Water Problems

What you might not be aware

Water problems can show themselves in many different ways.  The two most common questions we are asked regarding water problems is:

How do I know if I have a water problem? Sometimes it is obvious, but sometimes it is not.

How does the water get in?

Below are the six biggest indicators of an active water problem. Further below shows all of the various ways water can get into your home.

Standing Water

If there is water on the floor ranging from a small puddle, or several feet, then you obviously have a water problem. Assuming you have ruled out any possible plumbing or HVAC leak, then it is time to call us!

Wood Rot

Wood Rot

If you see exposed wood that looks like it is rotting away, then you can be sure water has been there more than once.  Prime suspects for this type of damage are: the bottom of basement stairs, the bottom of any interior door jams, baseplates in finished basements, and carpet tacking strips.

Calcification / Efflorescence

These terms are generally used by contractors to mean the same thing.  When water comes into contact with stone, cement, or cinderblock, it leaches out the minerals and leaves behind a salt deposit.  This looks like white, chalky, somtimes fluffy crystal like marks on the floor or walls.  Nothing other than water can cause these marks.  If you see it, then you KNOW there is a water issue


This one should be pretty obvious.  You can’t have mud without water.  But don’t just chalk it up to being ‘an old basement’.  The mud should not be there.  If it is, then there is a problem that has not been properly addressed.


This one is a little bit trickier.  Mold could be a sign of an active water problem, but it could also be a sign of a moisture problem.  Although both are ultimately caused by water, there is a difference in how they are treated.  But if you see mold, make sure you exhaust all possibilities in finding a water problem – because you will NEVER solve a mold problem without first solving the source of the water or moisture.

Insect/Rodent Activity

Insects and rodents are attracted to wet and moist environments.  If you notice increased insect activity when you go down into your basement, chances are you’ve got more than just a bug problem.