Basement Leaks Don’t Stop When The Ground Freezes
It can be easy to imagine that your basement leaking worries will go away when the ground freezes during winter. Solid water doesn’t exactly flow the way liquid water does, so what is there to worry about when the rain turns to snow and soft dirt turns hard as a rock? Why bother worrying about the problem before spring?
Unfortunately, not all of the ground freezes completely solid with the winter weather. Much like how ice forms on top of lakes and rivers while everything below it remains liquid, the ground first freezes on the surface and then moves downwards, and the depth can change depending on how cold the winter gets. In Maryland that depth is typically between one to two feet, depending on your exact location and how severe the winter is, and only in the coldest reaches of Minnesota and North Dakota does the frost reach the floor of the average basement.
In other words, if you’ve got a problem with a basement leak thanks to issues with the local water table, that problem won’t go away when it starts to snow. In fact, it may grow worse thanks to the way water expands and contracts during the freezing and melting cycle, a process which puts pressure on basement walls and foundation slabs and can form cracks and make them expand.
On the plus side, freezing weather does help with two other basement leak culprits: runoff leaks won’t happen so long as rainwater is frozen as snow, and the dry air of winter will slow down the rate of condensation. However, all that snow will eventually melt and leak into your basement if you don’t do something before spring, and condensation will eventually grow worse again when the air warms up.
Fortunately, the fact that only a foot or two of the ground freezes during winter means that most basement waterproofing and repair work can take place before the melting snows and driving rains of spring. If you live in or near the state of Maryland and you have a leak in your basement, then get a stitch in time and contact AA Action Waterproofing for a free initial estimate. The longer you wait, the costlier the repair will be, so ignore the frozen weather and act today.