Sticking Door Repair: Is It Really the Door?

When you leave for work in the morning, do you notice that the doors and windows are sticking and will not open right? You might wonder what’s wrong. Is it the wood expanding? It might be. However, it might be a foundation problem that is causing the door or window to be pushed up higher than it should be, which makes it “stick” when you go to open or close it. It might be time to consider sticking door repair or sticking window repair.

sticking window repairWhat are symptoms of a sticking window or sticking door?

The main symptoms you will see with this problem are that the door or window appears to be difficult to open or close. You may also notice that the door does not fit within the frame perfectly, or hits on the top. The frame may also be raised below it or pulling away from the sub-floor. With windows, this issue may present as the the window not being able to shut all the way or not fitting correctly in its frame. it's also prudent to look for cracks around the wall by the door or window. You can also take a look at your foundation in the area below the problem window or door. However, if you don't feel comfortable doing so--always feel free to give us a call and we can come inspect your property for you.

What causes sticking doors and windows in spring?

Over the winter months, the ground will freeze and thaw continually. It’s a natural process, but it can wreak some havoc on your foundation if it’s not prepared. Water will gather in the soil beside the foundation and freeze. It will then push against the foundation in unusual ways which cause cracks and buckling. It can also go beneath the foundation and raise and lower it, with the freezing and thawing. This is called frost heave, and it can cause your windows and doors to stick.

sticking window repairWhat to do for sticking door repair? Sticking window repair?

The issue may not necessarily be the sticking door or window. Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry will first check your foundation to see if there are any underlying problems. If there aren’t, we can move on to correcting what may be an issue with the sub-floor or the door itself. If there is a foundation issue, there are several options depending on what the issue is. If there are cracks in the wall, a bowing wall, or other issues, there will be different solutions to each. Most of these will involve foundation underpinning or carbon fiber strips to support the wall. The best news is that a problem which could’ve caused safety and stability concerned was addressed and your home will be safe once more. Give Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry a call today to find out what options you have for sticking door repair or sticking window repair. We are happy to provide a free estimate and get your home back to being safe and comfortable again.

Solve Waterproofing Problems with Interior Drainage and Exterior Drainage

Have you been struggling with waterproofing problems for years on end now? It doesn’t seem to matter what you do, the water just keeps coming back? Have you tried crawl space encapsulation methods only for them to fail? If your outlook is glum for basement waterproofing, it’s time to look at the full waterproofing package: interior drainage and exterior drainage. A complete package of waterproofing on the interior and exterior along with an inspection of your foundation for cracks will provide you with peace of mind and a dry basement.

Foundation Cracks

Before anything else, you need to get your foundation inspected for any cracks or damage that may be the root cause of your water problems. These cracks can let in water, moisture, and even pests. They can also cause instability in your foundation which could lead to eventual bowing walls and collapse. Your foundation is never something to mess around with or try DIY solutions--you should always call a professional, like Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry, for their expert advice and assistance. Fixing foundation cracks may fix all of your problems. Always have your foundation inspected first thing if you have persistent waterproofing problems.

crawl space sealedInterior Drainage and Waterproofing

Interior waterproofing is probably the most familiar type of waterproofing for most people because that’s usually the first option. A sump pump, crawl space encapsulation, etc. These are all methods that can be used for interior waterproofing in your home. Crawl space encapsulation is one of the best methods to keep out water and moisture because there is a layer between your home and the soil. However, if the land your home is sitting on is not graded correctly, there might be problems with water pooling in lower areas of your basement or crawl space. We can work with this by correcting the grading issue and installing a sump pump system for added security and assurance that if any water does enter your basement or crawl space, you will not have to deal with it. Interior waterproofing is necessary, in most all cases, to make sure that no water is in your basement or crawl space, but many waterproofing companies won’t go the extra mile to assure you that your waterproofing woes are behind you. Interior drainage systems, like sump pumps, are not waterproofing. They are a security system in case water does end up entering your basement through some means (usually cracks in the walls). Exterior drainage systems need to be considered as well when you have persistent waterproofing problems.

exterior drainage systemExterior Drainage Systems

Exterior drainage systems can include grading the yard so that soil is higher near the home and lower away from the home. This assures that water that drains from gutters, which should have downspouts at least five feet away from the side of the home, and other sources will not cause water to soak into the soil directly above or beside your foundation. This water can cause hydrostatic pressure on the side of the foundation or it can enter through any cracks that you may have. Neither of these is a good option for your basement or crawl space. Another option is a drain system in your yard. If your yard is persistently collecting water and becoming a swamp every time it rains, there are some steps that you can take to prevent it and to prevent it from affecting your foundation. We can advise you on the best drainage system for your yard that will be most effective at taking water away from your home and redirecting it to other areas so that your yard and your foundation are not constantly covered in water.

Dual Approach Waterproofing Outcomes

This type of dual waterproofing and drainage system approach, along with a prior inspection and fix of any foundation problems, will assure you that your water problems are most likely far behind you. While there can be extenuating circumstances, in most all cases, this dual approach will help you finally get rid of the worry and frustration that comes with water in the basement or crawl space. Give us a call today to get started!

Check Your Home for Foundation Cracks Before Spring

Now that the winter season is over, it’s time to take stock of your home and prepare it for spring. You can do spring cleaning, take a walk around the perimeter of your home and notice any changes, but you can also check your basement or crawl space for foundation cracks. This step may be the most important in your spring home preparation because it could save you from crawl space or basement water damage or even from major foundation damage that will cost a lot of time and money to replace.

crack in cement foundation crack virginiaTypes of Foundation Cracks

Let’s say that you’ve spotted a crack in the foundation of your home, and your heart is beating a little faster because this might cost a lot of money you may not have. First, take a deep breath! Foundation cracks do not always spell trouble. Some foundation cracks are merely due to the normal settling that a foundation does after initial construction. These are usually no larger than the width of the edge of a penny and will not continue to widen or grow. However, there are certain foundation cracks, like ones that are wide, extend from the top to the bottom of the wall, or continue to grow, that can spell trouble for your foundation. There’s also a simple way to monitor these types of foundation cracks.

How to Monitor Foundation Cracks

All you need is a roll of masking or painters tape, a pencil, a ruler, and patience. Put a piece of tape on either side of the crack and use the ruler to draw a line in the same spot on both (across). Now all you need to do is check back regularly and see if the lines have moved. If they have moved, there may be a bigger problem. The best course of action is to call a certified professional, like Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry, to have the problem looked at. Foundation cracks are nothing to wait on--they can make your home unsafe if left unchecked!

Why Check Before Spring?

Even under the best of circumstances, foundation cracks should not be ignored. These cracks can cause unsafe conditions in your home, even leading to eventual collapse of the foundation. While this is a disaster scenario, it could happen if foundation cracks are ignored. Other more likely issues that come with foundation cracks are water seeping in through the cracks, insect problems, and unsightly walls.

steel piers, VA foundation crackFoundation Crack Solutions

Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry uses underpinning products like helical piers and steel push piers. These will help get your foundation back to its original level and structurally sound again. These piers are pushed into the ground through the unstable, shifting soil until they reach a solid soil layer. Then the entire structure is lifted onto these piers. In some cases, as with bowing walls, carbon fiber repair, a less invasive option, can be used to repair inside the home. This can be easily painted over and will be almost invisible. Our foundation repair products are manufactured by Earth Contact Products, a respected leader in the industry. We have over 30 years of experience in masonry, waterproofing and foundation repair at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. With our experience and ECP’s products, you can be assured that your foundation repair will last for many years to come. Contact us for more information and to get started on foundation crack repair in your Virginia home.

Brick Repointing for Your Historic Home Exterior

Many of us in Virginia live in historic homes, and we all know that a unique set of problems and interesting “features” can come with that. While older homes are beautiful and have lots of character, it is important to take special care when repairing and restoring them. This is because different building materials and techniques were used in the past, and it may not be your best bet to mix the two (old and new) for a "franken-house." In particular, brick repointing can be a place where mixing old and new can lead to disastrous results.

brick repointing virginiaWhat is brick repointing?

Brick buildings are constructed using brick and mortar to create a solid structure. Masonry has been used for centuries, but the materials and techniques have changed over time. While bricks and mortar used to be softer and left with spaces to “breathe,” bricks and mortar now are much harder and take less time to set up. This can become a problem when modern masonry workers try to repair historic homes with brick repointing. The pointing of the bricks is the external facing mortar. Time, weathering, and decay will create spaces that can be an entry point for water. If it is not repaired, this can cause major damage to the bricks and the rest of your home. This is where brick repointing comes in. The old mortar is chiseled out and then replaced to create a stronger brick facing with no cracks or spaces. One or more passes will be made with the mortar. We make sure that the new mortar used matches the original mortar as closely as possible. This is important to make sure that they have similar characteristics such as permeability or strength. These are details you can count on from the team at Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry.

brick repointing historic homesHistoric Homes and Brick Repointing

In historic homes, bricks are usually softer and the mortar used is lime-based. This mortar takes longer to set up, and it is not widely used because of stronger solutions currently available. However, this is the best option to use for historic homes with soft bricks and current lime-based mortar. If you have a historic home with previous brick repointing and you are currently having problems with cracks, water leaks, or other issues, it may be caused by a mismatch in the mortar. When the wrong mortar is used to perform brick repointing on historic homes, it can result in disastrous consequences. Modern mortars are very stiff because they are usually used with stiff bricks which have no give. When these mortars are used with historic homes, they do not take into account that the original builders let things “settle” and move with soft bricks and soft mortar. When you place a soft brick with the hard mortar, it can lead to cracks in the walls, gaps, etc. They are simply mismatched. Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry will work to make sure we match your original mortar as closely as possible in permeability and strength. This will assure that your brick repointing job will last for many years to come and not cause any unwanted issues. If you are experiencing problems with past mismatched brick repointing jobs, please contact us at Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry. We are happy to work with you to restore your historic home to its former glory.

Keep Your Basement Dry This Spring

clean guttersIt's been a crazy winter this year with snow, ice, and torrential rainfalls. All of that moisture has to go somewhere once the warm weather returns. The soil will be oversaturated, so the water will take the path of least resistance: cracks and low spots around your foundation.

Prepare Your Property

There are some things you can do now to help prevent your basement from becoming flooded. Take a walk around your property and look for the following things: Are your gutters and downspouts clear and emptying far from your foundation? Make sure that the gutters are not cluttered with debris and are flowing cleanly to the downspouts. The downspouts should empty a minimum of 3 feet, but we prefer it to be around 10 feet from the foundation. If snow or ice is piled up against the foundation, clear it out before it melts. The melting snow and ice will trickle down your foundation walls and could cause all kinds of problems. Check for low spots or sunken concrete around the foundation. Water will naturally pool in low spots, again, running down alongside the foundation walls.

What Water Can Do To Your Home

It only takes a small crack for water to enter your home. If the water enters the crack and freezes, it will expand, making the crack bigger. Water in your basement or crawl space can lead to property damage, mold growth, pest infiltration, and structural damage. Even if water doesn't enter your basement, it can still cause problems. Oversaturated soil can exert a great amount of pressure against the foundation walls. This can cause the walls to crack, bow, lean, or even collapse. It is important that you install a professional waterproofing system, like the ones from Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry.

Waterproofing Options

When our experts come out to your property, we'll inspect it and see what kind of issues your foundation has. We can help shore up walls with wall plates and helical tiebacks, along with lifting your foundation with steel and helical piers. If you need waterproofing services, we can install sump pumps, channeling, and exterior waterproofing systems. We want to keep your home dry and safe. Contact us today to learn more about all the waterproofing options we offer.

Crawl Space Sealing

  seal your crawl spaceWe've written about crawl spaces from time to time, but we're pretty passionate about making sure your home and your family are protected from the dangers of an open crawl space. Over half of the air we breathe in our homes comes from the crawl space underneath. Even with a concrete slab, you still have water, pests, and mold spores in the crawl space, contaminating the air that you breathe. If your crawl space has a dirt floor, it's even worse. As the air rises from the crawl space and fills the rest of your house, it is replaced with air that comes in through open vents and cracks in your foundation. This circulation of air is called a "stack effect" and is what you see when a chimney pulls the smoke up and out of the house, instead of filling the room. So, you can see that whatever is in the air in your crawl space will eventually end up in the air throughout the house. If your crawl space is not sealed, you will be dealing with excess moisture, insects, critters, and more. The dirt floor may even be dusty, but if you dig down a little bit, you'll hit wet earth which is evaporating into the crawl space's air.

Seal Off Your Crawl Space

The only way to manage the humidity level of your crawl space is to seal it off with a vapor barrier. Crawl space encapsulation is one of the best ways to keep water, bugs, and mold out of your home. Don't be tempted to run to the local hardware store and pick up a sheet of vinyl to do it yourself. The sheeting is probably not thick enough and you won't be able to close off every opening in your crawl space. A professional installer, like those at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry, will use professional grade encapsulation material and will make sure to seal off doors, vents, pipes, walls, and more. They're trained and have the right tools, products, and knowledge to do the job right. crawl space sealedKeeping the crawl space dry will prevent musty odors, mold growth, and pest infestations. In addition to possibly making you and your family ill, these problems can also attack the structural integrity of your home or office. They can cause wood to rot and metal parts to rust. Mold and insects may eat the wooden materials holding your house up and animals can tear up the foundation, die, or leave waste material. If the humidity in the crawl space is high, the floor above can weaken, causing problems throughout the house. In addition to the destruction that can occur, your energy bills may rise. Having a drier crawl space can help keep those costs in check. If there is a lot of humidity in your home's air, your air conditioning will have to work harder to cool the house. Studies have shown that you can save 15-25% on your electric bill by taking care of crawl space dampness.

The Right Way to Seal Your Crawl Space

If you want to protect your home and family, make sure your crawl space is sealed and dry with professional crawl space encapsulation by someone like Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. The area should be completely sealed off from the outside air. A thick vinyl sheeting will be installed, covering the floors and walls. The thickness of the sheeting will allow people to walk on it to service equipment, store items, and install a dehumidifier. You can find out more information at this website put together by the Department of Energy, Dominion Power, and Advanced Energy. Let Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry make sure your home is dry and safe. We care about your family and your home.

Protect Your Home By Winterizing

winterize your homeIt seems like taking care of your home is a never-ending process, but it is very important that you have your home ready for the winter months. It's been a pretty mild summer and fall, but we all know that can change in the blink of an eye. Winter can be long with harsh temperatures, big snowfalls, and other miserable weather and it's time to get to winterizing.

Take Care of the Outside

While the weather is still relatively nice, make sure the outside of your home is ready for Old Man Winter. This is a good time to clear your gutters and downspouts of leaves, frisbees, and other things that may clog them. If your gutters are clogged, melting snow won't properly drain and could run down alongside your foundation walls. This can cause damage to the foundation, in addition to potential flooding of your basement or crawl space. Clear leaves and debris from around the outside walls of your home. These leaves can trap water and snow against your foundation, which can lead to cracks or worse. If you have outdoor faucets, make sure that hoses are removed and that either the water is shut off to the faucet or you have a spigot that is frost-proof. If an outdoor faucet freezes, the split can occur inside your home, flooding your basement or wherever the pipe breaks. Once you have the outside ready for the winter chill, you can concentrate on the inside of your home.

Take Care of the Inside

Your home is probably nice and cozy in the winter, but there are things you can do to make it better and to protect your home from foundation damage. Make sure that your pipes won't freeze. We mentioned above about protecting your pipes attached to outdoor faucets, but your indoor pipes can freeze and burst, also. If pipes are on an outside wall, make sure they are wrapped to keep them insulated. If they are inside cabinets or closets, open the doors during severe cold blasts. A broken pipe is never fun, but dealing with it during below freezing temperatures is no picnic. Your home is your castle, but it doesn't need to feel like a drafty, medieval home. Caulk around windows and apply weatherstripping around doors and windows. Also, make sure that cold air isn't coming through electrical outlets. There are a variety of DIY products that will keep cold air where it belongs. You can also check with your local power company to see if they can perform an energy saving audit. They will inspect your home and give you a list of ways that you weatherproof your home and lower your energy bills. They may suggest new insulation, programmable thermostats, new windows or weatherstripping. Spending a little money and time now will save you a lot of money down the road and may protect your home from damage due to cold weather. House in Winter

Spend a Little, Save a Lot

Foundation repairs can be expensive, so take some time and effort to protect your home now. Freezing water outside of your home in the soil can cause cracks in your foundation walls or can even cause them to bow or lean. Melting snow can enter cracks in your foundation walls. If the water refreezes, it can cause the cracks to expand, causing more problems. There are many solutions for foundation damage, give the experts at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry a call and we'll help you make sure your home is stable and safe all year round.

What to Know: Buying or Selling a Home with a Wet Basement

selling home with basement water, buying home with basement waterWet basements are a troublesome issue for any homeowner. Basement flooding and puddles in the basement can cause water damage and can ruin furniture, drywall, and any personal possessions that you might be storing in your basement. Even small amounts of moisture in your basement can cause mold and mildew to grow and can cause other problems in your basement. A damp basement might lead to wood rot and metal rust that can compromise the structural integrity of your home.

Buying a Home With Basement Water Issues

When searching for a home to buy, the last thing that you want to see is a wet basement. Wet basements are a pain to deal with and might even be signs of a foundation problem. However, water in the basement of the home that you are considering purchasing might actually be a plus. Why? Because wet basements give you a chance to negotiate a lower price. The seller knows that homes with wet basements are harder to sell because they are less attractive to potential buyers. If they have already been having a hard time selling the house, they will likely be open to selling it for less. Homes with wet basements often see a 10-25% decrease in value while on the market. That can be a great advantage for the home buyer. Why should you consider buying the bargain home with the wet basement? A lot of homes in the current market, up to 40%, have some sort of serious issue. In other words, yobuying a home with a wet basementu are probably not going to find a perfect home. Common problems in homes include:
  • Foundation cracks or movement
  • Asbestos in walls or floors
  • Defective roofing that leaks
  • Lead paint on walls
  • Wet basement or basement leaks
Out of these issues, the wet basement is the easiest to fix. It only takes a day or two for a professional waterproofing crew like the ones at Reliable Waterproofing &Masonry to install a sump pump and interior drainage system. Our team also offers exterior waterproofing for added protection against basement water leakage. Proper waterproofing, a small expense compared to the benefit, can even increase the value of your new home by 400% or more. The best way to approach buying a home with a wet basement is to make it clear that you are willing to buy the home, but that you want to do so at a lower price due to the basement water issues. Once you have purchased the home, invest in waterproofing with a professional, trustworthy waterproofing company to avoid any damage to your property and keep water problems from reoccurring.

Selling a Home That has a Wet Basement

selling a home with a wet basementIf you are the one selling the home with the basement water issue, the best course of action is to get the problem fixed as soon as possible. Proper waterproofing will raise the value of your home immensely and will make it even more appealing to potential buyers. This might involve putting in an exterior waterproofing system to prevent water from seeping through the foundation or forming puddles in the yard around your home. It might involve putting in an interior drainage system that collects basement water and expels it using a sump pump system. Whichever waterproofing option that you choose, Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry can help. With proper waterproofing, you might even be able to reconsider selling your home. If your goal in selling your home is to get more usable living space, waterproofing and finishing your basement might be a more appealing option. This option can provide you with the added space you need while saving you the time, money, and stress of moving to a new home. In addition to giving you valuable extra living space, finished basements raise the value of your home, making it easier to sell if that is the route you choose. Finishing your basement is also a less expensive alternative to adding on.

Tips on Waterproofing and Finishing Wet Basements

However, when finishing your basement it is important to start out right. First, you want to make sure that the basement is properly waterproofed. If water seeps into your finished basement, it will likely ruin all of the hard work that you have done. Basement water can wreck insulation, drywall, carpeting, and more in finished basements. Exterior waterproofing prevents water from entering the basement, but interior waterproofing is a less expensive option that also keeps water from collecting in your basement. To provide even further protection from basement water issues, invest in a high-quality dehumidifier for your basement, which will reduce the chances of mold growth or wood rot in your basement. You might also consider having a vapor barrier installed if you have a crawlspace, as this will keep moisture vapor out of your home. Whether you are buying or selling a home with basement water issues, you will need professional basement waterproofing at some point. When you get to that point, do not hesitate to call Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry for professional exterior and interior waterproofing.

Best Time to Do Waterproofing in VA

Best Time for Basement Waterproofing and Foundation Repair

Best Time to Do Waterproofing, Waterproofing in VA, Basement Waterproofing in VA, Foundation Repair in RichmondNow that Spring is almost here with rain and thawing snow, many homeowners in Richmond and other parts of Virginia are thinking about whether their basements will remain dry. They may ask the following questions: When is the best time to waterproof a basement? Does it make a difference what the weather is? This article will answer some of those questions about the best time to do waterproofing and foundation repair.

Does weather affect the best time to do waterproofing?

Weather is an important consideration when it comes to basement waterproofing and foundation repairs. Some activities, like repairing basement cracks, can be done anytime of the year but are best done when it's not raining. Others, like excavating foundation walls, should not be done during cold winter months.

How does rain affect waterproofing activities?

Crack Repair

It depends on what materials you are using whether or not you can repair a crack that is actively leaking. If you plan to inject high pressure polyurethane into a crack, it doesn't make a difference because the polyurethane is waterproof and dries quickly. On the other hand, if you plan to use epoxy in the crack, it may leak all the way through the crack and allow water to reenter.

Foundation Excavation

It is never a good idea to excavate a foundation while the soil is wet or it is raining for the following reasons:
  • It is extremely messy!
  • Working with wet clay is like working with quick sand and is very inefficient. For the same reason, it represents a higher risk for workers.
  • Working with wet sandy soil makes it more likely to cause later cave-ins.
  • Both water and solvent based foundation coatings simply don't adhere to wet foundation walls.

How does cold weather affect waterproofing activities?

Crack Repair

If you are working indoors, cold weather has little effect on crack repair. It all depends on the type of material you are using.
  • Polyurethane - Winter is the best time to do polyurethane injection work, especially in parking garages and structures that get extremely cold. Concrete shrinks during the winter, therefore opening gaps to their maximum width, so the polyurethane will be flexible enough to fill the gap year-round. Fluid polyurethane resin is thicker when cold and takes longer to cure during winter weather.
  • Epoxy – Epoxy crack injection is also feasible during winter months. Cold weather thickens the epoxy resin also. At 77 resin also. At 77°, epoxy resin cures in 3-5 hours; during the winter months, it takes longer.

Foundation Excavation and Waterproofing

Winter is not the best time to perform foundation excavation and exterior waterproofing for the following reasons:
  • While it is possible to coat a foundation with a solvent-based product, water-based coatings should never be used in cold weather.
  • Because solvent based coatings may require 48 hours to cure, it would cause your foundation to be exposed to freezing temperatures and frost for a period of several days which may result in foundation heaving and damage.
  • Solvent based foundation coatings have a terrible odor, and with your windows closed, the smell will penetrate your home for at least a week.
  • Freeze and thaw cycles increase the likelihood of soil cave-ins which are very dangerous and would require more time to pile and replace the soil into the foundation.
At Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry, we work year-round and can take care of all of your foundation crack repair and excavation repair needs.  We specialize in masonry repair.  Contact us today!

Preventing Frozen Pipes in VA

Problems with Frozen Pipes during VA Winters

water shut-off valve, frozen pipes, water leaks Richmond Did you have a problem with frozen pipes or broken pipes last winter? Each winter, thousands of homeowners in Virginia lose water service due to frozen and broken pipes and water meters. Now that the air is warmer and ground is thawing, it's not too soon to start thinking think about how to prevent problems next year. Repairing and replacing frozen pipes and water-damaged walls, floors, and items on floors can be expensive and time-consuming. The homeowner has a further expense by being responsible for paying for water that leaks from a broken pipe. It can cost more than $100 to replace a broken water meter. The following article explains ways of preventing frozen pipes in VA and what to do when a pipe does become frozen.

What can I do now to prevent pipes and meters from freezing?

There are several things you should do before the weather gets below freezing again:
  • Find the location of your main water shut-off valve. If a pipe freezes or breaks, you'll know where to shut it off immediately.
  • Identify which areas of your home are most vulnerable to frozen pipes, including basements, crawl spaces, unheated rooms and outside walls.
  • Insulate your pipes and water meter. By wrapping exposed pipes with insulation or electrical heating wires, you will protect your pipes from freezing. If you do it yourself, make sure that you follow the manufacturer's instructions to avoid a fire hazard.
  • Eliminate sources of cold air sources near water pipes by repairing broken windows, insulating walls, sealing crawl spaces and preventing drafts near doors.  Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry offers services in both crawl space sealing and foundation repair to avoid problems with freezing.
  • Disconnect hoses from outside faucets and, if possible, shut off outside water valves.
  • For outside meters, make sure the lid to the meter is closed tightly. If snow falls on top of it, don't worry because snow acts as a good insulator.

What should I do when it gets below freezing?

When the outside temperature is consistently below freezing, there are a few precautions that you can take to prevent water pipes from breaking.
  • At night, when it is coldest, turn on a small trickle of water from both your cold and hot water faucets. The cost of the extra water is minimal compared to the cost of repairing a broken pipe. If you don't want to waste water, collect it in a bowl for feeding pets or watering plants.
  • Leave open cabinet doors, even just a crack, to expose pipes to the warmer air in the room.

What if I'm going to be gone for more than a few days?

If you plan to leave your home for more than a few days, it is wise to take a few extra precautions.
  • Don't turn your thermostat down below 50 degrees. It is important to keep a minimal level of heat inside the house.
  • Ask a neighbor, friend, or relative to check your home occasionally to make sure the heat is working and pipes aren't frozen.
  • Consider purchasing a freeze alarm, which costs less than $100. It will call any specified number if the indoor temperature drops below 45 degrees.

What should I do if my pipes do freeze?

If you do have the misfortune of a frozen pipe, there are certain steps you should take first.
  • Turn your water off immediately at the shut-off valve. Freezing may have caused the pipes to crack, and thawing them without turning off the water may cause them to leak through undetected cracks.
  • Apply heat to the frozen pipe by either warming the air around it by raising the room temperature or using a space heater. You can also apply heat directly to the pipe with a hair dryer or hot water. For safety purposes, keep an eye on space heaters and avoid the use of kerosene heaters or open flames.
  • When the pipes are thawed, turn on the water gradually and check for any cracks or leaks.
  • If you do have a cracked or broken pipe, your only choice is to a plumber to repair it before you turn the water back on.
These simple measures can assure that you won't have a problem with frozen pipes or water meters next year. Contact us if you have further questions about how to insulate your crawl space and repair problems with your masonry or foundation wall to avoid frozen pipes.

Why Inspecting Your Masonry is so Important

Sometimes when you look at your brick home (or business) the last thing you notice is the bricks and their condition. You might look at landscaping that needs work or roofing that needs to be replaced, but you don't think about the bricks deteriorating. It's really not something you should ignore in your Virginia home or business.

A Large Scale Masonry Failure Example

Look at this large scale example of masonry failure at Ohio State University last year: Because masonry was not repaired some of the brick and stone fell. Thankfully no one was hurt but other parts of the structure were damaged and the repairs are quite expensive. It doesn't matter if it is your home or business, this isn't something you want happening. Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry can assist with repairs, but we can also tell you what to look for to avoid failure:Symptoms that might mean my brick or masonry is failing 1. Cracking: There are multiple types of cracks that can occur - some are dangerous and some are not a huge problem but it is hard to tell without an expert inspecting it. The age of the building, the type of building, and how the building was built play into cracking. Have cracks inspected to determine the extent of the problem. 2. Efflorescence: You might notice a build up of a white substance on the brick. If there is a lot of moisture in the wall it can come out through the masonry. This causes the white build up. It is the salts that are collected when the water moves through the brick to the face of the brick. 3. Spalling: If you notice pieces of brick flaking off the brick this is called spalling. Small or large pieces can come off, and either is a sign of a problem. Freezing and thawing can sometimes cause is problem.

Don't wait for Masonry Repairs

Paying attention to the brick and masonry on your home or business can save you a lot of money in the long run. Repairs can be much less expensive than masonry failure. It can also improve the curb value of your home. It's important to note that whether your home or business is relatively new or a historical, older home. Brick and masonry problems can occur to any structure depending on weather conditions and other external factors. Give us a call for a free estimate on your masonry repairs in Virginia.

Virginia saw Flooding in Sept. from Hurricane Hermine

Recovering from Virginia Foundation Floodingfoundation flooding

In September Hurricane Hermine ripped its way through the Carolinas and into Virginia. Along with downed trees and power outages, there was intense coastal flooding. For many home and business owners, this hurricane was devastating. Foundation flooding not only causes awful water damage, but it can ruin your possessions as well. So, what is the best way to recover from a flood? Contact us here at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry! We offer a variety of waterproofing and foundation repair services to help fix your flooding issues and prevent them in the future as well. From interior and exterior drainage installation to helical and steel push piers, we have everything you might need. We want to help you make sure your Virginia home or business is safe from water damage and foundation failure. Give us a call today to learn more!

Solutions for Flooding in Virginia

We here at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry offer a variety of solutions for flooding and other water related problems, including sump pumps, battery backup sump pumps, and interior or exterior drainage installation. These can both help remedy the immediate problem--like a flooded basement--and prevent these problems in the future. Invest in your home's future and get waterproofing before you need it. Contact us today to learn more about our waterproofing options as well as foundation repair, masonry work, and crawl space repair. We are here to help!

Showers, Storms, and Wall Cracks in Richmond, VA

Summer Storms and Wall Cracks in Richmond, VA

For many places around the country--including Richmond, Virginia--summer brings storms. If your home or business has even small wall cracks, you may experience leakage from the rain. Larger wall cracks could cause flooding in and around your basement. This can ruin your possessions and devalue your home. If you are not sure if your basement has wall cracks, there are other signs you can look for such as mold and mildew, water stains, wood rot, leakage, and crumbling concrete or brick. Keep an eye out for these signs of wall cracks and water damage.

Wall Crack Solutions for Richmond, VA Homeswall cracks richmond va

If you notices these signs of wall cracks, you may want to consider wall crack repair. We here at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry offer a variety of foundation repair and waterproofing services, including wall crack repair. This service will help seal out water and prevent cracks from widening. We also offer sump pump installation and repair as well as battery backup sump pump installation. Sump pumps divert excess water away from your home and act as an extra defense against water damage for your Richmond, Virginia home or business. Contact Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry for more information on the services we offer, such as foundation repair, waterproofing, crawl space repair, masonry services, brick re-pointing, and concrete restoration. Our service area covers most of Virginia, so if you live in Virginia and are in need of the services mentioned above, make sure to give us a call! We want to help you have peace of mind when it comes to your home or business and its foundation. Contact us today!

Prevent a Wet Basement this Spring

Basement Waterproofing Options for Virginia Homesbasement waterproofing richmond va

Waterproofing is often ignored when it comes to your home's overall "health". Most of the time it is put off until there is an emergency that needs immediate attention. Water damage can be completely avoided with the proper basement waterproofing services from Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. We offer a variety of basement waterproofing solutions for your Richmond, VA home or business. Our foundation repair and waterproofing products come from Earth Contact Products, a top producer of high quality products. You can rest easy knowing that the waterproofing services we provide will protect your home from water damage. Some of the waterproofing products and services we offer include:
  • Sump pumps
  • Interior drainage
  • Exterior drainage
  • Battery backup sump pumps
  • Vapor barriers

Waterproofing Solutions for Richmond, VA

basement waterproofing virginiaTogether these products and services will provide you with complete protection against water damage in your Richmond, VA home's basement, crawl space, or foundation. Make sure that you do not wait until there is a major problem. Getting repairs and waterproofing installation can cost a small fortune. The best way to avoid this is by installing waterproofing before any water damage affects your home. Contact us today if you notice signs of water damage such as: These signs point to issues that may become serious if your home does not have the proper waterproofing protection. We can help you there. Give us a call today to learn more about our basement waterproofing services. We also provide foundation repair, crawl space repair, masonry, brick re-pointing, and concrete restoration services for those in our service area. Our service area covers most of Virginia. We want to help you protect your home and everyone in it. Contact us today to learn more or for a FREE estimate.

Wet Yard? Solve it with Drainage Solutions for your Virginia Home

Exterior Drainage Solution Systems can Protect your Yardwet yard virginia

If your yard has puddles or soggy spots many days after a rain storm, you may have drainage problems. It is normal for moisture to dry within a day or two, and if it takes longer you may be in need of a drainage solution. The best way to avoid this is by installing exterior drainage systems. Luckily, Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry can provide you with these services. Having water standing or flowing through your yard for an extended period of time can cause a variety of problems for your home and its foundation. It may even cause your foundation to sink and settle, walls to lean and bow, foundation cracks, wet basement, and more. This should not be taken lightly. Call Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry for waterproofing solutions in Virginia.

Waterproofing Solutions for Virginia Residents

Consider exterior drainage a preventative measure. Water surrounding the foundation is the number one cause of foundation failure in North America. By having drainage systems in place, you can completely avoid this cause of foundation failure. When interior and exterior drainage are used together they can protect your home from almost all water damage. We also suggest planting water-tolerant flora and filling and leveling any indentations. While it can't take care of water problems alone, it can help. Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry can install both exterior and interior drainage systems and provide foundation repair, waterproofing, concrete repair, brick re-pointing, and masonry services. Our service area covers all of Virginia, but if you are in the surrounding area contact us and we will try our best to work with you. We pride our business on great customer service, high quality products, and timely solutions. With spring showers right around the corner, consider exterior drainage for Virginia home. Contact us to learn more!

VA Waterproofing: Glossary of Waterproofing Words

Waterproofing Glossarywaterproofing glossary

It can be hard to approach waterproofing when there is a whole vocabulary that you may not know or understand. We here at Reliable Masonry & Waterproofing want to make sure you fully understand the vocabulary that surrounds waterproofing. The more someone understands waterproofing terms, the easier it will be to make an educated decision about your home or business. The following is a glossary of words that pertain to waterproofing.
  1. Damp Proof: The use of a material--often tar--to prevent water from seeping into the foundation. It is usually applied to the exterior of the foundation.
  2. Dehumidifier: This device is used to control the humidity in the air. It also can help control dampness by removing moisture.
  3. Dry Well: And underground pit that holds water that has been diverted from roofs, French drains, etc, until it can seep into the soil safely.
  4. Erosion: The gradual degradation of soil and rock over time due to wind, water, and other natural forces. If your foundation erodes away, it can allow water to seep into the basement or crawl space.
  5. Exterior Daylight System: A trench and drainage system around the exterior of a foundation that collects and diverts water to prevent it from harming the foundation.
  6. Exterior Drainage: Any waterproofing measures outside of your home or business that helps prevent water damage to your driveway, yard, or foundation.
  7. French Drain: A trench around the exterior of a home that diverts storm water runoff. Helps prevent water damage or flooding in your foundation. It contains a perforated pipe that moves water away from the home.
  8. Interior Waterproofing: Any waterproofing measures inside your home. These can help evacuate water from your basement and move it outside your home.
  9. Regrade: A way of raising the soil level around your home so that water does not pool in your yard or around your foundation.
  10. Sub-Floor Drainage System: A system that moves water from below the floor and interior walls of a home to sump pumps or other drainage systems.
  11. Sump Pump: A pump and tank that is installed in the basement or crawl space of a home. It collects and diverts water away from a home that would otherwise cause harm to the foundation.
  12. Water Management System: A network of pipes and drainage around the perimeter of the basement that collects water below the floor and moves it to the sump pump to be diverted away from the home.
If you have questions regarding foundation repair, waterproofing, or crawl space repair, we can help. We offer all of these services and more. Just give us a call. We also offer FREE estimates. Contact us today!

Can My Brick Home Cause Water Problems?

Weep Holes in Virginia Brick Homesbrick and masonry virginia

If you have a brick home in Virginia it is likely that you have noticed a small gap in the lower part of your home's exterior. Many homeowners wonder if this gap in the brick was an accident, or a mistake made by the builders. You will be happy to know it was not a mistake made by your bricklayer, in fact, it was intentional. They did not forget to add mortar to that spot. Brick is much like a sponge. It is porous and absorbs water. The purpose of that small hole is so that water may drain from the brick and the basement. It also allows air to flow to help dry the brick. While that is its purpose, whether or not that actually helps waterproof your home is up for debate. Those holes do have some drawbacks. For example, they are often wide enough to allow pests such as bugs, mice, and even snakes to enter. Also, modern homes are built air tight, but older homes were built to "breathe". They allowed air and water to flow freely from the inside to the outside and vice versa. The modern weep holes do not allow the proper ventilation and moisture can become trapped inside, leading to mold and mildew, wood rot, water stains, and even deterioration of the brick. One of the best ways to prevent these problems is through waterproofing. Sump pumps, interior and exterior drainage systems, and vapor barriers can help restrict moisture in your home.

Brick and Masonry Services and Solutions

If you notice signs of water damage, make sure to contact us here at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. We offer all types of waterproofing services for your needs. We also offer masonry and brick re-pointing to update your home. Brick doesn't handle long exposure to moisture well. It will begin to crack, crumble, and flake. Keep your brick home up to date and safe from moisture with our services. We also offer foundation repair, concrete repair, crawlspace repair, and more. Contact us today to learn more about the services we offer and how we can help you protect your home.

Tips Every Virginia Homeowner Should Know about Sump Pumps

Sump Pump Facts for Virginia Homeowners

sump pump virginia One of the best ways to keep your home, foundation, and basement or crawlspace safe is by having a sump pump. Excess moisture can cause a variety of problems for Virginia homes including cracking foundation, bowing or leaning walls, sticking doors and windows, water stains, rotting wood, sinking or settling foundation, mold and mildew, flooding, and more. Sump pumps can help keep moisture from having a negative effect on your home. There are a few things all homeowners should know about sump pumps, such as:
  1. Homes with a Basement or Crawlspace Should Have a Sump Pump: Basements and crawlspaces are the perfect place for water damage and flooding. Without a sump pump your basement or crawlspace could be flooded at any time, but with a sump pump that water will be diverted to a place away from your home. Stay safe from losing your possessions and possible foundation issues with a sump pump.
  2. Sump Pumps Should be Installed in the Lowest Level of your Basement or Crawlspace: Completely remove the possibility of flooding with sump pumps. If you have a sump pump installed at the lowest point, the water will not even reach the floor level before it is whisked away to a dry well or storm drain. We can help you determine the best possible place to have your sump pump installed.
  3. Battery Backup Sump Pumps are a Smart Investment: Power outages can leave you vulnerable to flooding and water damage. With a battery backup sump pump, you will always be safe. Storms can lead to power outages and the rain can cause flooding, so protect your basement or crawlspace at all times with this product.
  4. Sump Pumps can Freeze like Water Lines: Just like pipes, sump pumps can freeze if not installed at the proper depth. That's why you should come to Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry for your sump pump needs. We can install it correctly for you the first time.
  5. Test your Sump Pump Once Every Three Months: You don't want to find out that your sump pump isn't working by having a flooded basement, so make sure to test your sump pump at least every three months. At minimum, you should test your sump pump once a year. To test your sump pump, pour water into the sump pump until it reaches the float trigger. This will activate it. Make sure to water level drops back down afterwards. The sump pump should turn off when the water is back below the shutoff level.
Contact us today with any questions you may have about sump pumps. We can help you choose and install sump pumps in your Virginia home. We also offer foundation repair, waterproofing, crawlspace repair, masonry services, brick re-pointing, and concrete restoration. Our service area covers all of Virginia. Give us a call today!  

What Affect Does Colder Weather Have on Your Virginia Foundation?

Winter Foundation Problems

winter foundation cracking virginia

What many Virginia homeowners may not realize is that winter and its cold weather can actually have harmful effects on your home's foundation. When the weather reaches freezing temperatures, winter foundation problems and damage become more likely. When the temperature is under 40 degrees for three consecutive days or more, the likeliness rises even more. Knowing the signs of foundation damage can help you stay ahead. The most common types of foundation damage include cracking foundation, leaking water, and uneven flooring. Cold temperatures cause moisture in the soil to freeze, causing frost heave. This creates cracking in concrete and masonry. If these issues are not kept track of, it can lead to further problems throughout your Virginia home, including sticking doors and windows, cracking walls and ceilings, leaning and bowing walls, and much more. If you notice cracking in your basement, around your foundation, or in your home, make sure to contact us here at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. We can help your determine the extent of the damage and begin the process of repairing it.

Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry Serves Virginia All Year Round

Winter is not the only time that foundation failure can happen, so knowing the variety of problems that can affect your Virginia home can help you identify these issues early. If you do happen to notice damage around your home, make sure to contact a foundation repair professional as soon as possible. Waiting and letting these problems continue will lead to further damage. This can lead to more expensive, time consuming, and complex repairs. Call Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry today with your winter foundation problems and concerns! Here are just a few of the common foundation problems that may affect your home: We here at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry are proud to say that we have a large service area. Our service area covers almost all of Virginia including Richmond, Petersburg, Hopewell, Colonial Heights, Charles City, and more. Contact us today for more information on our services which include foundation repair, waterproofing, concrete repair, masonry repair, and crawl space repair.    

Prepare your Virginia Chimney for Winter

Cleaning and Prepping Virginia Chimney for Winterpreparing Virginia chimney for winter

If your Virginia home has a chimney it is likely to get most of its use during the winter, and that is why as a homeowner you need to make sure your chimney is clean and safe all year round. Winter is on its way and your home's heating system, whether it be a furnace or a fireplace, is about to go into overdrive. Your chimney disposes of dangerous byproducts that come from your heating system. So, before those cold temperatures hit, it is best to make sure that your chimney is in working order. If your chimney is dirty or even blocked, air is not allowed to flow out. In the winter, your house is almost always closed up with all the doors and windows closed. This can leave those deadly pollutants inside your house. We have a list of tips we suggest for preparing your Virginia chimney for the coming winter.

Keep your Virginia Chimney Clean and Safe All Year Round

  • Have your Chimney Professionally Inspected - Homes with a chimney should have their chimney inspection done once per year. This allows the homeowner to have peace of mind that all the parts of the chimney are working and safe. It also removes the possibility of obstructions inside the chimney from affecting your home. Having a certified professional inspect is best because they met certain guidelines to become certified, so you can be sure of the results.
  • Take Note of Abnormalities - You live in your home, so you are its best advocate. If you notice strange smells, drafts that you haven't noticed before, or other out of the ordinary happenings with your chimney, make sure you take note and remember them when you have your chimney inspected.
  • Keep your Chimney's Damper Closed When not in Use -  Especially in the winter, you are paying to keep your home at a comfortable temperature. If the damper is open, it will allow cool air into your home. This will make your heating system work harder than it should have to in order to keep your home's temperature constant. You will pay more in energy costs if your damper is open when the chimney is not in use.
  • Check for Chimney Leaks and Water Damage - Just like a roof, basement, or foundation, a chimney can be affected by water damage. If you notice your chimney is leaking or the bricks are cracking or splitting, make sure to contact a professional contractor to fix the water damage. Keeping your chimney up to date and safe will keep your whole home safer and will save you money.
For more information on how to prepare your Virginia chimney for winter, you can contact us here at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. We can have a professional come perform a chimney inspection today! We also offer a variety of other services, including foundation repair, waterproofing, masonry repair, and concrete repair. We provide our customers with FREE estimates, as well. Give us a call today! We want to help make sure you can rest easy all year round knowing your home is safe.

Mold Prevention: What You Should Know

Everything You Need To Know About Mold Prevention In Your Home

For homeowners in Richmond, Virginia and surrounding areas, it is important to know the signs and causes of mold growth, as well as how to prevent it and get rid of it. When heavy rains and floods come, your basement will be prone to water seepage which in many cases can cause mold to grow. Where moisture is present, mold wants to be. That is why it is vital to keep your home and basement safe, clean, and dry to prevent mold and all of the hazardous issues that come along with it.

Prevent mold and mildew with waterproofing by Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry

There are many ways that water and moisture can enter your home. Most commonly, it is because of poor drainage. If your gutters are clogged, or if you have short downspouts that don't direct water away from your home, water can pool up around the base of your foundation and leak into your basement. This can especially occur if you have cracks in your foundation walls or if your pipes are leaky. Another way that your basement can be wet is through high humidity situations. When water evaporates, perhaps from wet clothing that is hanging to dry, it creates a very humid atmosphere. From this humidity, condensation can grow on metal pipes, basement floors, and walls. Since your basement doesn't see sunlight and isn't ventilated as well as the rest of your house, the humidity won't go away by itself. This creates a venue for mold to grow as well.

Mold Prevention In Your Basement

The best way to start mold prevention in your Richmond, Virginia home is to sufficiently waterproof your basement and keep moisture as far away as possible. Some ways you can do this are to invest in a proper drainage system, such as extended downspouts or new gutters. You can also hire a waterproofing company, like Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry, to install various exterior and interior waterproofing systems into your home. Another thing you can do is keep your basement clean and tidy, and invest in a dehumidifier to remove moisture that is in the air. If your home has experienced water seepage or flooding, it is important to take action immediately to prevent mold from growing. One option is to hire a professional mold removal/prevention company or water damage specialist to clean and protect your home. If you want to do it yourself, it is vital that you clean everything out that has been damaged by flood water. If the damage is serious, items like carpet and dry wall may have to be completely removed and replaced. You should use detergent or another cleaning product to clean your possessions that have been damaged by flood water. Above all, get rid of standing or pooling water as soon as you can, as this can cause toxic black mold to grow. When inspecting your house for mold growth, check the following areas where mold loves to grow:
  • Wall Cavities
  • Drywall
  • Ceilings
  • Floors
  • Pipes
  • Carpets
  • Insulation
  • Wall Paper
  • Wood frames
  • Furniture
  • Storage Boxes
  • Ducts and Vents
You will usually recognize mold through musty smells and damp spots throughout your home. If you have noticed any signs of mold, or seen visible mold and mildew in your home, you should get it removed as soon as possible. The growth of mold is very dangerous and can cause serious health issues to you and your family. Don't hesitate to call Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry today with any questions and concerns you have about mold growth in your basement and home. We are your professional waterproofing company in Richmond, Virginia, and surrounding areas!

How Does Water Affect Masonry?

Affects of Water on Your Virginia Home's Masonry

If you want to prevent problems from occurring with the masonry on your home, such as your chimney or brick walls, you need to be aware of the different problems that water can cause. Rain water, condensation, humidity, and pooling water are all forms of moisture that could spell trouble for your masonry. That is why it is important to take precautionary measure as much as possible and to regularly check over the masonry on your home for signs of water damage. These water sources can cause problems such as: Look for these issues in the masonry on your Virginia home. If you see signs such as discoloration, hairline cracks in between the mortar and the brick, poorly filled mortar joints, or larger cracks throughout the mortar, you may be dealing with a water issue in your masonry. Problems like deterioration and corrosion are causes when the constant exposure to water starts to wear on the brick or stone masonry. Eventually, this could make the entire structure less stable. Cracks can be due to a foundation issue or due to deterioration. Whichever is the case, cracks can lead to moisture seeping into the rest of the home. Cracks and also lead to further structural damage, as they contribute to lower structural integrity in the entire area of the masonry. Spalling is the chipping and flaking of bricks. This is a sort of deterioration that happens when the surface of the bricks is exposed to too much moisture. Another issue that can result from water is efflorescence. This is a white-ish calcium buildup on your bricks or masonry that may indicate water exposure and further moisture problems. These kinds of problems occur commonly when water is allowed to pool against the masonry. Rain that has saturated the masonry can also cause water issues, as it takes a few days to dry, and the drying process can be slowed down by plants or algae.

Solutions for Masonry Water Problems in Richmond, VA

Masonry Water Damage Repair from Reliable Waterproofing and MasonryIf there are cracks in your masonry, the solution may be to invest in foundation repair services from Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry. We offer solutions to close the cracks in your masonry and get your home back to normal. For other masonry water damage issues that you may be dealing with, we can provide masonry repair and basement waterproofing services. We will help you repair damage to get your home looking like new again and fix any recurring water issues to prevent future problems. Some of the services that we offer for masonry repair are: brick laying and re-pointing, retaining walls, block foundations, and chimneys. If you are in need of basement waterproofing, we offer sump pump systems as well as interior and exterior drainage systems. Contact a professional from Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry of Virginia today to get your masonry water damage under control and keep further water issues at bay.

Preventative Tips for Basement Waterproofing in Virginia

Preventative Basement Waterproofing in Virginia

While flooding and dampness in the basement can be a troublesome issue for some homeowners in Virginia, it is also an issue that can often be prevented easily. There are a number of steps you can take yourself to keep your protected from basement moisture problems. Consider looking for the following causes of a water problem in your basement and taking action right away:
  • Gutter Problems: Your gutters may be defective or clogged, causing rainwater to run down the house and gather around the foundation, where it seeps through the concrete. Install gutters or fix and clean any malfunctioning gutters to prevent water pooling near your foundation. 
  • Wet Basement Prevention in VirginiaThick Shrubs and Bushes by Foundation: Large plants right next to the house can keep the soil moist longer, causing the basement walls to be exposed to moisture for longer periods of time. Trim shrubbery often to let sunlight dry the soil faster.
  • Open and Bare Basement Window Wells: If the window wells in your home are allowed to collect water and debris, they can allow the water to enter the basement through cracks, especially during severe storms. Invest in window well covers and gravel for drainage in the bottom of the window wells.
  • Leaky Plumbing: Plumbing issues are an obvious cause of certain basement moisture issues, and should be fixed as soon as possible.
  • Improperly Graded Slopes: If the yard that surrounds your home does not slope away from the house, it may let rainwater collect around the house. The longer this water sits near the home, the greater the chance that it will see through the walls and into the basement. Ensure that your yard is graded properly so that the land slopes away from the foundation, letting water run away from the concrete.

Reducing the Need for Basement Waterproofing in Your Virginia Home

These suggestions are only a few different ways that you can prevent the need for professional basement waterproofing in your home. You should also ensure that water pipes are insulated to reduce condensation, the entire area has adequate ventilation, windows are closed during humid weather and rain, a dehumidifier is installed to reduce dampness, and any cracks in the walls or floors are sealed. These steps will help to keep basement water at bay in your Virginia home. Basement Waterproofing in VirginiaIf there are persistent problems with moisture in your basement, it may be time to invest in professional waterproofing services. Do not let the water in your basement become an issue that you cannot handle - if you cannot find the source and none of the preventative measures listed above are stopping water from entering your home, contact Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry today. We offer several solutions, including sum pump installation and both interior and exterior drainage systems. These solutions will remove water from your basement and keep the area dry for years to come. Call us right away to learn more about preventing mold growth and other moisture issues in your Virginia home.

Block Foundation Problems & Repair in Virginia

What is Wrong With Your Foundation and How To Repair It

Out of all of the structural and hydraulic issues that can occur in a home, a majority of them can be attributed to foundation problems. A major issue that we commonly see is leaning or bowing walls. When a foundation wall is sloped, it can be an incredible cause for concern among Virginia homeowners. Their appearance can lead you to think that they will need to be completely replaced, but the repair of bowing block walls is possible and will leave you with a stronger wall than you had before. Leaning walls in older homes can be quite common because walls that were built in the 20th century were not designed to support the weight of the structure above them for long periods of time. Fortunately, this damage can be reversed with the right tools and equipment with our very skillful team of professionals here at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. crack-695010_1280 There are various forces that can work together to cause a bowing block wall. Water and soil pressure from below combined with the structure weight from above can put pressure on the wall that is more than it can bear. This causes it to bend, crack, and eventually fail. In the earlier stages, bowing walls can be hard to identify. The damage can sometimes hardly be noticed, but there are a few things you should look out for. When doors, cabinets, and windows aren't shutting properly, it can be an indicator that your foundation walls are losing strength. Some other symptoms to look out for include misaligned doors and windows, separating molding or trim, leaky walls, and garage column cracks. Another foundation problem that you may have seen is wall, floor, and ceiling cracks. Although small and seemingly insignificant cracks may not look like a big deal, they usually mean that something is wrong with your foundation. Cracks that are bigger than even the width of a dime can indicate that your foundation is failing, or that your home is not sufficiently waterproofed. A failing foundation can also cause sloped and uneven floors. Due to the intense changes of climate that Virginia can experience, the soil underneath your house often fluctuates and can cause the foundation to move as well. When the foundation moves, this can cause the floors that it holds to sink or rise.

Don't Wait On Foundation Problems for Your Virginia Home

Foundation damage does not fix itself, and deterioration can quickly come if early warnings are not heeded. It is important to strictly and regularly monitor any suspicious cracks, and get your foundation inspected by a professional as soon as you can. The best thing to do to prevent further damage is to get your foundation repaired and your basement waterproofed as soon as possible. For foundation repair in Virginia, products such as steel piers, tieback anchors, and hydraulic lift slab piers can be used. For waterproofing, consider a sump pump or an interior or exterior drainage system. These products will help to get the water away from your foundation and prevent destruction, while maintaining its strength for years to come. Call Reliable for assistance with all your foundation repair needs in Virginia!

The Top 10 Reasons Why Your Basement is Taking on Water Damage

Where Is All That Water Damage Coming From?

Whether your basement is your family's favorite hang out spot, or just an extra storage space, you sure don't want water down there. Water damage can destroy your personal belongings, and allow mold and mildew to grow. It is important to be educated on how water is entering your basement in order to protect it from being flooded. Here we will discuss the main entry points of water into your home. 1. Cracks in your basement and crawlspace walls: This can be a serious issue, because simply mending the crack will not solve the entire problem forever. If water pressure is causing cracks in your basement, you need to get rid of the water, not just the crack. The best thing to do would be to install a waterproof drainage system around your home. water-seepage-basement 2. Poor Drainage: If your house is on a slope, rainwater can rush towards your foundation and right over the top of your foundation wall into your basement. If your gutter downspouts are not directed properly away from your house, or they are too short, rain water from your roof could be directly coming down on your foundation wall, and the pressure will increase chances of leakage. 3. "Honeycombs": If your concrete walls weren't mixed properly when they were originally poured, they could have multiple air pockets and cavities that resemble a honeycomb. These air pockets can cause seepage, but fortunately they are a quick and easy fix and just need to be sealed. 4. A Broken Sump Pump: The purpose of a sump pump is to collect the excess water around your home and eject it away from your foundation. A sump pump could fail because it wasn't installed properly in the first place. It also might not be working properly if its discharge lines were damaged by harsh weather, or if it was not maintained well. A sump pump will usually come with a backup, but we suggest that you also install a second waterproof system to complement your sump pump system so they can work efficiently together to keep water out of your basement. 5. Old Mortar Joints: Cinder block and brick foundation walls are joined together by mortar: a repair spalling brick in virginiasubstance that slowly deteriorates over time and becomes more susceptible to water leakage. 6. Drain Tile Damage: Drain tile is the plastic piping that goes around the perimeter of your basement walls. Although these pipes are not particularly prone to disaster, they can still be affected by overgrown tree roots. 7. Clogs in the Sewer Line: Uncontaminated water from your sewer pipes can come up through the sink and floor drains in your basement if there is a clog in your sewer line. 8. Sewer pipe leaks: Small leaks from a sewage pipe can go unnoticed for a long time because pipes usually leak very slowly, and they will usually manifest themselves as ceiling stains and mold. 9. Floor cracks: High water pressure against your home can be caused by heavy rains, poor drainage, clay soil, storms and floods. This leads to a buildup of excess water that pushes against the foundation causing cracks in the basement floor. The more water that enters your basement, the more likely it is that your basement will be humid and moldy. This can also increase your energy bill and allow dust mites to enter. 10. Window Well Entrance: Window wells are a clever installment that you can definitely benefit from. They are designed to allow your basement to receive sunlight through the windows while protecting them from excess water from the ground. Unfortunately, other water sources still get in. A common issue is gutter obstruction which may result in rain water spewing out of your gutter and filling the window well. To avoid this, make sure you regularly clean out your gutters, and redirect your downspouts away from your window wells. Also, make sure that your basement windows are good quality and properly installed.

How Can I Have a Safe and Dry Basement in Virginia?

The purpose of discussing why and how water is getting into your basement is not just for your education, but to help you know where to go from here! If you have experienced any of the above water issues in your home, you need to take the next steps to fix these problems and avoid future damage to your basement. Wet basements are not only dirty and unappealing, but they can cause serious health issues and damage the entire structure of your home. Fortunately, there are many simple and cost-effective methods to fix a wet and damaged basement. The important thing to remember is that the water is your enemy, not the basement. No matter how much digging, replacing, or mending you do, the water will keep coming back, trying to enter your home. It is vital that you keep water as far away from your home as possible through proper drainage. To speak with a waterproofing consultant today about any concern you may have regarding your basement, feel free to contact Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. Our highly trained and experienced professionals are happy to give you the safe and dry basement you've been waiting for!

Brick, Stone, & Masonry Problems in Virginia

Common Problems with Brick, Stone, & Masonry in Richmond, VA

It is hard to escape the masonry problems that affect older homes in Richmond, VA. At one time or another, you are likely to encounter these issues. Nothing is indestructible, especially when it is constantly exposed to rain, snow, hail, wind, heat, and freezing temperatures. Your brick, stone, and masonry will get old and broken down, just like a roof, or any other part of your home or business. That is why you need to take care of it as you would any other part of your home or business. Some common problems that can affect brick, stone, and masonry are:commong brick stone masonry problems virginia
  • Crumbling - created through water damage, foundation failure, and/or age.
  • Chipping - caused by age, water damage, foundation failure, and a variety of other problems.
  • Flaking - caused by water seeping into bricks through pores, and heat making the brick expand and flake.
  • Cracking - floor, ceiling, wall, stair step, and foundation cracks are all things that you should watch out for.
  • Efflorescence - a white, crusty calcium residue left over when water evaporates and leaves a salt covering behind.

Masonry Problems & Repair Solutions by Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry in Virginiabrick stone masonry problems in richmond virginia

These issues are all common problems that affect brick, stone, and masonry, so if you notice these problems around your Virginia home, make sure to contact us here at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry as soon as possible. These could be signs of more urgent problems, especially if you are noticing more than one. Luckily, we have a variety of solutions such as brick re-pointing, concrete restoration, masonry repair, foundation repair, and waterproofing. So, no matter what your problem may be, we can help. Our team of professionals is experienced and knowledgeable in all areas of repair, and many of our repair tools and products are supplied by Earth Contact Products--also known as "the Very Best" in foundation repair and waterproofing products--so you can rest easy knowing you area receiving top quality repairs, products, and service. Contact us today to learn more about our foundation repair, waterproofing, and masonry problems and repair services. Our service area includes Richmond, Virginia and all of Northern Virginia. Give us a call today!  

Enjoy Your Patio Again with Concrete Restoration in Virginia

Beautiful Concrete Repair for Your Virginia Home

Summer, a time to enjoy the outdoors. The problem might be that you won't enjoy it because your patio space is run down, cracked, and uneven. These types of concrete repair problems are very common in our area. Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry is a local expert in concrete repair and restoration, and we can help you enjoy your outdoor space again. We offer the following concrete repair services:Enjoy your patio space with concrete repair in Virginia Because of changing soil conditions beneath concrete, or even animals that burrow under your concrete, concrete can sink and settle. This can cause cracking and breaking of concrete. Concrete stairs can pull away from patios as well. With our services listed above we can lift and level concrete in patios, driveways, sidewalks, pool decks and more. We can also resurface concrete for a smooth finish for a beautiful patio space. If your patio is beyond repair, we also can help with concrete replacement. Start fresh with a new patio.

Add Value to Your Virginia Home with Expert Concrete Repair Services

When you repair or replace the concrete for your patio or pool deck, sidewalks or driveways you add a lot of value to your home. You add curb value for sure. The most important thing however is the fact that you will have a beautiful space that your familiy can enjoy for years to come. We also do brick re-pointing. If your outdoor space has brick, we can repair and re-point the brick for your space as well. So if your are a Virginia homeowner and you have stopped enjoying your outdoor space because of concrete problems, call the team at Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry. We would be happy to provide you with a free quote so that you can start thinking about cookouts and family get-togethers in your outdoor space once again. We can't wait to help. Happy Summer for Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry!

Prevent Dust Mites, Mold, & Mildew with Basement Waterproofing in Virginia

Prevent Dust Mites, Mold, and Mildew in your Virginia Home

A wet and damp basement can cause many problems. Besides losing living space and ruining personal possessions, a wet basement can cause an unhealthy home. Mold and mildew thrive in a damp, dark area. The mold spores can get into the air that you breath, causing you and your family a number of health issues. Among the health issues cause by mold and mildew are:
  • Stuffy nose
  • Throat irritation
  • Coughing and wheezing
  • Lung infections
  • Eye irritation
Along with mold and mildew, a wet basement becomes an inviting place for dust mites and critters. The obvious sign of a wet or damp basement is standing water. However, there are more subtle signs that you may have a wet basement. Some of these signs are:
  • High humidity
  • Higher energy bills
  • Wood rot
  • Rust on appliances
  • Condensation on pipes
  • Musty odor
If you have any of these signs that you have a wet basement, it is important to have an experienced company inspect your home and offer the best solution for the repair. The professionals at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry can come and give you a free inspection. 

Basement Waterproofing Solutions in Virginia

Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry can get your basement livable again with proper basement waterproofing. Prevent mold and mildew with waterproofing by Reliable Waterproofing & MasonryWe offer:
  • Interior drainage systems
  • Exterior drainage systems
  • Sump pumps and sump pits
  • Battery backup sump pumps
Interior drainage system - The simplest and least costly approach to interior waterproofing is a drain channel adhered at the base of the wall, on top of the footing. Water is collected and drained into a sump basin. As the basin gets to a certain level, the sump pump will automatically turn on and drain the water out of the basin and away from the foundation. Exterior drainage system - Stopping water from surrounding the foundation is the best way to prevent water from entering your basement. With an exterior drainage system, water will not even get near your basement. This is done by installing a perforated drainage pipe along the exterior footing. This is then hooked up to a sump pump that drains the water away from the foundation. Sump pumps and sump pits - The sump pumps that Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry installs are 1/3 to 1/2 horsepower that can pump up to 5,000 gallons per hour. Battery backup sump pumps - In case of a power outage, Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry will install a battery backup sump pump that are the most energy efficient lineup of 12 volt backup sump pumps on the market. All of the products that we use are manufactured by Earth Contact Products (ECP), the leader in the manufacturing of basement waterproofing products in the industry. To prevent mold and mildew, let the experts at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry install that basement waterproofing system to fit your needs. Contact us today for a free inspection and free estimate.

Spring Thaw Can Bring Masonry Problems to Richmond, Virginia

Masonry Problems in Richmond, VA

get brick repair for crumbling masonry in virginiaBecause Virginia is located along the snow belt line, many homeowners experience the damaging effects of freezing weather. As ice and snow melt, masonry issues such as spalling, can quickly be seen on chimneys, retaining walls, and brick paving. Don't wait to address your masonry problems, contact our foundation repair experts to assess your home. Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry will repair masonry problems in Virginia before they become worse. In Virginia, spalling occurs more frequently because there are more freeze and thaw cycles in this geographic location. The cycle usually starts in October and ends the following spring thaw. Freeze and thaw cycles are the main culprit for spalling brick damage. As excessive amounts of water enters the masonry system prior to freezing, water is absorbed and locked inside the pores.  During winter, the water freezes and expands. As the pressure expands, it destroys the masonry system. This causes crumbling, cracking, scaling and deteriorating over time. As soon as you notice masonry damage, get it repaired immediately. Ignoring necessary repairs will only get worse over time. Since water penetration damages the interior and exterior of your home as well as the masonry, our experts will also look for the following issues:
  • Air leaks
  • Thermal bridging problems
  • Interior condensation
  • Damp, wet walls or insulation
  • Water leaks or water seepage
  • Existing freeze-thaw damage on chimney, below windows and other areas
  • Poor drainage from improper downspouts, gutters and other roof-wall interfaces
  • Rotting wood and wall coverings
  • Stained chimney exterior
  • Deteriorating exterior mortar
  • Water stains in ceiling and walls
  • Leaning or tilting chimney
If you notice cracks in the mortar or bricks, contact us immediately. We have brick and masonry solutions to keep your home stable before the spring thaw in Richmond, Virginia.

Masonry Solutions for Homes in Richmond, Virginia

brick re-pointing will fix masonry problems in virginiaRegardless of what is causing your masonry problems, our experts will provide the best repair solution. Since the freeze and thaw cycle causes settlement in your masonry and bricks, we offer foundation repair solutions to restore your foundation and increase your home's value. ECP steel piers or helical piers are installed beneath the foundation to stabilize and strengthen your foundation. Also, piers are used to prevent further masonry issues from occurring. When the bond between bricks and mortar fails, masonry repair and brick re-pointing will help renew and repair old masonry. We take great pride in preserving the natural beauty of your masonry. This is why we use the proper equipment and material to remove old mortar, and replace it with the appropriate color and texture. Contact Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry for professional, quality masonry service in the Richmond, Virginia area. We'll find the best solution to keep your home safe and dry for many years to come.

Don't Attempt DIY Foundation Repair for Your Virginia Home

Why You Shouldn't Use DIY Foundation Repair Options on your Virginia Home

Ask anyone who specializes in foundation repair and you will always get the same answer: Do not attempt DIY foundation repair! There is a reason for this. The most important part of any structure, whether it be your home or business, is its foundation. The foundation of a structure is what holds it together and prevents it from falling apart. When a building experiences foundation failure it really means that the whole structure is slowly falling apart. Without a strong and healthy foundation, a home or business can not stand.DIY foundation repair If your Virginia home or business is experiencing foundation failure, which you may be able to tell through signs such as foundation cracks, sticking windows and doors, sloping or uneven floors, or sinking foundation, make sure to contact the professionals at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. If you attempt DIY foundation repair and it is not installed correctly, the structure could fall apart faster, leading to a major problem that could cost you many thousands of dollars. Come to the professionals first. We are sure to install any repairs correctly the first time. You will not have to worry about foundation repair again if the professionals do it.

Common Problems that may Affect your Virginia Home

There are a variety of, what may seem to be, small and insignificant problems that may affect your home which may actually signify that your Virginia home or business is experiencing foundation failure. While these common problems may seem to be no problem alone, they usually appear alongside many other of these problems. Keep an eye out for these problems, and you may be able to catch foundation failure in its earliest stages, allowing you to get repairs that will be less complex, less expensive, and less time-consuming. Some of these common problems include:Foundation Wall Cracks The most common of these common problems are usually the cracks. Some of the first signs of foundation failure are cracks, almost all around the home or business, and not just around the foundation either. They may appear in the basement or crawl space, ground floors, or even floors above the ground floor. If you notice cracking, especially alongside any of these other common problems, make sure to contact the professionals at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. No matter what your problem is, Reliable can help. We offer services beyond foundation repair including waterproofing, crawl space repair, masonry, brick re-pointing, and even concrete restoration. Contact us today to learn more!

Inspecting Exterior Masonry in your Northern Virginia Home

What Effects Exterior Masonry in Northern Virginia

Keeping your brick in good shape can be hard, but knowing what effects your masonry can help you keep your brick looking great. Not only will it look great, but it will do its job in keeping your home or business safe. Deteriorating brick can leave your home or business in harm's way, so knowing the signs and causes of deteriorating brick is smart. There are a few things that specifically can harm your masonry and make you need masonry repairs, including:Masonry services tool set
  • Climate
  • Environmental causes
  • Terrain and vegetation
  • Cracking
  • Efflorescence
  • Corrosion
These are all things that can harm your brick home or business. Climate can have a major effect on masonry, especially in areas where freeze-thaw cycles are common. Places such as upstate New York will have this problem. There are many things that are environmental in nature that may harm your brick such as acid rain, vibrations from nearby roads, and salt water from nearby bodies of water. These may cause problems such as flaking, cracking, or erosion. Terrain and vegetation are also problems that you may encounter. Poor soil drainage, poor surface drainage, tree roots, and ivy are all issues. Keeping water away from your home is important, and keeping an eye on surrounding trees and plants is smart. Ivy may penetrate brick and mortar, so watch for this issue. Cracking is common in brick, but do not ignore it. Watch for stair-step cracks and other forms of cracking. This could mean that soil or your yard is not draining properly, which can cause foundation failure. Cracking is a good signal to watch out for, and to get inspected immediately. Efflorescence is a white staining deposit left behind by salt in water. This can be a signal of excess water around the area, which should be addressed as soon as possible by a professional. If you notice this problem on your brick, it should be cleaned off of the surface. Corrosion is caused by moisture that penetrates your masonry. Any metal within the walls will begin to corrode and rust. This will cause an expansion in the walls, leading to cracking and other problems. If you see signs of rusting, call a professional.

Problems with Masonry in Northern Virginia

Knowing that these problems can cause issues for your brick and masonry, you can begin looking for signs of these problems. There are multiple ways to tell if your brick and masonry are experiencing problems, such as:masonry inspection northern viriginia Some of these issues point to problems such as foundation failure. Regardless, if you notice these problems, you should contact the professionals at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. We have the solutions for all your masonry problems. Whether you need masonry repair or brick re-pointing, we have the products, tools, and services you need. Our service area covers all of Northern Virginia. Contact us today to learn more about our foundation repair, waterproofing, masonry, brick re-pointing, or concrete restoration services. You can also contact us for a FREE estimate. Call us today!

Hydrostatic Pressure - What is it, and Can you Prevent it?

Hydrostatic Pressure Causes Wet Basements and Cracked Basement/Foundation Walls

Prevent wet basements, bowing basement walls and cracked foundation walls by waterproofing your homeDoes your basement flood due to cracks? Do you notice a musty odor in your home? If you are encountering these issues, your home may be experiencing hydrostatic pressure. Hydrostatic pressure is a natural process that causes foundation failure over time. Basement walls may start to bow or lean, forming cracks throughout the home's structure. What is hydrostatic pressure? Hydro means 'water', and static means 'fixed or stable'. Homes built on clay soil tend to have higher water levels because clay absorbs water. As water seeps into the soil, the water table rises. The ground is unable to absorb excess water, therefore it creates hydrostatic pressure against your foundation walls. Small cracks form throughout the basement walls and foundation walls, creating a pathway for water. Your basement may flood especially during heavy rains. How does hydrostatic effect your home? Hydrostatic pressure, accompanied with snow melt and heavy rainfall, can intensify the pressure against basement walls. Over time, you may start to notice foundation issues, such as:
  • Water seepage through cracks
  • Bowing or leaning basement walls
  • Foundation and wall cracks
  • Crumbling, flaking and chipping foundations
  • Sloped or uneven floors
  • Sticking windows and doors

Hydrostatic Pressure Solutions for Wet Basements, Basement Walls and Foundation Walls

There are ways you can help prevent hydrostatic pressure from occurring in your basement. Hire our waterproofing experts to install ECP products and materials in your home. We use the latest products on the market to ensure quality service by our skilled professionals. Our waterproofing methods are designed to collect and divert water away from your home. We install the following products: Interior Drainage Systems
  • Less labor intensive
  • Installed all year round in all types of weather conditions
  • Prevents hydrostatic pressure by relieving water pressure from beneath the foundation
  • Less disruption to exterior
  • Collects floor and wall seepage
  • Guards against outside issues such as tree roots growing into the drainage system
Exterior Drainage Systems
  • Drains saturated soil and decreases water pressure against the foundation walls
  • Minimal disruption inside of the basement
Sump Pumps
  • Prevents water damage and flooding
  • Reduces mold and mildew growth
  • Minimizes the risk of fire due to wet electrical appliances such as heating systems, water heaters, and laundry machines
Sump Pits
  • Water is removed from the pit to prevent overflow
  • Collects water and other fluids
Our waterproofing solutions will give you long-lasting results so you won't have a wet basement. Contact Reliable Waterproofing today! We can prevent hydrostatic pressure against your basement and foundation walls in Virginia.  

Hurricane Season Ends this Month, But It Is Still Smart to Waterproof your VA Home

Waterproofing Your Home During Hurricane Season in Virginia

Waterproofing Virginia during hurricane seasonVirginia has had its share of bad weather, ranging from tropical storms to hurricanes. Hurricanes, like hurricane Sandy, were destructive causing black outs and basement flooding. That's why it is important to waterproof your home to prevent these disasters from recurring. At Reliable Waterproofing, we offer quality basement waterproofing in Virginia to keep your home habitable and dry. Hurricane season ends late Nov., but it is still wise to be thinking about next year. Nature can cause devastating results, but there are ways you can prevent basement flooding during the hurricane season. Take these preventative tips to protect your home.
  • Sump pump: Make sure your sump pump is properly working or invest in a high horsepower sump pump that is made to handle flooding. If you don't own a sump pump, hire one of our experts to install one. Our heavy duty sump pumps will pump water out of your home to prevent basement flooding.
  • Backup Sump Pump: Ordinary sump pumps depend on electricity from your home. If the power goes out during a storm, so does the normal sump pump. However, a backup sump pump continues to run because it is powered by a battery. Reliable Waterproofing installs effective battery-powered sump pumps to keep your basement safe and dry during hurricane season.
  • Yard Drainage: The outside of your home may contribute to basement flooding. If your home sits in a low area, water will flow towards your foundation. In the event of a hurricane, your basement will flood. Our team of waterproofing experts can install a drainage system to direct water from your home.
  • Gutters and Downspouts: Clogged gutters filled with debris and leaves can cause water to accumulate around your foundation. Make sure your gutters are cleaned out on a regular basis to control water run-off and prevent soil erosion around your foundation.
  • Foundation Issues: Cracks in basement walls and floors should be repaired immediately to prevent water seepage and leaks. If untreated, cracks will become wider allowing pests and other critters into your basement. Also, you can avoid basement flooding and pooling water by hiring out team to install a waterproofing system in your Virginia home.
What are the dangers of having a flooded basement? Water damage can slowly destroy your home's foundation, crawlspace and basement walls. Waiting to make repairs will only exacerbate the problem, causing you to spend more money on repairs and replacing damaged personal possessions. Some homeowners may experience health issues like allergic reactions, asthma and lung infections. Flooded basements can also compromise your home's structure, electrical units and heating equipment. Other dangers include:
  • Wood rot
  • Condensation
  • Metal rust
  • Foundation cracks
  • Basement mold and mildew 
  • Crawlspace mold and mildew
  • Foundation crumbling, flaking and chipping

Waterproofing Solutions in Virginia

If you are looking for a waterproofing system to protect your home from hurricane floods, then you come to the right place. Af Reliable, we offer sump pumps, sump pits, interior drainage systems and exterior drainage systems. Our waterproofing products are made by Earth Contact Products (ECP), the leading manufacturer in waterproofing and underpinning so you're getting the latest on the market. They are designed to protect your basement or crawlspace from excess water around your foundation. However, there are a number of benefits of having a professionally waterproofed basement in Virginia.
  • Reduces energy costs by sealing cracks and air leaks
  • Prevents health risks caused by toxic mold
  • Increases the value of your home 
  • Increases the space of your home so you can convert your basement into an extra living space
Waterproofing your basement will give you peace of mind, so you don't have to worry everytime it rains. No more mopping floors and replacing carpet! Call Reliable Waterproofing today if you need waterproofing in Virginia. We proudly serve cities within the 100 mile radius of Richmond, VA.  

Can Masonry Problems Lead to Water Problems in Your Virginia Home?

Masonry Saturation and Leakage in Virginia

Masonry can provide a good moisture barrier. However, there are factors that can lead to water leakage. Some of these factors are: Masonry saturation solutions by Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry
  • Weather exposure
  • Density of masonry surface
  • Porosity of the masonry unit or mortar joint
  • Voids in masonry
All of these play a role in how resistant the masonry is to water penetration. Saturation happens when water passes through the masonry or absorbs entirely into the masonry wall. The moisture buildup can lead to water entering the living space of your home. The most common area where masonry saturation causes leaking into the home is where the chimney passes through the roof. If you see staining on the ceiling where the chimney passes through, this is caused by masonry saturation. Another area of concern for masonry problems are room additions. The leak commonly occurs at the top of the interior opening of the addition. Any opening in a masonry structure with exposed masonry above can result in leaking. Any time exposed masonry above a room opening leaks, it is probably due to masonry saturation. If you see signs that you have water leaking into your home due to masonry saturation, the experts at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry can help.

Masonry Saturation Solutions in Virginia

The professionals at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry will come and inspect your home for masonry saturation. Some of the things we will look for and repair are:
  • Obvious voids that need tuck pointing on the exterior masonry surface
  • Check for voids in the flashing and raise the height
  • Exterior problems can be repaired with waterproofing products
When determining the cause of water leaking into your home, masonry saturation is sometimes overlooked. Leakage diagnoses can be a tedious process. Let the experts at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry give you a free inspection and find the source of the leakage and do the proper repair needed to keep water out of your home. We do brick re-pointing to keep water from entering your home. This process starts by removing any old pointing to a depth equal or slightly more than the width of the joint. Then new mortar is installed using the same color as the original mortar. The mortar will take a day to set. We have over 30 years of experience in waterproofing, foundation repair and masonry services. We will inspect your home for masonry saturation and repair the water leakage into your home. We use only the best products available for masonry repair. If you are in need of masonry repair, don't hesitate to contact the professionals at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. We have the solutions for you and will stop water leakage due to masonry saturation. Contact us today!    

Waterproofing for Virginia

Waterproofing in Virginia

Is your Virginia home or business experiencing signs of water damage? Some of these signs include water seepage, water stains, mold and mildew growth, water in your yard, wet basement, or flooding. These signs of water damage are a huge annoyance, especially for business and homeowners. Luckily you can forever avoid dealing with water damage if you call Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry today. Water in Yard Virginia, Waterproofing Virginia Do you want to know more signs? Not sure if your home or business is experiencing water damage? Or want to know some things that can cause water damage? Here are a few more signs of water damage or causes of water damage that you may notice in and around your Virginia home or business: While these problems do not necessarily mean that your home or business is close to collapse, it is not wise to ignore these problems. Unfortunately, it is likely that these water damage problems stem from foundation failure, and water will only make matters worse. Call today to get repairs by Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. We want to help clear up foundation failure and water damage from your Virginia home or business.

Waterproofing Solutions in Virginia

We are proud to say that we offer a variety of solutions for all your waterproofing needs. Whether you need to fix an existing problem (such as water seepage or a wet basement) or you just want to avoid a future water problem, waterproofing can help. We offer waterproofing services and products such as: These are all great tools to help you keep water out of your basement or crawlspace and away from your Virginia home or business, so make sure to call Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. We are a team of professionals with the experience, knowledge, and tools to help repair any problem you might have. To learn more about our waterproofing services and products, our other services like foundation repair, masonry, and concrete repair, our service area, or for a FREE estimate, give Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry a call today. We want to help you feel safe and secure in your Virginia home or business, and our services can help you get there. No matter the problem, Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry has you covered. Contact us today!

Foundation Repair for Virginia

Foundation Repair in Virginia

Do you have floor or wall cracks? How about bowing or leaning walls? Does your chimney look like its leaning? Do you ever worry about foundation failure for your Virginia home or business? Then call Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. We have the solutions for all your foundation failure, masonry, and concrete problems. While our name may suggest that we only offer waterproofing and masonry services, we offer a variety of foundation repair, waterproofing, masonry, and concrete repair options for your specific needs. If you notice things like floor or wall cracks, bowing or leaning walls, or a leaning chimney while walking around your Virginia home or business, you may be in need of foundation repairs. Not sure whether or not your home or business is being affected by foundation failure? Well we have a list of common problems that may pop up around your home or business. These can help you identify foundation failure easily, and early so that you can promptly receive foundation repairs. Some of these common problems include: foundation repair for virginia These are all signs of foundation failure. Now, you should not panic if you see these signs. They do not mean your house will collapse any second, but you should also not ignore them either. If they do mean foundation failure, ignoring them will leave the problem to get worse and worse. This could not only create more common problems around your home or business, but it could also mean more complex, time-consuming, and expensive repairs when you get them. If you notice these signs of foundation failure, call Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. We can help you identify for sure if your Virginia home or business is experiencing foundation failure. We can help repair your foundation failure with our variety of foundation repair options such as: Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry has the tools to help you fix your foundation. Give us a call today to learn more about our foundation repair, waterproofing, masonry, or concrete repair services. We want to help you feel safe and secure in your Virginia home or business, and with the help of our foundation repair services, we can help you get there. Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry has your back, no matter the problem. Contact us today!

Masonry and Brick Problems to Watch for in Your Virginia Home

Symptoms of Masonry and Brick Problems in Virginia

Masonry and brick are subject to deterioration, especially at the mortar Brick and masonry repair in Northern Virginiajoints. Mortar consists primarily of lime and sand so over time, this lime and sand can deteriorate due to rain and other sources of water. Look around your Northern Virginia home and look for some of the symptoms of masonry and brick problems such as:
  • Settlement cracks - These masonry cracks are usually stair-step cracks in your masonry. 
  • Expansion cracks - A vertical of stair-step crack that is usually located in the upper portions of the masonry can be caused by thermal expansion. Bricks expand when heated by the sun and if expansion joints are not present, can cause cracks.
  • Steel expansion cracks - Cracks that occur at the upper corners of doorways, garage doors, or windows is usually caused by the steel lintels that support the masonry above these openings.
  • Bulging or bowed wall cracks - Cracks can appear throughout an entire wall or the wall is bulged or bowed. This is usually the symptom of age related failure due to improper reinforcement of the masonry.
If you see any of these signs of masonry or brick problems, contact the professionals at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. We have the solutions for your masonry and brick problems. 

Brick and Masonry Solutions from Reliable for Virginia Homes

Water entering through any voids you may have in your masonry or brick [caption id="attachment_681" align="alignright" width="300"]Masonry and brick repair in Richmond, VA After re-pointing[/caption] can cause significant damage to your home. Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry uses the process of re-pointing to remove any old point to a depth of equal to or slightly more than the width of the joint. Depending on the depth of the joint, one or more pases will be made with the mortar and we will match the color of the current mortar. The mortar will take a day to set and cure. You can be reassured that the products we use are the best in the industry and the new mortar will match the original mortar type, color and texture of the existing mortar to avoid incompatible materials and make sure that it looks good as new. Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry can also repair any chimney repair you needs. Don't ignore a chimney that is leaning or is in need of brick repair. This can be a danger to you and your home. For any of your masonry and brick repair in the Northern Virginia area including the cities of Richmond, Petersburg, and Hanover, contact the professionals at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. We have over 30 years of experience in the Northern Virginia area. We will get your masonry and brick repair done and your home will look like new. Don't let the cracks in your bricks be ignored. The sooner they are repaired, the least amount of damage that will occur to your home. Contact us today!

Common Water Problems in Richmond, VA

What are the most Common Reasons for Waterproofing in Virginia?

wet-basement-blogWhen you discover water in your basement, it is time to act quickly. Wet basements can cause mold growth, damage furnishings, structure damage, and affect your health. Without proper waterproofing, the problem will get worse over time. At Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry, we can identify the source of your water issues to prevent water damage to your home. We are the waterproofing experts for the residents in Richmond, VA and the surrounding cities. So what causes damp basements, and how can they be prevented in the first place? The most common causes of wet basement are due to the following issues:
  • Leaky Basements - Leaks are caused by clogged gutters and drains. Improper downspouts also cause leaks through basement walls from outside or down the ceiling from upper rooms.
  • Water in Yard - Pooling water in your yard causes basement floods and leaks. Make sure you have proper drainage to allow water to divert away from the foundation.
  • Water Seepage - Excess water causes wall cracks and settlement. As the water builds up, it presses against the basement walls causing cracking. Water seeps through the cracks, creating water puddles on your basement floor.
  • Cracks - Cracks can form on doors, walls, window frames or floors. Also look for soft spots and discolorations on the walls.
  • Condensation - Condensation usually occurs during the summer. During hot summers, the basement becomes cool making the humidity levels rise. This can also be caused by water vapor in the basement from washing.
  • Poor soil conditions - Poor soil conditions can cause soil erosion
  • Plumbing leaks - This could lead to soil erosion and settlement.
Look for signs that you have water problems. They can determine the type of water issue your home is having and locate the source. Some indicators include:
  • Rust stains
  • Insect infestation
  • Wood rot
  • Mold and mildew
  • Mineral deposits on surfaces
  • Water stains or dampness
  • Stained carpet
If you have any of these issues, give us a call so we can inspect your home.

Solutions for your Common Water Problems in Richmond, VA

waterproofing-homeOne of the best ways to reduce water problems in your home is to get a basement waterproofing system. Our company provides free estimates with accurate information about waterproofing. We offer the following waterproofing systems:
  • Sump Pumps - removes water that is collected into the sump basin or pit
  • Battery Backup Sump Pumps - protects against flooding when your power goes out
  • Sump Pits - the unique design of the sump pit makes the sump pump system more efficient and effective
  • Interior Drainage Systems - a water management system that relieves excess water from surrounding the foundation and directs it to the sump pump system
  • Exterior Drainage Systems - used to divert water away from the foundation and prevents settlement
All of the waterproofing solutions are ways to prevent water problems from occurring in your basement. We'll find the best solution that fits your waterproofing needs. We understand that every waterproofing issue is different. Contact us for a free estimate. We service Richmond, Virginia and the surrounding cities.

Northern Virginia Foundation Repair and Waterproofing Solutions

Reliable Serves all of Northern Virginia for Foundation and Waterproofing Needs

Reliable is well known for their masonry solutions in Virginia. But did you know we also offer the highest quality foundation repair solutions and waterproofing solutions in Northern Virginia? Virginia is known for heavy rain falls throughout the year. This can wreak havoc on foundations and basements. Water will find the path of least resistance, and if you have foundation cracks, wall cracks, bowing or leaning walls, or other foundation problems, you are going to end up with a wet basement.

So How can Reliable Help with Foundation Repair Solutions?

We can inspect the inside and outside of your home. We will look for the problems that are signs of foundation failure. We will look for the following things inside your Northern Virginia home: Outside we will look for: If we see these signs, we will find the best solution for your home and budget. There are many different options for both waterproofing and foundation repair.

Waterproofing Solutions for Norther VirginiaSump pumps remove water from wet basements in Northern Virginia

We offer both interior and exterior waterproofing solutions. If water builds up around or under your foundation it could find it's way into your home. We can use a combination of solutions to resolve this. Sump pumps can pump water out and away from your home's foundation. We use battery backup sump pumps to ensure that you are protected even when the power goes out. We can install a drainage system from inside to the outside of your home to assist in moving water away from your foundation and toward the street. We offer the highest quality in sump pumps and sump pits and drainage products from Earth Contact Products. With our service and ECP products you can be sure that your basement will remain dry.

Helical Tieback Wall Anchors Add Support for Bowing Walls in Northern VirginiaFoundation Repair Solutions for Northern Virginia

Reliable offers underpinning products that can add support and lift for foundations that are settling and sinking. Helical piers and resistance piers from ECP can be installed easily and without much disturbance to your yard and home. Slab piers can be installed to lift your concrete slab and level it out if there has been settlement or sinking with your garage slab or slab foundation. We will find the right foundation repair product for your specific situation and to fit your budget. Call Reliable today to learn all about our foundation repair products and solutions. We are a trusted foundation contractor in the Northern Virginia area, and we only use the most trusted products from ECP. We look forward to helping you protect the investment you have in your Northern Virginia home.

Common Masonry Problems

Professional Masonry Virginia

When it comes to your masonry, you want to make sure to have the best quality. You want masonry that will last and looks good, too. Your brick walls go through a lot, Mother Nature is not very gentle. Between seasonal changes, storms, temperature changes, and the everyday wear and tear, your masonry will obviously encounter some problems. So, in order to keep your masonry in its best shape, you need to avoid, and take care of, some of the common masonry problems. Some problems include:
  • Efflorescence
  • Spalling
  • Settlement cracks
  • Washed out areas/ Rust stains
  • Loose Plaster
  • Mold or algae growth

Causes and Solutions for Masonry Virginia

Masonry Virginia

Efflorescence is when a chalky white powder appears on the exterior of the bricks. This is caused by moisture being trapped inside the brick reacting with the salts inside. Usually this problem will disappear with the seasons, but will come back for as long as the moisture is not removed. Spalling is when the bricks start cracking and flaking because of, again, moisture working itself into the brick. This causes the face of the brick to fall off and leave the bricks useless. Settlement cracks not only have a negative effect on your masonry, but also mean deeper problems with your home's foundation. Settlement cracks happen when the foundation of your home starts to sink and settle into voids left by the expansion and contraction of the soil from moisture levels. Washed out areas and rust stains are mostly cosmetic problems that affect the outside of your brick walls. Rust stains occur when a metal fixture corrodes and the resulting rust washes down the wall's surface during a rain storm or poor drainage. Rusting nails below the paint surface can also cause the typical brown stain. Washed out areas are simply caused by large amounts of moisture causing water stains on your masonry. Loose plaster can be caused by a variety of things. Whether the weather, like wind or rain, or settlement, loose plaster is a very common problem with masonry, but, luckily, is relatively easy to fix. Mold or algae growth occurs when a leaking gutter or downspout leave moisture behind that encourages the growth of mold, mildew, and/or algae. Unfortunately, even the smallest damp spot can cause these to pop up. All of these different problems are fairly common when it comes to masonry, and most of them are relatively easy to fix. They're even easier to fix when you call Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. Just remember to give us a call. We're happy to help with all of your masonry Virginia problems. We've got a great team of experienced professionals who are ready to help you with masonry repair or waterproofing issue you have. Call today!  

What is Brick Re-Pointing?

Brick Re-Pointing Virginia

No matter what, if you have masonry in or around your home, you can be sure that the elements will have major effects on it. Rain, wind, and frost all can have negative effects on you masonry, and along with time, wear and tear, and decay, you brick walls will need some extra help to keep them in their best shape. If not taken care of, the pointing will begin to crack and create voids, letting in water and moisture that will get into your bricks and into your home. This will allow mold and mildew to grow in and around your home, and since half of the air you breathe in your home comes from your basement, it's safest to get rid of that moisture as soon as possible. It will also cause cracking in your walls and foundation, water stains, and damage to your possessions, it's just smart to get this problem fixed as soon as possible.

Professionals in Brick Re-Pointing VirginiaBrick Re-Pointing Virginia

The first part of the re-pointing process is to remove any old pointing to a depth equal to or slightly more than the width of the joint. Depending on the depth of the joint one or more passes will be made with the mortar (which can be made to match the current color of your mortar). The mortar will then take about a day to set up and cure. It is very important to make sure that the joint profile is rectangular as the new mortar used needs ample chance to bond with the existing masonry. We try very to hard to match up our mortar to your original mortar, this is important to the process, because they need to have similar characteristics such as strength and permeability. We want to make sure your home, and its masonry, is in great shape all the time. We can help you do that. We have a great team of experienced professionals who are knowledgeable in all of our waterproofing and masonry repairs and processes. We at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry are ready to help you with all your brick re-pointing Virginia needs. Give us a call today!

Common Signs Your Foundation Needs Repair

 Foundation Repair Virginia

The foundation is an integral part of any home or structure.  It absorbs the weight of the home and evenly distributes it to the ground below.  So if your foundation is damaged or has cracks, its ability to distribute weight will be inhibited. This could result in wall cracks, sticking, windows and doors, and home settlement. Foundation problems can be scary, but as long as you know the warning signs and contact Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry as soon as possible, the we will fix the problem before it becomes to problematic or expensive. We are your Foundation Repair Virginia experts.  Foundation Repair Virginia, Foundation Repair Richmond, VA There are a multitude of small signs to look out for when it comes to foundation damage.  These include bowing and leaning walls, wall cracks, sticking doors and windows, and leaning chimney. Bowing and leaning basement walls are the result of external soil pressure pushing into the home.  If not taken care of it could result in some serious foundation stability issues. Wall cracks occur when the home settles.  Meaning, a section of the foundation has sunk into the soil. This is the same issues that results in sticking doors and windows. Finally a leaning chimney is a result of the foundation settling and pulling away from the chimney, possibly leaving it detached from the home. If you notice any of these problems, contact us immediately.  They could soon lead to more serious foundation issues. Foundation Repair Richmond, VA Here at Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry we have the techniques and products to insure that your home is restored to its original condition. Through use of helical piers and steel push piers our expert employees will raise your settling home to its designated elevation. With wall anchors we can restore the look and strength of any bowing walls. Finally, our masonry specialists will fix any cracking that might have occurred during settlement. Give Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry a call today! We are your Foundation Repair Richmond, VA providers.

What is Brick Re-pointing?

Brick Re-pointing VA

Brick homes are elegant and economically smart investments. They are the go-to choice for people interested in helping the environment and their wallets. For starters, brick is made of clay, an abundant natural product. It will easily last you 100 years or more. It also minimizes CO2 emissions by using less energy for heating and cooling year after year. Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry works helps the Virginia area in all of their Brick Re-pointing needs. Brick re-pointing will restore the look of your beautiful brick home, in addition to restoring the functionality of the insulation properties of bricks.  For all of your Brick Re-Pointing needs call Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry we are your Brick Re-Pointing VA experts.Brick Re-pointing VA The pointing of the bricks is the external facing mortar. Over time the changing temperatures and weather conditions will take a toll on the condition of the pointing.  If not take care of properly, these conditions could create voids in the pointing. Holes in the pointing will catch water and moisture, resulting in mold and mildew. Mold releases spores into the air that could have a negative affect on you and your family's health. The longer you leave the pointing of your bricks in poor condition, the more problematic and expensive the situation could become. If you notice issues with your brick pointing call Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry today. Our expert masonry specialists can fix the pointing in your home.  The first step in the repair process is to remove the damaged area of the brick pointing.  We then proceed to create a new mortar solution that is as close to the original mortar in quality, consistency, permeability, and strength. Then we will proceed to fill the areas that were damaged by the elements.  While this process may sound simple, you will want to contact a professional! Call us today! We are your Brick Re-Pointing VA provider.