6 Basement Waterproofing Products to Protect Your Space From Moisture

Kelly Weimert
Written by Kelly Weimert
Updated February 21, 2022
basement storage with cement floor
Photo: laughingmango / Getty Images

Highlights

  • Injection resin products are ideal for fixing concrete cracks, leaks, and gaps that can lead to basement moisture.

  • Liquid-applied and sheet membranes can waterproof whole basements.

  • Admixtures plug concrete holes from the inside, creating an integral waterproofing solution.

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Basements can add a lot of value to your home and lifestyle, from increasing your storage to expanding your livable square footage with spaces like a guest room, game room, or art studio. However, their location near or under the ground means that basements are more susceptible to water damage than other spaces. Fortunately, there are several types of basement waterproofing products you can use to protect your basement.

Whether you need to fix a small crack or you want to waterproof the entire space, the following basement waterproofing products will help keep your basement clean, dry, and ready to take on whatever life throws its way. 

1. Liquid-Applied Membrane

Liquid-applied membranes (LAMs) are bonded coating solutions, often containing bitumen, commonly used to waterproof basements and other areas prone to moisture. Once the liquid cures, it becomes a fully waterproof, rubber-like coating that prevents water from seeping into cracks and gaps in substrates, like asphalt and concrete. 

In addition to basements, LAMs can be used to waterproof roofs. This basement waterproofing solution usually costs around $60 per one-gallon bucket, and it's easily applied with a sprayer, roller, or paintbrush. You can also call a waterproofing contractor to install it for you. 

2. Sheet Membrane

orange sheet membrane to waterproof floor
Photo: pololia / Adobe Stock

Sheet membranes are similar to LAMs, but they come in rolls or sheets rather than liquid form. Thanks to a peel-and-stick design, sheet membranes are relatively easy to apply, and they usually cost around $100 to $200 per pack or roll. However, fitting the sheets together during installation can create small seams that will potentially let in moisture—a problem you won't have with a LAM. 

3. Cementitious Waterproofing

Cementitious waterproofing solutions are composed of cement and a waterproofing agent, like a synthetic emulsion polymer, to create a moisture barrier. It’s often considered the easiest basement waterproofing method to apply—you can simply spray it on. It’s also relatively affordable and quite effective at preventing mold and mildew. A five-gallon bucket of cementitious waterproofing usually costs around $40

4. Injection Epoxy Resin

man using epoxy on cement basement floor
Photo: Zelma / Adobe Stock

You can inject epoxy resin directly into concrete, masonry, and natural stone structures, at which point it will create a permanent watertight seal. This product repairs and waterproofs cracks, gaps, and other damage that can lead to moisture problems. And because it's considered permanent, it can sometimes be used in lieu of a full-structural repair, potentially saving thousands of dollars. You can purchase an epoxy crack repair kit for about $100 to $200

5. Admixtures

Admixtures create what's called integral waterproofing. Integral waterproofing with admixtures involves plugging concrete's natural capillaries and holes from within, thereby making the concrete impermeable to moisture. You can often find admixtures for around $100 to $200 per five-gallon bucket, but prices vary depending on the type and amount. There are three types of admixtures: crystalline, densifier, and water repellent formulations. 

  • Crystalline: Crystalline admixtures consist of microscopic crystals that grow to seal pores and cracks once water hits them. This is the only admixture that's "self-healing" (it will grow new crystals whenever new water-holding cracks form). 

  • Densifier: Densifiers usually contain silica fume, which has a particle size small enough to fill microscopic concrete pores. Densifiers essentially strengthen the concrete, so they're ideal in areas where high-strength concrete is needed. 

  • Water Repellent: Usually composed of a stearate or petroleum-based oil, water repellent formulations cause water to bead on concrete surfaces, preventing it from penetrating the concrete and causing moisture damage. 

6. Interior French Drain

Interior French drains collect water and direct it away from your home's foundation. They're typically installed along your basement's perimeter to prevent flooding and other water damage. Although they don't technically waterproof your basement's walls and floors, French drains can help keep water from flowing there in the first place. French drains cost around $50 to $100 per linear foot.

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