You might think you’ve thought of it all. You’ve got great drainage around the foundation, your pipes are far enough away from the house, and your sump pump is working as well as it possibly could! You are prepared for anything! Except… ANIMALS!
Now there’s a strange sound in your basement. A scritch scritch. It sounds almost like… digging.
What are these tiny animals really capable of?
Animals can indeed cause foundational and drainage issues, and they can be often the worst kind of problems: extremely unpredictable ones. You might be able to predict where a root grows, you could get rid of rocks, but can you get inside the head of a mole? Nope. They’re unpredictable. They can weaken the soil, provide water with a place to sit by the foundation walls, even damage the weeping tile system.
There are certain measures you can take to prevent animal-related drainage and foundation problems.
A Good Defense Is Great Offense
The best way to prevent burrowing animals from wreaking havoc to your basement and foundation is to waterproof your basement the right way right away. Make it as tight as possible from the get go, and moles, mice, rats, and whatever else won’t even be able to get next to your foundation.
The best way to keep them away? Make a wall. Crushed round stone will act as a barrier between the soil and your foundation, it does more than effectively drain water. It deters burrowing animals, keeping them away from the walls and preventing them from weakening them. As well, add cement, blocks, and other impenetrable features to your landscaping to prevent animals from digging next to and underneath your foundation. Make sure you’ve cleared the area of animals first!
Another thing to do is to put guards in place that keep rodents out of necessary openings, or close them off if they aren’t necessary. If you have a brick home, you might have little slits in the walls called weep holes. They help ventilate the inner wall cavity to prevent moisture damage, which is great, but they could also provide a little open door for mice. Seal off these holes, or put mesh or wire guards in front of them.
What Not To Do
Now that we’ve told you what you should be doing, we feel confident in telling you what not to do. Don’t go with a waterproofing membrane! They are very susceptible to tearing, and the little claws of small burrowing animals will make quick work of them. Once that tear is in, it can quickly grow, and moisture can damage your foundation, causing a costly repair job.
Suffering from animal damage? Want to keep them from ever getting close to you? Give us a call! Maybe call an exterminator or animal control first.