If you want to know how to stop water from coming up through your basement floor, you’re in the right place. This article has everything you need to know, including why water is coming up through your basement floor, how to prevent it, and how to stop it.

How To Stop Water From Coming Up Through The Basement Floor

The only way to stop water from coming up through the basement floor is by installing a drain tile system to collect rising moisture.
  • Drain tile system – There are two types of drain tile systems: interior, and exterior.
    • Interior drain tile  – An interior drain tile system is placed underneath your basement floor around the perimeter of your foundation walls. This system uses a perforated (filled with holes) pipe laid in a bed of washed stone. This pipe collect and redirects rising groundwater to a sump pit.
    • Exterior drain tile – Just like an interior drain tile, an exterior system uses a perforated pipe laid in a bed of washed stone. But, this system is laid outside your foundation walls. This is beneficial if you don’t want to remove any drywall or concrete in your basement.
water in drain tile trench 2
  • Vapor barrier – A vapor barrier is a thin polyethylene sheet that’s wrapped around your foundation walls. This will prevent moisture from seeping through your basement walls, channeling any water into the drain tile system below.
  • Sump pump – A sump pump is a fixture that sits inside a sump pit. Once water is deposited into the sump pit from the drain tile system, the sump pump will eject it from your home using a discharge line. The discharge line transports water at least 20 feet from your home in order to prevent further water seepage.

Why Is Water Coming Up Through The Basement Floor?

The main reason water is coming up through your basement floor is due to something called hydrostatic pressure. This is when water accumulates in the soil outside your basement walls or floors and pushes against them. Water can weigh around 60 pounds per cubic foot, making it a very heavy force.
The most notable place water enters through is the cove joint. The cove joint is the space between your foundation wall and basement floor. Your slab and wall were poured separately, and that’s why this space exists. The only way to counter water seepage through your cove joint is by installing a drain tile system.
sump pump before installation
7 Ways To Prevent Water Seepage In Your Basement Graphic

How To Prevent Water Coming Up Through The Basement Floor

You can prevent how much water comes up through your basement floor by controlling how much moisture saturates your soil. Here’s how you can do that.
  • Add a French drain to your yard – A French drain is a below-ground pipe that collects water that pools in your yard. These are very useful in preventing water buildup and puddles.
  • Clean and extend your gutters – Gutters should not be pouring water too close to your basement. Otherwise, water will saturate the soil near your walls and floors. By extending your gutters at least 20 feet away from your home, you can stop water buildup. Also, remember to clean your gutters as often as you can to prevent water from pouring over the sides.
  • Grading (sloping) your property away from your home – If rain is draining toward your basement, water could saturate the soil near your walls and slab. You could grade your property yourself, but we recommend calling in an expert.

Is Water Actually Coming Up Through The Basement Floor?

There’s a chance your basement floor might be experiencing “sweating.” Sweating is when condensation sticks to your floors and walls, developing wet spots. This may look like water is coming up through your foundation floor, but it’s actually just the air in your basement. Here’s a simple way you can test whether or not your basement is “sweating.”
  1. Tape aluminum foil over damp spots in your basement.
  2. Wait one day.
  3. If moisture forms on the outside of the foil, water is condensing from the air.
  4. If moisture is forming on the inside of the foil, water is seeping through your basement floor or walls.
Covering your walls with a vapor barrier and installing a dehumidifier can help counter condensation in your basement. The vapor barrier will catch moisture and transfer it to your sump pump, and the dehumidifier will regulate the humidity in your basement. This combination also works great if you have a crawl space foundation instead of a basement.
vapor barrier basement

Who Can Stop Water From Coming Up Through The Basement Floor?

If you’re living in the Greater Chicago area and water is coming up through the basement floor, you should call The Real Seal. Since 2011, we’ve been waterproofing and sealing thousands of basements and crawl spaces. Call today, and we’ll come out and inspect your basement, find out where the water is coming from, and apply the most effective solution. We also offer foundation repair, crawl space repair, concrete leveling, and more.


Austin Werner

Austin Werner is the Owner of The Real Seal LLC, a basement waterproofing and foundation repair company. Austin believes that having a highly trained and happy team is the key to success. This is reflected through hundreds of 5 star customer reviews his company has received online.

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