Thursday, March 11, 2010

Basement Foundation Cracks

The quickest way to ruin a finished basement is to cover up cracks in the foundation. Not all cracks will leak, but if you have cracks you should investigate them before building walls in front of them. It typically costs around $150 to fix each crack so if you have lots of cracks, it could get very expensive to fix them. But, so is the expense to tear open your wall AFTER finding the leak, dryout or replace carpet, fix the crack and then repair the walls and trim.

Think of the foundation as a fishtank, except the water is on the outside of the tank. Newer houses have a seal proofing that goes on the outside of the foundation, as well as a sealer that covers the spots where the foundation forms were held in place, but if you live anywhere it freezes, your house will expand and contract and move just enough to let water through the fishtank walls.

Under the floor inside and outside of the basement is gravel about 4 inches down. Any water from your yard should drain down to this gravel and go into the earth or into the drain tile that leads to your sump pump.

To help any water that makes it through the foundation go to this gravel, you can drill a row of 5/8 inch holes, through the basement floor, just under that crack, so if the crack leaks in the future, water will flow down the holes into the gravel; instead of into the finished room. Some crack fixing contractors can break up the floor around the foundation walls and install a channel to do this that drains into the drain tile.

If you are lucky enough to think of this before your house is built, a gap can be left with spacers and plywood used as forms, between your basement walls and floor, so the floor does not abut against the foundation, and ANY leaks that ever occur will always drain into the sump pump.

Call for a free estimate if you live in Homer Glen, IL. or in the Chicago area. 708-479-4570 Visit for more information!


  1. Hmm… I read blogs on a similar topic, but i never visited your blog. I added it to favorites and i’ll be your constant reader. utah basement finishing company

  2. It's devastating when your house seems like it's falling apart! I'm going to help my grandma get her foundation fixed. How difficult is it to get the foundation cracks repaired?