How Water Enters a Home
When you understand both how homes are built and how water behaves, you'll understand how homes are, unfortunately, built to leak from Day 1. Once you understand the multiple ways water can enter your basement, you'll be able to choose a waterproofing solution that keeps your home dry for the life of the structure. Without this knowledge, you will never have the peace of mind of knowing what waterproofing method will stop all the ways water can enter your basement.
One way water enters your basement is due to the rising water table and saturation zones that increase when rain is absorbed by soil surrounding your home's foundation. Another way is when the exterior French drain clogs and fails. Remember, the drain is designed to carry water away from the exterior walls of your home, so when it fails, a water column builds up around those walls, much like a moat. This water column exerts pressure on the foundation and keeps it wet. This water can enter your home through cracks in your wall and even seep through the foundation walls as if they were a sponge.
Water can also enter your home from under the concrete floor slab, because common construction methods create cracks known as "cold joints." A cold joint is any point where one type of concrete joins against another concrete component that dried at different times when it was poured, such as a floor slab meeting the concrete block, or such as the point where the footing and the floor slab meet.
It's important to choose a waterproofing solution that addresses all of these primary ways water enters your structure, not just one or two of the ways water enters. Otherwise, you might be spending money on a method that is temporary and cannot address the primary ways water enters a below-ground portion of your structure.