Exterior Foundation Waterproofing
Essentially, an exterior foundation waterproofing membrane is a waterproof barrier for below ground application to your foundation. A membrane can be sprayed or installed in sheets to the foundation.
Why Foundations Crack
Anytime you core through the wall for installation of sewer, electric and gas lines, it weakens the concrete, which can result in the foundation cracking. Cracks are also commonly found angling off corners of basement windows. These areas are usually the first place we look when conducting a foundation analysis.
In simple terms, soil saturation = wet ground. Your basement walls are supported by footings. The footings are at the base of the walls, and hold up your house. When the soil under the footings becomes oversaturated, the footings "settle", causing the walls to crack. Oversaturation can also cause the earth next to your foundation to expand in volume. Many foundations aren't built to withstand that extra pressure. The excess weight of the soil can force the walls to push inward. This is identified by diagonal cracks coming off corners. The leading causes for oversaturation are improper grading, bad gutters or the need for underground sump pump and downspout extensions.
On the other hand, not enough moisture in the soil can also cause foundation cracks. When the soil is desiccated, in other words, when moisture is drawn from the soil, usually as the result of a drought, the soil itself will shrink and cause foundation walls to shift outward and footings to settle. Such soil desiccation occurs when trees, shrubs and other plantings near the foundation send root systems deeper into the ground in search of moisture, drawing it from the soil in areas that normally remain untouched.
The science of pouring concrete involves many factors and variables. Since water is used when concrete is mixed, there is an inherent expansion and subsequent contraction of the concrete when it dries. Many factors can affect the drying process, including the type of aggregate, mix of the concrete and humidity levels.