materials, and techniques. We will identify all factors that need to be addressed to ensure that your property is protected from the water damage and will offer you effective solutions that meet your needs and budget. Contact us and find out how we can help you.

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Waterproofing in Toronto

The abundance of moisture makes waterproofing in Toronto and other surrounding areas an absolute necessity. As basements are built into the ground, most of them present a possibility of basement leaks that can turn what was once a dry basement into a wet basement which is a serious health hazard that can also affect the value of your home. In fact, basement moisture infiltration is a common problem for many homeowners.

Waterproofing 26-min

Recently Tornado Plumbing team was engaged in a basement waterproofing project. One of the homeowners in Toronto wanted to fix his wet basement and he wanted to avoid digging up the outside of the house foundation because excavation work would damage the landscaping around the house. Besides, the homeowner wanted to save costs as the basement was unfinished.

Tornado Plumbing offers a wide range of basement waterproofing services to permanently remedy a wet basement but, in this particular case, it was decided to install an interior waterproofing drainage system to solve the foundation seepage issues.

Our goal was to remove existing moisture, install waterproof barriers from the inside of the foundation, and build a series of weeping tiles and drains that divert accumulated water.

Waterproofing 24-min

We started by removing a section of basement floor about one foot wide along the perimeter of the basement where the drain tile was to go. After that, we made a trench along the foundation to a level even with the bottom of the foundation footing. We filled the bottom of the trench with washed gravel to serve as a porous space for water to move through. On the top of the gravel, we laid internal weeping tiles, connected them, and fitted to the basin of a sump pump. Then we poured more washed gravel on top to completely embed the pipe.

We also installed a vapor barrier on the walls to cover the seepage and help direct it to the new drain system.

Finally, we poured concrete over the trench to create a final waterproof layer.

After we’ve finished, the happy homeowner could start enjoying his new basement.

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