Southern Michigan Waterproofing FAQ

When building or buying a newly constructed home ALWAYS insist that contractor use a waterproofing material on the exterior foundation walls. Although these two products have similar applications, they are VERY DIFFERENT in how they perform. Many contractors continue to use damp-proofing products because once the foundation is backfilled the area is “out of sight, out of mind”, and once the house is finished and sold it becomes the homeowner’s problem if the foundation starts to leak.

The small amount of money you save by not using proper waterproofing when the home is built, can cost you a significant amount of money to fix when water appears in your basement, sometimes as quickly as a year or two after construction.

Damp-proofing products are typically a tar based material cut back with a solvent based product. They are cheap to apply and their effectiveness is extremely limited. The main problem with this type of product is that it becomes brittle once it cures and as the foundation settles and hairline cracks appear, the tar based coating will not stretch to bridge the cracks, allowing moisture to enter the basement. Many homeowners who have problems with a wet basement and dig up the exterior foundation find that these tar based products have started to flake off the wall within just a few years of being applied.

Waterproofing products are designed to “prevent” water penetration even under wet conditions such as hydrostatic pressure in the soil after heavy rain storms or spring thaws. Advanced Waterproofing Technologies products contain rubber and polymers which provides superior waterproofing protection and allows the product to remain flexible even when it dries. This flexibility allows the waterproofing membrane to stretch as the foundation settles and bridge small hairline settlement cracks that can occur in the concrete or block, providing a true seal against water.

Our exterior waterproofing products can be used on residential homes or commercial buildings. They are designed for standard concrete or block foundations, or for use with insulated concrete forms (ICF).

In this type of situation your foundation is under increased attack from hydrostatic pressure so it is very important to do everything you can to alleviate the stress on your foundation walls. The best method for doing this is to install a drainage board such as our WARM-N-DRI foundation board, over the top of the rubber waterproofing membrane, to help improve draining and reduce hydrostatic pressure. Other options include the DRAIN STAR STRIPDRAIN, an effective replacement for traditional drain tile and gravel systems.

Our state of the art waterproofing system is designed to be installed only by certified experts, who can ensure the required coverage and thickness to guarantee a complete waterproof barrier on your home’s foundation. All of our team members have undergone extensive training to help ensure the highest quality protection for your home.

We offer a 30-year warranty against product failure on all of our exterior waterproofing products. Providing the foundation is sound, all tie-holes have been properly filled, and the waterproofing applied to the correct thickness, the membrane will last indefinitely – it will not dry out, crack or peel off the wall. Our products are manufactured with top quality ingredients and you get some of the best products on the market – we wouldn’t offer a 30-year warranty if the products did not perform.

No, you will find that our pricing compares very favorably with other similar quality products on the market, and because our products are not only cost comparable but more robust than other options, you will save more money in the long run. Do not cheap out on keeping your foundation and basement free from water damage and condensation, as you could open yourself to tens of thousands of dollars in damages, repairs and replacements if your waterproofing system fails!

Yes, our products are designed to apply direct to new construction and new foundations. We do not offer services for existing homes or those that need a reapplication of waterproofing barriers. There are several companies in the area that can help you with crack or leaks in the foundation, and will be happy to refer you to one.

If your home is in an area with well-draining soil and you have good quality backfill material, then you can carefully backfill directly against our products. However, if your backfill material contains rocks or stones that could damage the newly applied rubber membrane, then we recommend the use of a product such as our WARM-N-DRI foundation board to help with drainage and insulation against condensation.

Always check with your local building department before backfilling because some municipalities do require the use of protection or insulation boards in addition to waterproofing or damp-proofing products.