Now we have basement walls, so the next step is to add gravel to the floor of the basement. A huge pile of gravel is added to the job site and spread over the dirt of the basement floor.
Next Up – Gravel and Tar
The gravel under the floor of a basement foundation helps drain any water from under the foundation. It makes it easier to make the thickness of the concrete even when pouring the concrete for the basement floor. The benefits of controlling the thickness of the concrete allows the basement floor to be stable in a frost situation and it won’t crack as easily. Now I see why house plans with basement foundations are a bit tedious, but worth the investment.
Next, a black substance is added to the outside walls of our basement foundation. This tar-like substance adds a layer of waterproofing to the exterior of the concrete. This is the only chance to add this layer, so it’s important to get it on there before the grading of our lot occurs. This tar substance is known by builders to be temporary and if the foundation settles, the material is brittle and cracks. It’s a safeguard builder’s use, but keep in mind, most foundations settle a bit over time, so the chance of leaks still occurs even after using this product.
Safeguard Against Flooding
Anything extra to keep from having a flood in your home is worth it. You definitely don’t want to deal with flooding in your home. A flood is devastating and cleanup is a miserable task, so I’m happy to see the gravel down and tar added to the walls, so we’re more protected.
This is exactly the reason why basements are not welcome typically in Southern states or coastal regions and they are never shown as an option with beach and coastal house plans. The shallow water table is the main culprit for this foundation option not being available. States with a considerable amount of wetland and coastline have too much water under the ground for a basement to be built. Thank goodness we live in the Midwest because basements are a secure place offering safety from violent storms and a great spot for a safe room, and they allow plenty of storage, or expansion area for the future.
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