Skip to Main Content

Ohio Basement Systems is now Ohio Basement Authority.  Learn more here.

Faulty installed sump pump

4 Reasons You Should Not Attempt DIY Home Waterproofing

Before you spend your money on DIY basement waterproofing kits, you need to know the dangers of self-help and DIY repairs.

Schedule Free Inspection

From filling cracks to painting walls with water-resistant paint, home DIY waterproofing looks attractive and pretty straightforward. A lot of Cleveland, OH, homeowners are tempted to go this route. It’s cheaper and you have the leeway to do what you want, in theory. What most people don’t know is that DIY home waterproofing is a bad idea. 

You can fix tiny cracks through a simple DIY after watching a 10-minute how-to video on YouTube. But if you’re talking about fixing leaky basement walls or floor cracks, that’s a different ball game. Whether it’s troubleshooting or fixing water problems, leave the professionals to do their job. 

badly installed sump pump

Dangers of DIY Home Waterproofing 

Unless you’re trained and licensed to work as a waterproofing contractor, you shouldn’t attempt DIY basement waterproofing. Perhaps these reasons will make you rethink your decision. 

Waste time and money. Let nobody fool you. Basement waterproofing is a tough job. Your DIY enthusiasm can’t prepare you for the rigors of basement waterproofing. 

Less-than-satisfactory results. With DIY, things can go wrong. You can settle for the wrong solution, get the timing wrong, and do improper installation. You’ll end up with a badly waterproofed basement that’ll still leak and cause problems. 

Accidents and slips/falls. Every repair job has its dangers and pitfalls. If you’re not properly geared, you can hurt yourself or your loved ones. And your project will stall as you will be out nursing your wounds. 

Costly in the long run. DIY basement waterproofing kits don’t have a guarantee. And if they do, it’s for a short period. Any loopholes or weaknesses will work against you. At the end of the day, you’ll have wasted money and time on a solution that doesn’t protect your basement fully. You’ll end up hiring a pro for water damage repair and to fix the mess you have made. 

While you can seal the basement with a DIY kit, you may end up masking a serious issue that’ll crop up a few months down the road. That’s why it’s important to get an expert who can apply the right fix the first time. 

DIY Waterproofing Mistakes 

Far too many people make the following mistakes when attempting home basement DIY waterproofing. 

Failing to locate the source of water. Basement walls are porous, meaning you can see streaks of wetness. But what happens if the entire wall is wet? If you don’t have a trained eye, you can’t tell whether the water is originating from mortar joints, window corners, around water pipes, cracks, or elsewhere. 

Repairing walls with standing water. It’s fairly common for basement walls with cracks to allow an inch or two of water in during the rainy season. Some homeowners proceed with inspecting and fixing the cracks with water under their feet. Big mistake. When you work in this environment, you risk being electrocuted. 

Forgetting window well leaks. Another area that’s often ignored is leaks on the windows well. These fixtures tend to retain water if the drainage system is poorly installed during home construction. Left unchecked, water will pool around the bottom of the window and seep into the basement. 

Not filling cracks with commercial-grade sealants. A lot of homeowners go for cheap fillers instead of commercial-grade sealants thinking they’ll do the perfect job. Basement wall cracks have to be filled with hydraulic cement. This type of cement has additives that make it expand and set rapidly when it’s mixed with water. If you don’t get the right consistency or apply the cement quickly, the cracks won’t seal properly. And if the cracks are significant enough and impacting the wall’s stability, specialized foundation repair solutions may be needed. 

Save Time and Money with Expert Waterproofing 

Professional basement waterproofing beats DIY and self-help remedies hands down. Experts can troubleshoot the cause of basement cracks and underlying issues better than anyone with an untrained eye and do a thorough job. 
Don’t attempt a do-it-yourself remedy with your basement. Let waterproofing experts like the ones at Ohio Basement Systems tackle the job. We have the tools, experience, and expertise to do flawless waterproofing. Best of all, we will recommend industry-approved waterproofing solutions that are designed to last. Be sure to request a free waterproofing inspection today.

Publish Date:

Last Modified Date:

Ohio Basement Systems Service Map

Our Locations


1 Marion Ave, Suite 309
Mansfield, OH 44903
(567) 275-8588


7950 Bavaria Rd.
Twinsburg, OH 44087
(330) 235-1229


159 Crocker Park Blvd, 4th floor
Westlake, OH 44145
(330) 235-1229


35475 Vine St, Suite 216,
Willowick, OH 44095
(440) 332-4339


8531 Market St.
Youngstown, OH 44512
(330) 400-3783