Because of their positioning beneath ground level, basements and cellars are often prone to damp as it is generally not possible to install a damp proof course below the water level (or, rather, such a course would be redundant). This makes them effectively unusable, and a waste of what would otherwise be a useful area, and extension to the property. If you want to take full advantage of your basement space, then it is essential that you get it dry, and keep it dry.
It’s a good question, and the answer is… no, not really. If all you use it for is for storing the odd half-used tin of paint, or as somewhere cool to store the beer and wine at Christmas, then there’s no real need to do anything about it. That said, it’s worth considering what else you could be doing with that basement space: could it serve as a utility room, a study or even a home cinema? Just because it isn’t being used right now, doesn’t mean it couldn’t have its uses in the future.
If you decide to make the most out of your property and have your basement fully waterproofed, there are two main options that you can choose from: a cavity drainage system, or basement tanking.
A cavity drainage system is almost like the reverse of rising damp. Layers of the high-density plastic membrane are laid across the floor and walls of your basement. While the moisture will still penetrate the interior of the cellar, the polyethylene covering acts as an irrigation system, channelling the excess water towards a collection and drainage system, where it is subsequently ejected from the property by means of a pump.
A more popular choice than installing a cavity drainage system is that of tanking the basement. Tanking involves applying a waterproof liquid quoting (commonly referred to as tanking slurry) to the walls and floor of the cellar. Whereas a drainage system allows the water to seep in and looks to eject it, the tanking method makes the walls themselves watertight, preventing the ingress of moisture in the first place.
When you speak us at C&L Preservation about waterproofing your basement, our first job will involve visiting the property, and inspecting the room itself. Once we know the cause and extent of the damp in your basement, we will advise the most effective way to combat it.
Between them, our basement tanking and waterproofing engineers have decades of experience. Whether you need a cavity drainage system in Westcliff, or a basement tanking in Southend, we will provide the ideal solution.