Basement Drying >> How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement

Flood Depth
The primary consideration in dry floodproofing, and the one that imposes the greatest limitations on the application of this method, is the effect of hydrostatic pressure. Because dry floodproofing prevents water from entering the house, How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement the external hydrostatic pressure exerted by flood waters is not countered by an equal force from water inside the house (see Chapter 2).
 This external pressure results in two significant problems: heavy unequalized loads on the walls of the house and buoyancy, or uplift force, which acts on the entire house. When water How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement builds up against a wall, it pushes laterally against the wall. As the depth of water increases, so does this force, as indicated by the arrows in Figure 7-5.
Tests performed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers1 have shown that, in general, the maximum allowable flood depth for masonry and masonry veneer walls is approximately 3 How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement feet. In these tests, walls exposed to greater depths of water either collapsed or suffered serious structural damage. No definitive testing has been carried out for conventional frame walls without masonry veneer.
 However, it is generally accepted that they are difficult to seal, weaker than masonry and How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement masonry veneer walls, and likely to fail at lower depths. Hydrostatic pressure is exerted not only by flood water but also by soils saturated by floodwaters. As a result, basement walls can be subjected to pressures much greater than that from 3 feet of water alone (see Figure 7-6). These pressures can easily cause basement walls to buckle inward or collapse (see Figure 2-8 in Chapter 2).
 For this reason, your community’s floodplain management ordinance or law does not allow basements in substantially damaged or substantially improved houses to be dry floodproofed. In How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement fact, these basements must be filled in. Figure 7-5 The hydrostatic pressure exerted by flood water (including buoyancy) increases with depth. WARNING The flood depth limits discussed here are provided as general guidelines only.
 Before you attempt to dry floodproof your house, a design professional, such as a structural engineer, must inspect it to determine whether it is structurally sound. As shown in Figure 7-6, water and saturated soils also push up from below the house. This buoyancy force causes additional problems How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement and creates a potential for damage that underscores the need to restrict dry floodproofing to areas where flood depths are low and to prohibit dry floodproofed basements.
 The buoyancy force resulting from flood depths of over 3 feet can separate a dry floodproofed house from its foundation and buckle concrete slab floors in dry floodproofed slab-ongrade houses. It may be difficult to imagine, but it is possible for a house with a dry How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement floodproofed basement to be pushed out of the ground during large floods. The degree of danger posed by buoyancy depends on the flood depth, the type of soil at the house site, how saturated the soil is, the duration of the flood, whether the house has a drainage collection and disposal system, and how well that system works.
 Flow Velocity, Erosion and Scour, Debris Impact, and Wave Action Dry floodproofing does not protect a house from the hydrodynamic force of flowing water, erosion and How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement scour, the impact of ice and other floodborne debris, or wave action. If your house is in an area subject to any of these hazards you should consider an alternative retrofitting method, such as elevation on an open foundation (see Chapter 5), relocation (this chapter), or demolition (this chapter).
Dry floodproofing a house does not normally change its vulnerability to damage from high winds or earthquakes. Flood Duration Flood duration is an important How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement consideration because the potential for seepage through and deterioration of the materials used to seal the house increases with the length of time that the house is exposed to flooding. Also, the longer the duration, the greater the likelihood that the soil beneath and adjacent to the house will become fully saturated and add to the loads on the walls and floor (see Figure 7-6).
If your house is in an area where flood waters remain high for days, weeks, or even months at a time, How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement you should consider an alternative retrofitting method, such as elevation or relocation. Human Intervention Dry floodproofing systems almost always include components that have to be installed or activated each time flooding threatens. One example is a flood shield placed across a doorway.
 For this reason, dry floodproofing is not an appropriate retrofitting method in areas where there is little or no flood warning or where, for any other reason, the homeowner will not be able or willing to How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement install shields or other components before flood waters arrive. Post-Flood Cleanup Remember that flood waters are rarely clean.
They usually carry sediment, debris, and even corrosive or hazardous materials such as solvents, oil, sewage, pesticides, fertilizers, and other chemicals. How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement The walls of a dry floodproofed house will be exposed to whatever is in the flood waters. Cleaning up a dry floodproofed house after a flood may therefore involve not only removing mud and debris from around the house but also decontaminating or disinfecting walls and other exterior surfaces.
 Modifications Required for Dry Floodproofing
 Dry floodproofing involves the use of sealants and shields, installation of a drainage system, and protection of service equipment. Sealants Except for some types of high-quality concrete, most wall materials are not impervious to water. Therefore, sealants must How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement be applied to the walls of a dry floodproofed house to prevent leakage. Flexible sealants are compounds (such as asphalt coatings) or materials (such as polyethylene film) that are applied directly to the outside surface of the house walls.
Sealants must also be applied to all structural joints, such as the joint between the walls and a slab floor, and to any other openings below the flood level, such as those How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement where utility lines enter the house through the walls or floor. Sealants that can be applied to outside walls include cement- and asphalt-based coatings and clear coatings such as epoxies and polyurethanes.
Cement- and asphalt-based coatings are often the most effective, but they can drastically change the appearance of the wall (see Figure 7-7). For example, How To Get Rid Of Water In My Basement the aesthetic advantage of a brick wall is lost when these coating are used. Clear coatings do not change the appearance of the wall but are less effective.

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