GJ MacRae Foundation Repair

The Original Wetbasements Experts – Since 1975

3 Basement Waterproofing Method: Which One Is the Best for You?

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Written and Edited By Gavin MacRae


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Are you tired of dealing with a damp and leaky basement? If so, you’re in the right place. In this article, we will explore the world of basement waterproofing techniques, providing you with valuable insights and practical solutions to keep your basement dry and protected. Whether you’re a homeowner looking to safeguard your investment or someone in need of effective remedies for basement water issues, we’ve got you covered.

When it comes to basements, moisture can be a persistent problem. Leaks and water seepage not only damage your belongings but can also lead to structural issues and mold growth, posing risks to your health and property. That’s why understanding the best waterproofing techniques is crucial in creating a safe and habitable space.

So, let’s dive in and discover the world of basement waterproofing techniques, enabling you to bid farewell to dampness and welcome a dry, secure, and comfortable space in your home.

Why Do We Need A Waterproof Basement?

Having a waterproof basement is more than just a matter of convenience.

It’s a crucial investment you can ever make for your home such that your home stays safe for an extended period. So, before knowing the techniques, you need to understand why basement waterproofing is essential. Don’t worry, it won’t take your time, and it’s worth knowing. Now without any further delay, let’s explore the benefits of having a waterproof, dry basement.

  • Protection from Water Damage: A waterproof basement acts as a barrier against water intrusion. It prevents moisture from seeping through the walls or floor, protecting your belongings from water damage. By keeping your basement dry, you can dodge costly repairs and replacements of furniture, appliances, and other valuable items.
  • Prevention of Mold and Mildew: Moisture is a breeding ground for mold and mildew, posing severe health risks to you and your family. These microorganisms thrive in damp environments and can trigger allergies, respiratory problems, and other health issues. By waterproofing your basement, you create an environment inhospitable to mold and mildew growth, safeguarding the well-being of your loved ones.
  • Increased Living Space: A dry, waterproof basement opens up possibilities for utilizing the space in various ways. Whether you’re looking to create an extra bedroom, a home office, a recreational area, or a storage space, having a basement that remains dry throughout the year allows you to maximize your living space and cater to your specific needs.
  • Enhanced Property Value: A waterproof basement is a treasure when it comes to selling your home. Potential buyers are often concerned about the basement’s condition, as water issues can be a red flag. Investing in waterproofing increases the appeal and value of your property, making it more satisfying to potential buyers and potentially commanding a higher selling price.

In summary, a waterproof, dry basement provides protection against water damage, prevents mold and mildew growth, offers additional living space, and enhances the overall value of your property. It’s a worthwhile investment that ensures the longevity and safety of your home while providing you with a comfortable and usable space.

Interior Basement Waterproofing

In case you have water intrusion and moisture problems within the basement, Interior basement waterproofing is best and highly effective. Unlike exterior waterproofing methods that involve excavating around the foundation, interior waterproofing focuses on managing water that has already entered the basement or is likely to enter.

One of the primary features of interior basement waterproofing is installing a drainage system along the interior perimeter of the basement. This system collects water that enters the basement and directs it away from the foundation, preventing it from causing damage. Typically, a trench is dug along the interior walls, and a perforated pipe is placed within the trench. This pipe is then covered with gravel or a special drainage material to facilitate water flow.

Besides the drainage system, interior waterproofing may also involve the application of sealants or coatings to the basement walls and floors. These sealants create a barrier against moisture, preventing water from seeping through the porous surfaces. They can also help to lower the risk of mold and mildew growth.

It’s important to note that interior basement waterproofing is highly effective in managing water that has already entered the basement. However, it does not address the underlying causes of water intrusion, such as external drainage issues. Therefore, combining interior waterproofing with other techniques, such as exterior waterproofing or proper grading around the foundation, is often recommended for comprehensive protection against basement water problems.

Process of Interior Basement Waterproofing

Here are the steps involved in the process of interior basement waterproofing:

  1. Initial inspection and assessment
  2. Preparation of the work area
  3. Excavation (if necessary)
  4. Foundation crack repair
  5. Installation of a perimeter drainage system
  6. Installation of a sump pump system
  7. Application of waterproofing coatings or membranes
  8. Installation of a vapor barrier
  9. Backfilling and regrading (if necessary)
  10. Cleanup and restoration

Pros of Interior Basement Waterproofing

There are many benefits of interior basement waterproofing; our experts have listed them below.

  • Cost-effective compared to exterior waterproofing methods
  • Less disruptive to landscaping and structures outside the basement
  • It can be applied to finished basements without significant renovations
  • It helps prevent moisture-related issues such as mold and mildew growth
  • It provides a barrier against water intrusion and protects foundation walls
  • Reduces the risk of basement flooding and water damage
  • Improves indoor air quality by preventing musty odors
  • Increases the usable space in the basement
  • Offers a customizable solution based on specific basement needs
  • It can be combined with exterior waterproofing methods for enhanced protection.

Cons of Interior Basement Waterproofing

Like everything else, Interior basement waterproofing does have drawbacks. Here are some cons which we have listed out.

  • It does not address the root cause of water intrusion from the outside
  • Requires ongoing maintenance to ensure the system functions properly
  • It may not be suitable for severe water infiltration or structural issues
  • This can lead to the buildup of hydrostatic pressure if not properly installed
  • This may require the removal and replacement of existing finishes in the basement
  • It does not protect against water seepage through the foundation walls
  • Potential for the development of hidden leaks or undetected water damage
  • Limited effectiveness in preventing exterior moisture-related issues
  • Relies on electricity for the operation of sump pumps and drainage systems
  • Does not address potential structural problems in the foundation.

Exterior Basement Waterproofing

Exterior basement waterproofing is the superhero of basement protection, fighting off water infiltration and safeguarding your foundation walls like a stalwart shield. Unlike its interior counterpart, which tackles water once inside, exterior waterproofing takes a proactive approach, stopping water in its tracks before reaching your basement. Imagine when a team of experts embarks on a mission to save your basement. They begin by excavating the soil around your foundation walls, unveiling the hidden secrets. Every nook and cranny is inspected with eagle-eyed precision, identifying cracks, gaps, or weakened areas. It’s a thorough investigation that leaves no stone unturned.

Next comes the crucial defense mechanism. A waterproof membrane or coating is carefully applied to the exterior surface of your foundation walls. But that’s not all. They go the extra mile to install a formidable drainage system alongside your foundation walls. The installation of French drains with dry wells or exterior weeping tiles spring into action, intercepting water and directing it away from your basement like a swift diversion. It’s a masterstroke that keeps moisture at bay.

The features of exterior basement waterproofing are nothing short of awe-inspiring. It defeats the menacing hydrostatic pressure, the force of groundwater that threatens your foundation’s integrity. With its waterproof membrane and drainage system, it proudly declares, “Not on my watch!”. While durability is its middle name. This technique stands the test of time, providing long-lasting protection for your foundation walls. No compromises here. It’s a solid defense that endures. By keeping water out, exterior waterproofing prevents potential harm from relentless moisture. It’s a safeguard for the very foundations of your home.

Process of Exterior Basement Waterproofing

Note that while these steps provide an all-around outline of the process. It is critical to consult with an expert waterproofing contractor for a detailed assessment and personalized approach based on your specific basement and foundation needs. Now, let’s check out some of the steps involved in the process of exterior basement waterproofing:

  • Initial inspection and assessment
  • Excavation of the soil around the foundation walls
  • Cleaning and preparation of the foundation walls
  • Repairing any cracks or damaged areas
  • Application of a waterproof membrane or coating to the exterior surface
  • Installation of a drainage system alongside the foundation walls (French drains or exterior weeping tiles)
  • Backfilling of the excavated area
  • Restoration of landscaping and structures

Pros of Exterior Basement Waterproofing

Our experts have listed out some of the advantages of exterior basement waterproofing. Let’s know why you should waterproof your basement.

  • Helps to address the root cause of water infiltration
  • It provides comprehensive protection for foundation walls
  • It prevents structural damage caused by water
  • Offers long-lasting and durable waterproofing solution
  • Reduces the risk of basement flooding and water damage
  • Preserves the integrity of the entire foundation
  • Provides effective defense against hydrostatic pressure
  • It also reduce the risk of mold and mildew growth
  • Enhances the overall value of the property
  • It can be combined with interior waterproofing methods for added protection

Cons of Exterior Basement Waterproofing

Well, Interior waterproofing does have drawbacks even though it is one of the popular techniques. Here are some of the cons listed by our experts.

  • Compared to interior waterproofing, the Exterior waterproofing method is quite expensive.
  • It may require permits and compliance with local regulations.
  • It is worth mentioning that it can damage existing structures during excavation.
  • Weather-dependent processes may be impacted by inclement weather conditions.
  • It may require temporary relocation during the waterproofing process.
  • Exterior waterproofing takes a long time compared to Interior waterproofing.
  • Limited accessibility for finished basements or structures close to property boundaries
  • Potential for damage to underground utilities during excavation
  • Additional costs for restoring landscaping and structures after the waterproofing process.

Foundation Crack Injection

Foundation crack injection is a highly effective basement waterproofing technique used to repair cracks in foundation walls and prevent water intrusion. It is a specialized process that involves injecting a sealant into the cracks, effectively sealing them, and creating a watertight barrier. It can be performed on interior and exterior foundation walls, depending on the accessibility and severity of the cracks. The process begins with thoroughly inspecting the damages to assess their size, location, and potential causes. This helps determine the most appropriate sealant material and injection method.

Let’s start with how it provides a long-lasting solution to address the source of the problem. By sealing those cracks with precision, it puts an end to water intrusion once and for all. No more sneaky leaks or unwanted dampness. It’s a safeguard that protects your foundation from potential damage and keeps it tall.

But the best part is it’s a non-disruptive method. No need for heavy machinery or chaotic excavation. It gracefully glides in, injecting the cracks with its sealant solution, and leaves without a trace. Your home remains intact, without the mess and fuss. Besides, foundation crack injection is a master of customization. It understands that every crack is unique and requires a tailored approach. With an array of sealant materials and injection techniques, it adapts to the size and nature of each gap, sealing them up tight. It’s a chameleon that blends seamlessly into your foundation’s needs.

Process of Applying Foundation Crack Injection

Do you want to fix those unsightly cracks in your foundation walls? Well, then follow these easy steps to inject a durable and waterproof sealant that will make your home look good as new.

  • Initial inspection and assessment of the cracks
  • Preparation of the crack surfaces
  • Selection of appropriate sealant material
  • Setup of injection equipment
  • Injection of sealant into the cracks
  • Monitoring and control of the injection process
  • Curing and setting of the sealant
  • Cleanup and removal of excess sealant
  • Verification of crack sealing effectiveness

Pros of Foundation Crack Injection

You won’t regret choosing foundation crack injections for your home improvement project. Here are some of the benefits you’ll enjoy:

  • It provides a long-lasting solution.
  • It prevents further water intrusion.
  • Protects the foundation from potential damage.
  • One of the best Non-disruptive methods.
  • You can customize for different crack sizes and types.
  • Cost-effective compared to extensive waterproofing methods
  • Quick and efficient application
  • Minimizes the need for excavation or structural modifications
  • Improves structural integrity
  • It can be combined with other waterproofing techniques for enhanced protection

Cons of Foundation Crack Injection

Here are some cons of foundation crack injection which you should know about.

  • Limited effectiveness for larger cracks
  • Potential for future damages to develop
  • Temporary solution for underlying structural issues
  • Requires professional expertise and equipment
  • Costly compared to other repair methods
  • Disruption to the property during the repair process
  • Potential for cosmetic imperfections after injection
  • Limited warranty on injected repairs
  • It may not address underlying water infiltration issues.

Which Basement Waterproofing Technique is Best For You?

We explored the world of basement waterproofing techniques. From interior waterproofing to exterior solutions and foundation crack injection, we uncovered their pros and cons. A waterproof basement not only protects your belongings but also enhances your property’s value and provides a healthy living environment. So, which technique is best for you? It’s time to take action and seek expert consultation. Don’t let your basement remain a damp problem. Reach out to GJ MacRae, the basement waterproofing expert in Greater Toronto Area, to transform your basement into a dry and secure space. Your home deserves the best waterproofing company. Contact us now

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best liquid waterproofing membrane for the basement wall?

A liquid waterproofing membrane involves applying a thin layer of material, such as liquid, bitumen, or polymer-modified thick film, to the surface of the basement wall to create a water-resistant barrier.

Can you do 3 coats of waterproofing?

The number of coats of waterproofing required depends on the type and quality of the membrane, the application method, and the manufacturer’s instructions. Some membranes may require only one coat, while others may need two or more coats to achieve the desired level of protection and thickness. Usually, following the manufacturer’s recommendations and specifications is advisable for the best results. Applying too many or too few waterproofing coats could affect the membrane’s performance and durability.

What are the pros and cons of waterproofing membranes?


  • It can cover a large area and conform to different shapes and angles
  • It can protect the surface from water, chemicals, corrosion, and abrasion
  • It can be applied to various materials, such as concrete, metal, wood, and fabric


  • It can be expensive and labor-intensive to install
  • It can be damaged by UV rays, temperature changes, or mechanical stress
  • It can be challenging to repair or replace if it fails

Gavin MacRae is a professional foundation repair and basement waterproofing expert with over 20 years of experience in the field. He has extensive knowledge about foundation issues such as settlement, and cracks as well as expertise in repair techniques. Gavin is also highly skilled in basement waterproofing using interior and exterior methods. He has worked with hundreds of homeowners to provide permanent solutions to foundation and basement problems.