Basement and Crawl Space Waterproofing in York
If you want to keep your York home dry and safe, it is important to take care of the very lowest levels of the property. The area in and around York primarily has rocky soil, with limestone and schist. The load-bearing capacity of this soil is great, and it drains well. However, York receives 42 inches of rain each year, which is above the national average, which means you need to keep an eye on how your crawl space or basement is fairing against dampness, moisture, and humidity. This is partly to do with their placement, but also to do with their age, and the porous nature of concrete as a building material. Many older homes were not fully waterproofed when they were built.
We at Baker’s Waterproofing specialize in protecting homes of all ages from dampness, humidity, and flooding. For more than four decades, we have built a team of specialists and a portfolio of products that are durable enough to stand the test of time and flexible enough to be deployed in any York home. Better yet, the products we stock can be used in conjunction with many other waterproofing measures.
From interior drainage systems and sump pumps that remove water from your York property swiftly, to vapor barriers that prevent it from entering in the first place, we have a range of proactive and passive measures to protect your home. We also offer energy efficient dehumidifiers that can remove moisture from the air and make your home environment far more comfortable to be in.
Foundation Repair in York
The winters are bitterly cold in York, PA, and the summers are often humid. Keeping your property’s foundation healthy can feel like an uphill struggle in these conditions, since the wet and often wild fall season can also overwhelm the limestone soil, causing even the most stable and well-drained landscape to shift and be washed away. When this happens, your York property’s foundation can start to move, sink, or crack and fragment. This kind of movement is not only bad for your foundation but can damage your home as a whole very easily.
From uneven flooring to bowing walls in your York home, foundation damage can lead to a number of other issues which, in turn, increase the risk of structural collapses significantly. The team here at Baker’s Waterproofing is adept at lifting, stabilizing, and repairing structural problems of all kinds. We have curated a portfolio of repair products that are flexible and budget-friendly, while still maintaining effectiveness and durability.
For homes that are sinking or dealing with settlement, foundation piers are our most commonly deployed solution. For homes that have bowing or leaning walls, we recommend wall anchors, wall beams, or, in specialized cases, carbon fiber reinforcement. Whatever is going wrong in your York property, our team can identify the underlying causes, fix them, and bring your home back to full health in no time at all.
York Concrete Lifting
Just as soil movement can impact your York home and its foundation, your property’s exterior concrete surfaces can also begin to move, sink, or fragment when the soil that they rely on is unstable or excessively saturated. This can manifest in a number of ways, including cracking, lateral movement, fragmentation, and sinking. While a little bit of movement and cracking in your sidewalk or driveway may not seem like a huge issue, it really could be!
Even a small amount of unevenness in your exterior concrete surfaces can present a real and serious tripping hazard for everyone on your York property. This will impact those who are already vulnerable most of all. An uneven or sinking driveway can also impact your car over time, as well as your property value. Because of the mineral-heavy nature of York’s schist soil, once soil wash-out has caused it to become uneven, it can be incredibly difficult to fix it afterward – that is, without professional help.
There are a number of solutions on the market for those who want to lift their concrete surfaces back into place and restore their appearance. The team here at Baker’s Waterproofing has the training, skills, and tools that they need to restore your sidewalks and driveway. We favor SettleStop PolyRenewal™ polyurethane foam when lifting sunken concrete as it is lightweight, fast-curing, and inert, meaning that it won’t have an impact on the health of your yard, and it won’t disrupt your ability to use the driveway or sidewalk on your York property for too long.
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About Waterproofing, Crawl Spaces & Foundation Repair in York County
Humidity is a natural part of life, especially during Pennsylvania summers when the heat can be muggy and sticky in nature. There are certain levels of humidity that are considered dangerous because they are conducive to the growth of certain bacterial and fungal spores, as well as being likely to cause cosmetic damage on their own. Knowing when your home is too humid, however, can be difficult to the untrained eye. A few signs can help tip you off.
The most obvious sign of dangerously high levels of humidity in a York home is the presence of condensation. Even this issue is not straightforward in every sense. There are some areas of your home that are likely to see condensation on a regular basis. The kitchen and bathroom in any home, for example, is likely to see condensation as a result of day-to-day use. If, however, you find condensation on the windows of rooms that have no plumbing in appliances, or you find condensation on the walls of your home, this is a sure sign of dangerously high levels of humidity that you should not ignore. There are other, more subtle, signs that you can look out for as well.
Humid air is hard for your property’s HVAC system to process effectively, meaning that it has to work harder to get the same results. This can present itself in a number of ways including unexplained increases in energy consumption and bills, the presence of mold formations, the presence of wood rot, unexplainable musty odors around your home, and corrosion on exposed metal surfaces, pipes, and components. If you feel that your home may be struggling with high humidity, you should look for potential moisture sources and call a professional for advice and assistance.
High levels of humidity or the presence of standing water in your York home can cause many different issues, but one of the most common and insidious is the formation of mold and mildew. That’s especially true during York’s humid summers, which follow the spring rains and give mold an ideal environment to form and thrive. Mold has a lot in common with wood rot fungus, when you break it down to the simplest terms. There is one key difference between the two, however: while wood rot fungi are generally not harmful to people (unless ingested), certain species of mold can be actively toxic. Learning to spot the difference between benign forms of mold and potentially lethal ones is not always easy, however.
Thankfully, mold is fairly easy to spot in any home. Mold causes discoloration, changes in texture, and will produce a musty, often sweet smell when it really flourishes. So, if you notice this musty smell, you should check areas of your home that are rarely used and hidden corners in rooms that are often humid (like your kitchen or bathroom). Mold can thrive almost anywhere, but it favors dark, rarely disturbed corners. As for the formations, mold can be white, gray, pink, brown, black, or even green-ish in color.
It is black mold that you should be most concerned about. Many other forms of mold are benign or only mildly damaging, but black mold can be seriously damaging to the health of anyone who has contact with it. Even if the contact is limited, the consequences can include infection, rashes, dizziness, issues breathing, and even fainting or seizures. Of course, those who are already vulnerable are the most at risk of serious and lasting repercussions from mold exposure. So, yes, in many cases mold can be dangerous and, as such, should be dealt with quickly.
Hydrostatic pressure is a natural force that exists around all homes in York and throughout the country. To put it simply, this pressure is created by the weight of the soil and the water that it contains. All homes are designed and built with this in mind, and are very capable at resisting hydrostatic pressure up to a certain point. They have a threshold, in short, and once hydrostatic pressure levels exceed their threshold, damage becomes more and more likely.
Sudden or significant increases in hydrostatic pressure can be caused in a number of ways. In and around York, or Pennsylvania as a whole, this is most likely to occur because of heavy rainfall and storms during the fall. If your area is contending with soil washout, even your limestone soil won’t be able to prevent localized flooding, and properly draining soil may struggle to keep up after a large amount of snow thawing in the spring.
When this happens, structural damage is almost certain (especially if you have a basement). This is because hydrostatic pressure is often applied laterally. Concrete, which is what most properties’ foundation and foundation walls are made from, is a durable material with huge compressive strength, but very little tensile strength. This means that it really cannot bend or flex and, as such, lateral pressure can cause it to crack and buckle. Bowing walls and foundation fragmentation are common outcomes when hydrostatic pressure gets too high.
Bowing walls are a serious problem for any home, and when they start to form, they can have an impact on other parts of the structure (most notably the floors that are connected to them). As such, it is perfectly reasonable to be alarmed if you think that your York home’s walls are beginning to bow. You will recognize the signs of bowing quite easily. Spreading cracks, visible unevenness, and water leaking from cracks are all signs of a wall that has become damaged. If left untreated, bowing walls will collapse.
Thankfully, there are options for stabilizing and straightening bowing walls now. If your walls have deviated very slightly, by two inches or less, you could invest in carbon fiber reinforcement. This process will stabilize your wall, but it cannot straighten it. If you want to straighten a bowing wall, you will need a more robust solution. Wall anchors and wall beams, for example, are two options that can both stabilize and straighten a damaged wall in your home. Each has its own set of benefits and limitations, however, so you should contact a professional to discuss what will be best for your home.
The benefits of wall anchor installation are the fact that they are relatively easy to disguise after installation, the fact that they can be tailored to suit walls of many sizes, and the durability that they offer. The main limitation of wall anchors is their need for exterior space for installation. Wall beams, by contrast, need no exterior space for installation, but they can be hard to disguise after they have been installed. Both, however, can be adjusted over time to straighten a leaning or bowing wall.
Foundation damage of all kinds is very serious, but settlement is arguably one of the most serious and hard to deal with, because it affects the entirety of your property over time. Settlement is a process of fragmentation and sinking that can be caused by a number of issues, most of which begin in the soil. The limestone and shale rich soil that is commonly found around York, PA, is has very good drainage capabilities, but the climate here can be wild and a particularly bad storm can have a serious impact on the soil around and under your home.
The issue most likely to cause foundation settlement is a process called soil washout. This can occur when the soil is saturated over a long period of time, or when serious issues like flooding cause intense and short-lived saturation. Washout can displace soil from under your home and leave large voids or area of loose, unstable soil which fail to provide proper support. Over time, this can lead to your property’s foundation cracking and fragmenting as the unsupported areas begin to break away and fall into the voids beneath them.
This is a serious issue and can lead to cracked and uneven flooring as well as wider structural issues like bowing walls. Here at Baker’s Waterproofing, we can repair a foundation that has suffered from settlement with the installation of foundation piers. These piers are used to lift the damaged sections of foundation back into place and transfer their weight to stable soil far below the surface, thereby preventing the recurrence of settlement at a later time.
A property’s crawl space is generally one of the least pleasant parts of the home. This makes sense; after all, they tend to be dark, cluttered, and cramped (since the average crawl space is three to five feet in height). As such, issues like mold and wood rot tend to have ample time to grow and spread when they take root in these kinds of spaces, because homeowners rarely enter them. Plus, with visibility being generally poor in these kinds of areas, it can be hard to get a good idea of what is going on in your crawl space.
As such, it pays to look for signs of damage within your home at large. If wood rot starts to flourish in your crawl space, it is most likely to impact your property’s flooring, more specifically the joists and supports that support it. There are three kinds of wood rot, and while they look different in many ways, they all have the same effect: they undermine the structural integrity of wood and cause it to lose its strength. This can present itself in many ways in your home, but the most common are instability, unevenness, or bounciness in your flooring.
Once you know what to look for, though, wood rot is fairly easy to see. Look for signs like discoloration, a honeycomb appearance, the presence of a white sheen on the affected wood, or a change in texture that ranges from brittleness to sponginess. Wood that is dealing with brown rot may also take on a cracked appearance that makes it look burnt. If you cannot see these signs inside your home, they may be present inside your crawl space and a great opportunity for an inspection. If you think that this is the case, we recommend that you call a professional for advice and support.
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315 Point Township Drive
Northumberland, PA 17857
Hours of Operation
Monday – Thursday: 7 am – 9 pm
Friday: 7 am – 7 pm
Saturday: 8 am – 8 pm