Monday, February 1, 2010

Keeping the feet dry

Winter in California does not only stand for overflowing storm drains and Venice-canale-like streets, it is also standing for wet basements. A lot of homes constructed in earlier days did not pay attention to waterproofing the basement or providing for a way to get the water out- Particularly in hillsides, where water frequently trickles down into the soil, passes a rock layer or two and then hits an impermeable barrier on which it then flows- until it hits your basement wall. If there’s no waterproofing and drainage layer in place, the wall will soon soak, cause dampness and efflorescence and make the basement a wet and unpleasant (and even unhealthy) place to be.
The centuries old saying that a house needs a good hat and dry feet is still valid- and so we carefully designed our waterproofing & sub-surface drainage system accordingly.
The photo shows the sticky bituminous membrane, directly applied on the foundation & walls with the drain board in front of it. At the bottom you can see the filter fabric of the “burrito drain”- it contains gravel and a perforated drainage pipe to conduct the water away from the house to keep its feet dry.

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