Having water flowing down your basement stairs can be a big issue in older homes, and it can open the door to mold and a host of other issues. Luckily, there are ways to nip this nasty problem in the bud in any home, and most are pretty easy to do in a weekend or with minimal help from a drainage contractor like Budget Drainage. Here are three ideas for keeping water out of your bulkhead and getting some peace of mind while you're at it.
Divert Your Downspouts
By far the most common issues associated with drainage can be attributed to a downspout that needs to be moved or extended. If your downspouts don't properly divert water away from your foundation and bulkhead, then you should first make sure that they end past where your bulkhead opens out to your yard, as well as past where water could flow backwards downhill toward the bulkhead. Then, if your downspouts are angled improperly, try testing where the water goes by pouring a bottle of water down the gutter or downspout on a dry day and examining where it flows. If it's toward your bulkhead, then you should try adjusting the downspout to an orientation that doesn't let water run in the wrong direction.
Bulk Up Your Bulkhead
Adding some extra material in between the water source and your bulkhead is another simple yet effective solution to this issue. If possible, adding a layer or two of brick to the concrete foundation of your bulkhead can solve this issue, but make sure to clearly demarcate it to avoid constructing a trip hazard. Adding a small pile of gravel is a slightly easier solution, and is less likely to cause as much of a trip hazard as a solid stack of brick.
"Channel" Your Inner City Planner
Channel drains are extremely useful for keeping water out of tight spots, which is why so many people choose this option for keeping water out of garages with driveways that are angled downward. These drains are also pretty easy to install around the periphery of your bulkhead in order to catch the water before it comes flowing down the stairs. Perhaps the hardest part of this task is avoiding underground utilities, so make sure to either call your utilities companies and ask for a mark-out or hire a contractor to do that work for you along with the excavation.