Leaking hatchway doors are a nuisance for homeowners who'd like their basement to be dry -- especially in a finished basement.
When you waterproof your basement, you'll want to be able to count on it to be dry -- and to stay dry from that point on. If your basement is flooding from the stairs and hatchway entryway, then the job is not done.
Understanding how hatchway doors are designed can help you see how they leak.
Hatchway entrances are typically constructed separately from the foundation walls. This entryway is usually designed as a concrete shell that's bolted on to the foundation walls after they're built. Often, stairs will come already built in.
Next, metal doors are fixed on top. If necessary, the stairs are built inside, and the construction is completed. These hatchways are usually not sealed to the foundation walls.
Basement entryways leak from three critical points:
1. Underneath Metal Hatchway Doors
Metal hatchway doors are not flush with the concrete frame they're attached to. As rain builds up on the doors, it will slide down the doors and pool on the concrete around the edges of the doors.
From this point, the water has two paths that it can follow -- it can either continue to flow down to the ground, or it will slip underneath the metal hatchway door and onto the stairs inside.
2. Where The Hatchway And Foundation Meet
The concrete shell of the hatchway is mounted to the foundation walls via bolts, which are drilled through the concrete of the foundation.
Because it's rare for this joining point to be sealed by the contractors, it is a major weak point where water can flood through.
As groundwater builds up around the foundation during a rain event, it presses in on this weak spot and allows flooding.
3. Through Cracks In The Concrete
Like any concrete structure, a hatchway will begin to crack over time. Water will flood through these cracks, move to the stairs and end up in your basement.
Some old-fashioned hatchway doors were built with loose panels of wood (instead of metal), with little or no attempt to keep water out. Water easily floods through the gaps in these doors.
Once water builds up in a hatchway entrance, the puddles will expand into the basement.
Whether your hatchway doors are leaking or you have some other basement flooding problem, your local waterproofing experts at Foundation Systems of Michigan have the solution you need. From leaky hatchways to flooding floors, iron ochre issues, wall cracks, and more, we have it all!
We'd like to meet with you and show how we can make your basement dry -- all the time! Contact us today to schedule your free basement waterproofing quote!
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