Top 10 Questions To Ask Your Waterproofing Contractor
It’s every homeowner’s nightmare. Your home is leaking and your basement (and all of the belongings within) are in jeopardy.
The anxiety sets in and the first question is: who can we call for help? Is it a waterproofing contractor that we need?
You need a professional to come in and assess the situation but worry that you will not know the right questions to ask.
We know how stressful this can be. Knowledge is power and the more prepared you are to speak to a waterproofing contractor the better equipped you’ll be when it comes time to make educated decisions.
And most importantly, trust that you’re getting the best advice from the trained professional who is evaluating the situation.
Here are the Top 10 Questions To Ask A Waterproofing Contractor
1. How Long Have You Been In Business?
The longer the company has been in business the more likely they are to have the skills and expertise to solve your waterproofing problems. Be wary of contractors who are not willing to give you the specifics on how long the business has been around. This is usually a sign that the contractor is not familiar with the company history, or that the company has not been in business for very long and may not have the level of expertise you are looking for.
2. Are Your Workers Insured?
Here is one of the most important questions to ask and it’s surprising how few questions we get about liability and insurance. Without proper insurance, you may not be protected from liability if something goes wrong on the job.
Make sure the waterproofing company has workers compensation and liability insurance, not just general construction or office insurance.
The difference is that if something were to happen on the job and the proper insurance is not in place, neither the homeowner or the company would be covered. Make sure that the company you hire is fully bonded and insured, that way both you and your home are protected in the event of an accident.
RCC is fully bonded, licensed and insured including WSIB coverage and HST registration.
3. What is the Real Solution to my Problem?
There are many issues that can cause moisture in your basement and in many cases, the real solution is not necessarily to waterproof. You may have a problem with your plumbing or need to replace a leaky window.
— RCC Waterproofing (@RCCWaterproofer) February 11, 2016
A trained professional will perform a water test to troubleshoot what the real issue is and where there could be a crack in the foundation.
By properly assessing the source of the moisture and what the real problem is, the waterproofing contractor can provide a real solution, even if it’s to refer you to another trade to solve the problem.
4. Are There Different Options?
Familiarize yourself with the different options you have when it comes to waterproofing your basement. In most cases, waterproofing from the outside of the home is the best option.
The benefits of exterior waterproofing are that your home’s foundation is protected from the water, making your foundation walls more structurally sound. In some cases, exterior waterproofing may not be the best option and the work has to be done from the inside.
The benefits of internal waterproofing can be a lower cost, or it may be the only option due to limited space or access to the foundation from the exterior. Be sure to get a detailed analysis from your contractor as to the difference between external and internal waterproofing and how each option could be applied to your wet basement.
5. What Is The Best Solution To My Problem?
A trained professional will be able to give you an honest answer as to the best option for you. The primary objective is to keep your basement dry and your home protected from moisture. If this means having to dig up your front garden to get to a problematic crack in your foundation and protect your home from future leaks, that is the best option despite how inconvenient it may seem.
The goal is to protect your home for the long term, not provide a temporary “band-aid” solution that may only keep your basement dry for the short term.
6. What Kind Of Materials Do You Use?
Your waterproofing contractor should be well-versed in the various products and materials used during the waterproofing process. It’s a good idea to visit their website to see if they have a products page that outlines and explains what each product is and it’s unique properties. For instance, we at RCC use a product called Hydro Guard which is an elastomeric, liquid applied, emulsified asphalt membrane designed for waterproofing walls and other structures.
Because it’s an applied liquid, the application is seamless and can truly protect your foundation against water, not just dampness.
Basement waterproofing can be a big and expensive job. Be sure to ask if the work is guaranteed and what is covered if there is a problem with the job or if there is a re-leak. For example, the RCC offers a Lifetime Waterproofing Guarantee!
8. Is There Anything I Can Do To Prevent My Basement From Leaking?
There are a few tips that we provide during our initial inspection. Make sure that your eaves troughs are clean and free of debris. It is important, especially in the spring, to make sure that there is proper drainage and that water is moving away from your property.
Inside the house, you can make sure that your drains are not backed up and it’s also important to maintain and check on the home’s sump pump. RCC founder Tony Romanelli recently spoke to The Toronto Star on how homeowners can take preventative measures to avoid a wet basement.
9. Can You Provide References?
A professional waterproofing contractor should be able to provide you with references and should be more than happy to do so. You can also check the company’s website to see if they have a Reviews page. Video reviews can also be extremely re-assuring and will demonstrate how the company values its customers and provides a level of professionalism when it comes to solving your wet basement problem.
10. Can I Come And Visit Your Office?
Although you may never need to visit the office of your waterproofing contractor, it’s reassuring to know that the company has an office and operates like a professional business. Check the company’s website for an About Us or Contact Us page to make sure there is an office address. We at RCC have locations across the GTA and also have a page on our website specifically dedicated to Our Team. As a family owned and operated business, it’s important that each member of our team is recognized as a member of the RCC family.
Some of these questions are not simple to answer, but an honest contractor should provide you with options that are in your best interest.
Your home is your most treasured asset and it’s important to be thorough in your research. Make sure you choose a waterproofing contractor that has your best interest in mind and is committed to solving your #1 problem: a wet basement!
RCC Waterproofing and Foundation Repairs has been servicing Ontario customers for 96 years. Their repairs have outlived lifetime warranties by at least two times. The company provides professionally trained sales representatives to view, assess and quote on repairs. The installers are employees of RCC and most have long term working relationships. RCC carries full insurance including WSIB coverage and HST registration.
RCC Waterproofing offers:
- A Lifetime Waterproofing Guarantee!
- Fully trained technical sales representatives to view, access and quote the repair
- 96 years of third-generation family success both in products and services and superb warranty
- Full-service options, providing either exterior or interior repairs depending on issues, location, and structure
- A successful record of servicing over 75,000 customers