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CostHelper > Home and Garden  > Plumbing & Waterproofing > Basement Waterproofing

Basement Waterproofing Cost


How Much Does Basement Waterproofing Cost?

 
low costLow: Dehumidifier $150-$400average costMedium: Sump Pump $100-$6,000high costHigh: With Excavation $5,000-$15,000+
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Water flows down, which means basements are a prime spot for rain- and snowmelt-related dampness or flooding, and for moisture seepage (through solid masonry or through cracks caused by the house settling). Methods for basement waterproofing range from relatively inexpensive steps which improve drainage, to more extensive projects that could include excavation work. State Farm Insurance describes potential sources[1] of wet basement problems.

Typical costs:

  • Approximately five yards of soil to make the ground slope away from your home runs $40-$150 depending on location and quality of soil. Hiring someone to do this can be another $50-$150 or more depending on what's involved in the project.
  • If you don't have rain gutters on your home, install them. If you have gutters, extend the downspouts. Simple above-ground extensions of 3-25 feet are $10-$50 each. Extending downspouts into underground drainage pipes or a drywell can cost $100-$400 for do-it-yourself materials and $200-$2,000 or more with professional installation.
  • For dampness caused by condensation, a dehumidifier for a typical basement can run $150-$400 but averages $200-$300. Large-capacity, low-maintenance dehumidifiers for extremely damp or large basements start around $800-$1,200.
  • Installing a sump pump runs$100 -$300 for do-it-yourself installation in a typical family home, or $250-$600 for both parts and labor to have a plumber or waterproofing contractor install it for you. Having a contractor install a complete sump system with perimeter drains (also called French drains) that route water to the sump basin averages $2,000-$6,000, but can go as high as $10,000-$15,000.
  • Do-it-yourself costs for repairing and sealing a basement can run $100-$200, which includes painting or spraying the interior basement walls (and/or floor) with a sealant. In extreme cases you might excavate outside a problem basement wall, apply sealer and a moisture barrier to the exterior wall, install exterior footer drains and then backfill the excavated area -- do-it-yourself materials and tools could run $200-$500 or more. Hiring someone to repair and seal your basement interior can run $250-$1,000 or more; if the project also includes outside excavation plus installing a waterproof barrier and footer drains, the total cost starts around $5,000-$10,000, but can run $11,000-$15,000 or more.
Related articles: Bathroom Remodeling, Repairing and Sealing a Basement, Sump Pump, Dehumidifier, Mold Inspection, Mold Remediation

What should be included:
  • Most homes in damp areas are built with some form of basement waterproofing (such as gravel around the foundation to improve drainage) but these may be inadequate or start to fail over the years as the house shifts and settles. A wet or damp basement might be caused by condensation, seepage, leaks or subterranean water. Tape a piece of aluminum foil on a basement wall; wait 24 hours and then check it. Water on the outside of the foil (toward the room) indicates condensation is the problem; water on the inside of the foil (against the wall) indicates seepage. Or lay plastic sheeting on the basement floor for two days; moisture dampening the concrete underneath indicates subterranean water. Better Homes & Gardens provides an overview[2] of symptoms, causes and solutions for typical basement water problems.
  • Most experts recommend improving outside drainage first, to direct water away from your home's foundation and basement. ThisOldHouse.com gives an overview[3] of possible methods for drying out a wet basement.
Additional costs:
  • If you're not sure exactly what needs to be done, you might hire a home inspector who specializes in water problems to make a complete analysis and give specific recommendations. This could run about $150-$250 or more.
Shopping for basement waterproofing:
  • Get estimates from several companies. Be sure you understand exactly how their solution will solve your specific basement water problems. The final written contract should include an evaluation of the problem and how it will be fixed; start and completion dates; a guarantee/warranty; and a clause that there will be no additional work down without your approval and signature. Ask for and check references, and look for any complaints on file with the Better Business Bureau[4] . The BBB warns against[5] waterproofing contractors who ask for large payments in advance or don't provide a written estimate.
  • The National Association of Waterproofing and Structural Repair Contractors lists things to do before[6] calling a contractor, a checklist[7] for hiring a waterproofing contractor and referrals[8] to its members.
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External Resources:
  1.  learningcenter.statefarm.com/residence/maintenance/wet-basement-problems/
  2.  www.bhg.com/home-improvement/maintenance/construction-basics/solving-basement-water-pro...
  3.  www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/article/0,,220912,00.html
  4.  www.bbb.org/us/Consumer-Business-Reviews/
  5.  basementhealthpros.com/
  6.  basementhealthpros.com/
  7.  basementhealthpros.com/
  8.  basementhealthpros.com/
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