There are many different ways in which you can identify a sign that your basement is leaky or damp. It is important to keep your eye out for possible points of entry, and for damage being caused by water entering your home. One of the signs of a basement leak, is efflorescence.
Efflorescence is a white chalky substance that can sometimes be seen on walls, and may look like little whiskers. It is actually salt deposits, which are dissolved and carried by water, and then left on the concrete or brick when the water dissolves. The salts usually come from within the building materials themselves, such as the calcium from concrete.
Efflorescence is white salty substance that can appear on exterior or interior walls, especially in damp conditions. It is usually close to the bottom of the walls, near the floor, and can be in large areas.
This can be a real eyesore, but can also be a problem too. The efflorescence can occur on the inside of the walls, and over time can cause spalling, which is where the walls peel and flake off on the surface.
Efflorescence is also a sure sign of damp in your foundation walls, and this could suggest some sort of leak or problem with your basement waterproofing, especially if it is on the inside walls. The salt needs a certain amount of moisture in order to dissolve and be deposited as efflorescence, and so your walls have to be pretty wet for this to happen.
Building materials such as concrete, masonry, brick, and mortar, can contain salts and minerals. When a lot of water gets into the materials, the salts can be dissolved, and then are carried by the water towards the surface of the brick. When the water reaches the surface, the water dissolves, and leaves deposits of salt.
In order for efflorescence to occur, there must be enough salts in the building materials, and there must be enough moisture to cause the salts to dissolve. Therefore, an interior wall with efflorescence is a sure sign of a leaky or damp basement, and even efflorescence on exterior walls can be a sign of trouble.
It is possible to remove the efflorescence using a sandblaster, stiff brush, or a product or solution. However, this isn’t really the point, and will only solve the aesthetic problem. The real problem is the damp that has made it possible, and this is what you must rid yourself of if you want to make sure the efflorescence never returns, and that your basement remains dry and cosy.
Direct Waterproofing offer a full range of basement waterproofing solutions in order to tackle any problem. We can make sure water doesn’t find its way into your foundation walls, preventing efflorescence as well as any water damage. You can choose from interior and exterior waterproofing solutions, all with a 25 year warranty.