Q&A

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American Waterworks Q&A

How much do your services cost?

The price range can vary depending on the service and severity of the issue. We offer free no-obligation estimates so that homeowners can receive an accurate quote for their project.

Why is annual maintenance necessary?

Dirt and sediment build-up in a sump pump liner can cause pump failure and if that happens you get flooded. Your sump pump is an electro-mechanical device that needs to be maintained just like your car. Neglecting to get your pump serviced can result in water in your basement. For foundation repair, it is also important to have your wall repair systems inspected and tightened over time. You can request an annual maintenance by clicking HERE.

To learn more about why getting annual maintenance is important, click HERE

Do I need to do anything in preparation for my free estimate?

No preparation is needed but the Design Specialist calls the homeowner before the appointment and they may request something in order to have better vision.

Are you looking to request and schedule your free estimate today? It's easy! Click HERE to fill out our online form.

Do I need to be there for my free estimate?

We do require somebody to be there so we can go over the full scope of issues and properly report our findings in order to discuss options for repair.

Click HERE to learn what the eight pro trips are when it comes to choosing the right contractor. 

What is your service area?

We service Minnesota, North Dakota, western Wisconsin, and northeast Iowa. To see a detailed list of counties we serve, click HERE

Why can't you provide a quote over the phone?

Our Design Specialists are certified and trained to inspect all areas that could potentially cause problems. We offer a wide range of solutions for each problem so our experts need to go over all potential solutions and right-size the project for the customer's needs. In-person inspections are required so that we can provide a complete solution.

Read our blog to learn why choosing the right contractor is important, and what the benefits are of an on-site inspection

Why is water leaking into my basement?

Basements can flood from pretty much anywhere, such as from walls, windows, floor cracks, stairways, or pipes. The most common causes of basement leaks are due to the pressure created by water found in the soil surrounding your foundation.

To learn more about why basements leak and how we can fix it, click HERE

Why is an interior drainage system better than an exterior one?

Interior drainage systems are longer-lasting and more durable than exterior drainage systems. This is because exterior drainage systems can clog up with dirt and become useless over time. When the system gets clogged, it is difficult to access since they are buried underground or beneath landscaping, and therefore becomes nearly impossible to flush out the system. Other risks such as buried gas/water lines, sewage, or electrical wiring can also make repairs extremely hard to take care of, especially if it involves excavation.

Read our blog to learn why interior drainage systems are more efficient than exterior drainage systems. 

Is it necessary to get a battery back-up for my sump pump?

We always recommend a battery back-up in the event that the house loses power during a storm and it’s not able to continue pumping out water.

Read our blog to learn more about the importance of getting a TripleSafe Sump Pump installed in your home. 

What causes my foundation to settle or crack?

Before a home is built, a hole is dug so the construction process can begin. Nearly every house can “settle” into place in one way or another. Yes, your home does rest on solid ground, but the ground beneath your home is made up of many different layers of soil. With time, these layers of soil can wash out, soften, and shrink causing your foundation to settle or crack.

Read our blog to learn more about what causes foundation failure and what American Waterworks can do for you. 

How can I tell if my foundation is in need of repair?

If you notice your foundation walls bowing, cracking, or settling, we recommend that you have it inspected. Other signs are sagging and cracked floors, sticky doors and windows, and tilting chimneys.

Click HERE to learn about what the common signs are when it comes to foundation issues in homes or buildings. 

Why is it important to have my dirt crawl space sealed/encapsulated?

By encapsulating your crawl space, you can make your home more energy-efficient by keeping cold air out and warm air in. It can give you valuable storage space, keeps away mold, pests, and rodents, and prevents musty smells throughout the home.

Read our blog to learn more about why and how your dirt crawl space can affect all the areas of your home. 

What causes a house to have high radon levels?

Radon is a naturally occurring gas that breaks down from uranium and attaches to particles in the air that can cause air quality to be compromised. As a gas, radon can enter any home through cracks, holes, or any other openings. In particular, radon enters homes through a process known as the "stack effect", which practically sucks the gas right into the home.

Read our blog to learn about the importance of getting your home tested for radon. 

Are you curious about the radon levels in your state? Click HERE to learn about the radon level statistics throughout our country state by state. 

Can radon affect pets?

Yes, in fact, pets and children are even more susceptible to be affected by radon because their lungs are smaller and they are lower to the ground, which is where the radon comes from.

Click HERE to learn more about the radon effects on pets. 

Why does my concrete sink?

When concrete sinks or cracks, it can cause issues such as pooling water, uneven surfaces, and potentially dangerous tripping hazards. The stability of any concrete surface is dependent on the soils beneath it. The weight of concrete and what it supports, combined with natural soil erosion, can lead to sunken and uneven concrete surfaces.

Read our blog to learn more about why concrete sinks and how we can repair it. 

Why is PolyLevel more effective than mudjacking?

Our warrantied PolyLevel solution is much less-invasive and only takes 15 minutes to cure, whereas mudjacking takes roughly a full day and is messier. The holes that are drilled for PolyLevel are significantly smaller than mudjacking holes. Mudjacking washes out quicker, therefore, causing your concrete to need repair again.

To learn more about why PolyLevel is better than mudjacking, click HERE

Can I do concrete joint caulking by myself?

You can buy special caulk at your local hardware store, such as Menards, so you might be tempted to caulk your concrete by yourself. But some caulks from hardware stores can dry out, crack, and bubble when exposed to the sun and other elements or contaminants. At American Waterworks, we used a silicone-based sealant called NexusPro that offers a long-lasting solution that will prevent moisture from seeping underneath the cracks that are caused by soil erosion. 

The first step in our NexusPro process is to prepare the cracks and joints, which could include removing all debris, existing sealant, and grinding out the cracks. Second, our NexusPro is applied to the crack and compressed down into the joint or crack, which provides the concaved impression of the NexusPro. Lastly, the joints and cracks are blended with a fine layer of sand that is locally sourced. The purpose of this sand is to give the concrete a polished, orderly appearance. 

Click here to read about what NexusPro is and why it is important. 

Can you install all of your systems year-round?

Yes, we can install all of our systems year-round except for concrete during the winter and cold months. At American Waterworks, we provide systems and services that can solve a variety of different problems throughout each season. Our company is driven to restore, protect, and repair your basement from water damage, structural problems, crawl space from inefficiency, and ensure you are breathing in safe air. 

How do you repair basement walls that are crumbling?

Repairing basement walls that are crumbling requires a thorough inspection into the causes of the crumbling before the wall can be repaired, starting with a thorough inspection of moisture and its impact on the soil surrounding the area of the basement wall that is crumbling. After a thorough inspection, there are several methods to repair a basement wall, such as wall anchors, braces, carbon fiber straps, etc., to name some of the most common repairs. 

How long does it take to install a basement waterproofing system?

You can expect our team to work one to three days, on average. This time can solely depend on what we find once the floor area is open and what the condition is of the lower wall area. If we do have to extend the schedule for whatever reason, no additional cost will go against you.

To schedule your FREE estimate and project, click here or give us a call. 

How will I know if my old basement windows need to be replaced?

Older basement windows are most often made out of steel or wood. As these products age, they will rust, deteriorate, corrode, or decay. Thankfully, these window leaks can be repaired or fixed quickly and efficiently with our Egress Windows or EverLast Replacement Basement Windows. It's smart to get your windows replaced in the fall because winter is coming and it will make your home much healthier and more energy-efficient. 

Click this link to read about why fall is the best time for home improvement projects.

Is concrete repair more cost-effective than concrete replacement?

Yes, concrete repair is less expensive than full concrete replacement. It's a much faster repair process and far less disruptive to the surrounding grass and landscaping. For concrete repair, the wait time to walk and drive on it is much less. In fact, our PolyLevel fills the voids underneath the concrete and compacts the underlying soil, which stabilizes your concrete for many years to come.

Is your team knowledgeable about local building codes and permits?

Yes, we pull any permits and observe all codes in the areas where we perform our work. If you have any questions about this, please give us a call at 1-800-795-1204 and ask for our Logistics department. 

What are the benefits of crawl space encapsulation?

Our crawl space encapsulation system reduces the moisture in your crawl space and provides a cleaner space, allowing more room for storage. Along with that, it makes your home more efficient for heating and cooling, therefore, reducing energy costs. It also provides protection against radon gas as it offers a barrier to prevent radon gas from accumulating in the crawl space.

Read our blog to learn about how a dirt crawl space can affect all areas of your home.

What does a service appointment/annaul maintenance include for a home mitigated for radon?

1. Check the fluid in the U-tube.

2. Check the radon fan and moisture collar.

3. Check the radon filter.

4. Check the GFI outlet.

What does a service appointment/annual maintenance include for a repaired foundation?

1. Tighten all anchors and braces to correct torquing pressure (The customer should tighten them on their own every 4-6 weeks).

2. Benchmark the walls to monitor the progress.

3. Cut anchor rods as needed.

4. Re-wax the anchor rods if necessary.

5. Inspect the walls for other structural issues.

6. Inspect the crawl space for moisture or structural issues. 

7. Check floor elevations to see if the floor is level for SmartJacks, and adjust the system if necessary.

8. Laser the foundation to see if there is any settlement for Piers.

9. Inspect the house for other structural problems.

What does a service appointment/annual maintenance include for a waterproofed basement or crawl space?

Basement

1. Flood the test system to ensure water is flowing through the system properly.

2. Cycle and water test the sump pump.

3. Clean weep holes and the impellers of the pumps.

4. Check the switch function to ensure the pump is turning off and on.

5. Check the operation of the float switch, intake, and valve.

6. Clean the sump liner of sediment and salt. 

7. Change the batteries in the water watch alarm as well as load test the battery backup system.

8. Check the discharge line for potential freezing.

9. Use the hydrometer to check humidity levels.

10. Check for domestic water leaks.

 

Crawl Space

1. Check for tips and tears.

2. Check for leaks in the joist pockets.

3. Check for humidity.

What does a service appointment/annual maintenance include for windows and dehumidifiers?

A. Windows

1. Check the seal.

2. Check for leaking.

3. Clean out the window well drain if the homeowner has one.

4. Clean the debris out of the window well.

 

B. Dehumidifier

1. Check the filter.

2. Check the duct kit.

3. Check the humidity.

4. Check the tube, and make sure it isn't clogged or any discoloration is in it.

5. Flush out the air exchanger and clean the internals. 

What kind of caulking is used when repairing concrete?

When repairing concrete, we use NexusPro, which is a silicone-based product that fills and seals cracks and joints after lifting concrete slabs with our PolyLevel. Unlike some other sealants, our NexusPro is resistant to UV rays, which means that it won't bubble, crack, or dry up. Along with that, the drying time is much less than any other caulking product, and it has been proven to elongate its life twice as long.

What kinds of concrete unevenness could be signs of a larger issue?

Uneven concrete is very common due to aging and weather changes which can affect the soils underneath the concrete. However, the most serious concrete lifting problem that we find is those that impact surrounding structures, such as your home. A sinking concrete driveway near your garage can lead to foundation cracks and potential damage over time.

What products do you not do annual maintenance or service appointments for?

1. Concrete

2. Flexi Span

3. Flooring

4. Foamax Wall Panels

5. Spray Foam

6. Mold

7. SentrySeal

8. Wall Recovery System

9. ShotLock

10. Brightwall

11. SilverGlo Wall Panels

12. Basement to Beautiful Wall Panels

13. ZenWall

What should I do if water comes through a crack in my foundation?

If water comes through a foundation crack, the first thing to do is to make sure that it drains properly into a floor drain and clean up the water quickly. Water in your basement can lead to odor, water moisture, and other problems. Next, check for any drainage problems outside of the house to make sure water is running away from your foundation. Finally, make sure you get a foundation repair expert out to your home to inspect the cause of the water coming through your foundation crack to protect against it occurring again in the future.

Why do I need a window well for my egress window?

In addition to adding a layer of protection to the elements, it also adds a means of escape out of your basement in case of a fire or safety hazard.

To learn more about the importance of our Egress RockWell Window Wells, click here.

our service area

We serve the following areas

IowaWisconsinMinnesota Our Locations:

American Waterworks
1307 Valleyhigh Dr NW
Rochester, MN 55901
1-507-200-2737


American Waterworks
4119 14th Ave N
Fargo, ND 58102
1-701-419-8222
Service Area
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