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The Dos and Don’ts of Basement Waterproofing in Toronto 2023

In this blog post, we’ll discuss the most common mistakes that homeowners make when waterproofing their basement walls and how to avoid them. We’ll also dive into the crucial steps you need to follow to ensure your basement stays dry and protected in the long run. From identifying the root cause of water intrusion to choosing the right materials and techniques, we’ve got you covered.
With our comprehensive guide, you’ll be able to make informed decisions and avoid costly mistakes. Don’t let water damage control your basement – take action today and learn the dos and don’ts of waterproofing basement walls.

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Is your basement constantly damp and humid, leaving an unpleasant odour and potential damage to your belongings? You’re not alone. Many Toronto homeowners face the same issue, struggling to find an effective solution for waterproofing their basement walls. Whether you’re planning to finish your basement or just want to protect your home from water damage, it’s crucial to know the dos and don’ts of basement waterproofing.

Waterproofing Basement Walls Toronto: The Essential Dos & Dont's
Waterproofing Basement Walls Toronto: The Essential Dos & Dont's

Understanding the Importance of Waterproofing Basement Walls

Water can cause significant damage and can even threaten the structural integrity of a house. Basements are particularly susceptible to water damage due to their location and construction. Waterproofing basement walls is crucial to avoid potentially costly repairs and to protect your home’s value. In this section, we’ll explore the importance of waterproofing your basement walls and the consequences of neglecting this task.

Understanding the Risks of Water Damage

Water damage is a serious issue that should not be taken lightly. It can result in a number of problems, including:

Mould and mildew growth can lead to health problems such as allergies and respiratory issues.

Unpleasant odours that can be difficult to remove.

Damage to drywall and flooring materials, which can weaken the structure of your home.

Electrical problems due to water getting in contact with electrical outlets or appliances.

Damage to stored items such as furniture and valuables.

Waterproofing basement walls is important for several reasons:

Keeps your basement dry: Waterproofing prevents water from entering your home through the walls, keeping your basement dry and safe from moisture problems.

Prevents mould growth: Mold thrives in damp, humid environments. Waterproofing helps to prevent mould growth by eliminating the moisture that fungi need to flourish.

Protects your investment: A wet basement can significantly reduce the value of your home. By waterproofing your basement walls, you’re protecting your investment and ensuring that your home maintains its value over time.

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Waterproofing the Basement:

When it comes to waterproofing basement walls, there are some common mistakes homeowners make that can lead to costly repairs down the road. Here are some things to avoid:

Not addressing the root cause of the problem: Waterproofing alone won’t do much if the cause of the water infiltration isn’t addressed. Make sure to detect and repair any underlying issues before applying any waterproofing solution.

Using the wrong products: Not all waterproofing products are created equal. Make sure to choose products that are suitable for your specific needs and that are safe for the environment and your family.

Not properly preparing the surface: Before applying any waterproofing solution, the surface must be properly cleaned and prepared to ensure that the waterproofing product adheres properly.

Neglecting maintenance: Waterproofing is not a one-off task. Regular maintenance is necessary to keep your waterproofing system in good condition and to avoid potential problems in the future.

Types of Waterproofing Solutions for Basement Walls

When it comes to waterproofing basement walls, there are a variety of solutions available. In this section, we’ll explore the two most common types of waterproofing solutions: interior and exterior.

1. Interior Waterproofing Solutions

Interior waterproofing solutions, as the name suggests, are applied inside the basement. It includes:

Wet Basement Repair – Repair any leaks or cracks in the basement walls with waterproofing materials.

Interior Drainage Systems – Installing drainage systems, such as a French drain, to redirect water to a sump pump which pumps it outside.

Vapour Barriers – Installing plastic or foil barriers to prevent water from penetrating the walls.

While interior waterproofing solutions can be effective in directing water away from the interior, they don’t always solve the root cause of the problem, which could be exterior water penetration.

2. Exterior Waterproofing Solutions

Exterior waterproofing solutions involve waterproofing the outside of the basement walls. It includes:

Excavation and Water Barrier Installation – Digging a trench along the foundation and applying a waterproof coating and membrane.

Exterior Drainage Systems – Installing drainage systems, usually a French drain, to direct water away from the foundation.

Exterior solutions are usually more effective since it prevents water from penetrating the walls in the first place.

It’s important to note that while both types of waterproofing solutions can be effective, aiming for a permanent fix is preferable. It’s best to consult with a professional waterproofing contractor to assess the best solution for your specific situation.

💡 Key Takeaway: The two most common types of waterproofing solutions for basement walls are interior and exterior solutions. Exterior solutions are usually more effective in preventing water penetration. Always consult with a professional for assessing the best solution for your specific situation.

Dos for Preparing Basement Walls for Waterproofing

Waterproofing your basement is an essential task to protect your home from water damage, mold, and structural issues. However, before you start the waterproofing process, there are some important steps that you should consider to ensure that your basement walls are prepared for waterproofing. Here are three dos for preparing basement walls for waterproofing:

1. Clean the Walls Thoroughly.

 The first step in preparing basement walls for waterproofing is to thoroughly clean the walls. This includes removing any dirt, debris, or loose paint. This is important because it helps the waterproofing material to adhere properly to the walls. So make sure to use a wire brush, scraper, or power washer to remove any loose debris, dirt, and dust. Also, make sure to let the walls dry completely before proceeding.

2. Fill any Cracks.

 The next step is to fill any cracks in the walls. These cracks can occur due to settling, shrinking, or even earthquakes. It’s important to fill these cracks because they can allow water to seep through the walls and cause damage. You can use an epoxy or polyurethane injection or hydraulic cement to fill these cracks. These materials are flexible and can expand and contract with the walls.

3. Apply a Waterproofing Sealer. 

Once the cracks are filled and the walls are clean, you can apply a waterproofing sealer to the walls. This sealer will help to prevent moisture from penetrating the walls. There are various types of waterproofing sealers available on the market, including acrylic, silicate, and silicone-based sealers. The sealer can be applied with a brush or sprayer. Make sure to read and follow the instructions on the sealer container, including the drying time.

💡 Key Takeaway: To prepare your basement walls for waterproofing, make sure to thoroughly clean the walls, fill any cracks, and apply a waterproofing sealer.

Don'ts for Preparing Basement Walls for Waterproofing

When it comes to waterproofing basement walls, it’s important to know what you should and shouldn’t do to ensure a successful project. Unfortunately, there are many mistakes that homeowners make during the preparation process that can compromise the effectiveness of the waterproofing system. In this section, we’ll take a look at the
4 don’ts for preparing basement walls for waterproofing.

1. Don’t ignore foundation cracks.

If you notice cracks in your foundation walls, it’s important to get them repaired before applying any waterproofing products. Ignoring foundation cracks can allow water to seep through and undermine the effectiveness of the waterproofing system. Cracks should be examined and repaired by a professional before any waterproofing products are applied.

2. Don’t skip the cleaning process.

Basement walls should be cleaned thoroughly before waterproofing products are applied. This includes removing any debris, such as dirt, dust, and cobwebs, as well as any existing paint or sealant. Skipping the cleaning process can prevent the waterproofing products from properly adhering to the wall surface, leading to potential leaks in the future.

3. Don’t apply waterproofing products to wet walls.

Moisture on the walls can also compromise the effectiveness of the waterproofing system. Before applying any waterproofing products, make sure the walls are completely dry. If there is any standing water or moisture on the surface, you will need to wait until it has completely evaporated before beginning the waterproofing process.

4. Don’t try to waterproof walls with mould or mildew.

If there is existing mould or mildew on your basement walls, do not use waterproofing products to cover it up. This will only make the problem worse and potentially create health hazards. Before waterproofing, it’s important to address any mould or mildew issues by removing the affected areas and properly cleaning and disinfecting the surface.

💡 Key Takeaway: Preparing basement walls for waterproofing requires careful attention to detail to ensure a successful project. Homeowners should avoid common mistakes such as ignoring foundation cracks, skipping the cleaning process, applying waterproofing products to wet walls, and trying to waterproof walls with mould or mildew.

Application of Waterproofing Solutions on Exterior Basement Walls

Exterior Waterproofing Method - Basement waterproofing Toronto
Exterior Waterproofing Method - Basement waterproofing Toronto

When it comes to waterproofing basement walls, applying waterproofing solutions on exterior basement walls is crucial to prevent water from seeping into the foundation and causing damage. However, there are some dos and don’ts that homeowners should keep in mind when applying waterproofing solutions. Here are some important points to consider:

1. DO clean and prepare the walls thoroughly before applying any waterproofing solution. This includes removing any dirt, debris, or loose materials using a wire brush, and filling in any cracks or gaps in the walls using hydraulic cement.

2. DO apply a primer before applying the waterproofing solution. This will help the solution to bond better with the wall and create a more effective barrier.

3. DO follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the waterproofing solution carefully. This may include the number of coats to apply, the drying time between coats, and the optimal time and temperature for application.

4. DON’T apply a waterproofing solution when temperatures are too high or too low. Extreme temperatures can affect the effectiveness of the solution, so make sure to check the weather forecast before starting the application.

5. DON’T apply a waterproofing solution over an already damaged or deteriorating foundation. This will not only provide a false sense of security, but it can also worsen the problem and lead to even more damage in the long run.

💡 Key Takeaway: When applying waterproofing solutions on exterior basement walls, it’s important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions, apply a primer, and clean and prepare the walls thoroughly. Avoid applying the solution in extreme temperatures and never apply it over an already damaged foundation.

Application of Waterproofing Solutions on Interior Basement Walls

Interior Waterproofing Method - Basement Waterproofing Toronto
Interior Waterproofing Method - Basement Waterproofing Toronto

Basement waterproofing is a crucial task that requires careful planning and execution to protect your home from water damage. When it comes to waterproofing interior basement walls, there are certain dos and don’ts to keep in mind. Here are some tips to ensure the application of waterproofing solutions is done correctly.

1. DO Properly Prepare the Surface. Before applying any of the waterproofing solutions, make sure the surface is clean and free of any dirt, debris, or loose materials. This can be done by using a wire brush or pressure washer to scrub the surface. Also, ensure all cracks or holes are filled before applying any waterproofing solution. Proper surface preparation ensures the effectiveness of the waterproofing solutions applied. 

2. DON’T Use Incompatible Materials. Using incompatible materials can lead to a loss of adhesion and cause the waterproofing solutions to fail. For example, never mix cement-based waterproofing with rubber-based waterproofing solutions. (Key takeaway): Compatibility of the waterproofing materials used is essential for the success of the waterproofing solution. 

3. DO Apply Multiple Layers. Applying multiple layers of waterproofing solution can enhance the effectiveness of the solution and ensure total coverage of the wall surface. This can be done by applying a first layer, allowing it to cure, and then applying subsequent layers. (Key takeaway): Multiple layers of waterproofing solutions ensure a complete seal against moisture. 

4. DON’T Apply Waterproofing Solutions. After Insulation Installation, It is important to apply the waterproofing solution before installing any insulation material. This ensures total coverage of the wall surface and prevents moisture from being trapped between the insulation and the wall. (Key takeaway): Water-proofing solutions should always be applied before insulation installation. 

5. DO Use Proper Safety Gear. When applying waterproofing solutions, always wear proper safety gear such as gloves, a face mask, and protective eyewear. This ensures your safety and minimizes the risk of exposure to harmful chemicals. (Key takeaway): Follow proper safety measures for the application of waterproofing solutions. 

6. DON’T Rush the Drying Process. Allow enough time for the waterproofing solution to dry and cure before finishing the surface with paint or other finishes. Rushing the drying process can lead to cracks, bubbles, and peeling of finishes. 

💡 Key Takeaway: Patience is critical in the drying process of waterproofing solutions. By following these tips, the application of waterproofing solutions on interior basement walls can be done successfully, ensuring your home is protected from moisture.

Maintenance Dos and Don’ts for Waterproofed Basement Walls

When it comes to waterproofing basement walls, there are several important maintenance dos and don’ts to keep in mind to ensure your efforts are not in vain. Here are seven tips to help you achieve long-lasting results:

1. DO: Inspect your basement walls regularly – The first step to maintaining a waterproofed basement is regular inspection. Check your walls for any cracks, leaks or signs of water damage. Catching potential issues early on is essential to preventing major problems in the future.

2. DON’T: Ignore small repairs – Even minor cracks or leaks can lead to major problems if left unaddressed. It’s crucial to repair any small issues as soon as possible to prevent them from becoming more significant down the road.

3. DO: Keep your basement dry – Keeping your basement dry is key to maintaining a waterproofed foundation. Ensure proper ventilation and use a dehumidifier to keep humidity levels in check.

4. DON’T: Overlook proper landscaping – Proper landscaping around your home’s perimeter plays a crucial role in preventing water damage. Ensure the ground slopes away from your foundation and gutters are clear of leaves and debris to prevent water from pooling.

5. DO: Address exterior issues – If you notice water coming in from the outside, it may be due to exterior issues like clogged gutters or improperly sloped landscaping. Addressing these issues can prevent further water damage.

6. DON’T: Cover up the problem – It may be tempting to cover up minor issues with a fresh coat of paint or drywall, but this will not solve the problem and may lead to even more significant damage down the road.

7. DO: Hire a professional – While some minor repairs can be done on your own, it’s always best to hire a professional for more significant waterproofing work. They have the experience and expertise to identify the root cause of the problem and provide long-lasting solutions.

💡 Key Takeaway: Regular inspections, addressing small repairs promptly, proper ventilation and landscaping, addressing exterior issues, avoiding covering up problems and hiring a professional are the key maintenance dos and don’ts for waterproofed basement walls.

Hiring the Right Basement Waterproofing Professional

When it comes to basement waterproofing, hiring the right professional can make all the difference in ensuring that your basement remains dry and protected from moisture. Here are a few dos and don’ts to keep in mind when hiring a basement waterproofing professional:

Do: Research and compare multiple professionals.

Before hiring a basement waterproofing professional, it’s important to research and compares multiple options. Look for professionals who specialize in basement waterproofing and have experience in the field. Check their qualifications, certifications, and memberships in professional organizations. Obtain multiple quotes and compare their pricing, warranties, and guarantees.

Don’t: Choose solely based on price.

While it’s important to obtain multiple quotes, you shouldn’t choose solely based on price. A cheaper option may not provide the same level of quality and expertise as a more expensive one. Make sure to take into consideration the experience, qualifications, and reputation of the professional before making a decision.

Do: Look for customization and flexibility.

Every basement is different, and a one-size-fits-all approach may not be effective. Look for a professional who can customize their approach and provide flexible solutions to meet your specific needs and requirements.

Don’t: Rush through the process.

Basement waterproofing is a complex process that requires careful planning and execution. Rushing through the process can lead to mistakes and overlooked issues, which can result in costly damage and repairs in the future. Make sure to take your time and work with a professional who is willing to take the necessary time and steps to ensure a quality job.

Strong Basements - Toronto Basement Waterproofing Experts!

💡 Key Takeaway: Take your time and do your research when hiring a basement waterproofing professional. Choose someone with experience, qualifications, and flexibility, rather than solely based on price.


If you live in a city, you are most likely familiar with the sound of rainfall hitting the pavement. In the suburbs and rural areas, however, this sound can be quite unfamiliar. That’s because in these areas, rain typically falls through the air and pools on the ground. If your home is located in an area where rainwater seeps through the basement walls, you may be wondering if waterproofing is the right solution. Before you begin any basement waterproofing project, it’s important to learn some of the dos and don’ts of the process. Dos 1. Do your research. Before beginning any waterproofing project, make sure to do your research. This will help you identify the necessary materials and types of equipment, as well as the risks and potential complications associated with the project. 2. Minimize the impact of the work. When waterproofing your basement, take care to minimize the impact on your home.

Waterproofing Basement dos & Don'ts FAQ

Most frequent questions and answers

Some common causes of water seeping through basement walls include gaps or cracks in the foundation wall, poorly sealed joints, and inadequate penetrations for drainage.

If water seeps through your basement walls, you should immediately call a professional waterproofing contractor like Strong Basements. The contractor will be able to inspect the area, identify the source of the leak and provide a proposal for correcting the issue.

– Seal any cracks or gaps around your foundation and framing with caulk or an adhesive. – Apply a water-resistant membrane to the exterior of your foundation. – Apply a waterproofing compound to the exterior of the membrane. – Apply a finish to the waterproofing compound.

One key way you can help prevent water from seeping through your basement walls in the future is by waterproofing them properly.

Are you tired of dealing with a damp and musty basement? Do you fear the damage caused by water seepage? As a homeowner in Toronto, you know the importance of waterproofing your basement walls. But are you aware of the mistakes to avoid and the essential steps to follow?

In this blog post, we’ll provide you with all the information you need to know about basement waterproofing. A damp basement not only affects your home’s structural integrity but can also lead to health hazards by providing a breeding ground for mould and mildew. Therefore, it’s crucial to take preventive measures to keep your basement dry, clean, and safe.

Firstly, let’s discuss the common mistakes homeowners make when waterproofing their basement walls. One of the biggest mistakes people make is opting for a quick fix rather than addressing the root cause of the issue. Simply painting over damp walls or installing a dehumidifier is not enough to solve the problem. Another mistake is not consulting with a professional waterproofing contractor. While you may be able to DIY small tasks, a waterproofing expert will be able to identify the underlying problem and give you a long-term solution that works for you.

Now that you know the mistakes to avoid, let’s look at the crucial steps to follow when waterproofing your basement walls. The first step is identifying the source of the water intrusion. Whether it’s a leak in your foundation, a crack in the wall, or a problem with your gutters, it’s vital to address the root cause. Next, you’ll need to choose the right materials and techniques for your particular situation.


More about Basement Waterproofing in Toronto:

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