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!