Frequently Asked Questions

How can I tell if I have too much moisture in my basement?

Basement moisture can be caused by a number of structural problems such as inadequate grading, missing or defective down spouts or gutters or structural cracks. Locke Dry Basements and Foundations can help you identify the causes of basement moisture at your home or business. These signs can include damp spots on floors or walls, peeling paint, mildew or mold, musty odors and warped paneling. If not fixed, these problems can become structural problems as well as health hazards and can also lower the value of your home. Dealing with basement moisture is not only important to the stability of the structure but can affect the health of everyone living in your home. Standing water in a basement will develop mold quickly and that moisture will begin to deteriorate the overall structure.


Can't I fix a crack in my concrete myself? I can get the materials at the big box store.

Homeowners are often tempted to use caulk or hydraulic cement to patch concrete cracks themselves. This is usually just a superficial repair. Although it may be more expensive, it's better to consult a concrete professional to see if a structural excavation repair is recommended. Caulk is superficial and over time water will seep behind the patch, efflorescence will occur and eventually the caulk will peel off exposing an even larger crack. Hydraulic cement doesn’t bond well, also leading to efflorescence and water seepage will dislodge the cement plug. Repairs installed by a professional will give you a better long-term solution.


How does a basement sump pit work to remove water?

A pit, known as a basement sump pit, can be dug at the lowest part of the basement floor to capture and contain any flowing water. A sump pump sits at the bottom of this trench (or beside it) and removes excess water through pipes to a discharge location. When water fills up the sump pit, the sump pump starts up, and pumps water out of the basement. 


What if the power goes out and my sump pump stops working? 

There are sump pump control system alarms available that can help protect your basement from water damage when there is a power failure or primary pump malfunction. These control systems are electronic and have both audible and visual alarms that monitor the operation of your sump pump. When the power goes out and when it comes back on, the alarm will sound. No action is required by the homeowner for most systems.


What causes of sinking concrete or unlevel concrete and what can you do about it?

Concrete sinks because its underlying support, for various reasons can give way. Sunken concrete can lead to structural defects, including failed retaining walls, foundation settling, uneven junctions of concrete, sunken sidewalks, uneven concrete pads, cracked foundations, and bowed basement walls. If left uncorrected, these defects can lead to unwanted water runoff and major structural problems. Slabjacking and mudjacking is often the best solution.