The Millstone River and concrete make for a wet basement in Millstone, NJ
A wet basement is caused by the concrete basement letting in the water from the Millstone River. Millstone Borough is located in Somerset County, NJ. The Borough is less than one square mile and has around 410 residents (U.S. Census 2010). The Borough was inhabited by Lenape Indians until the late 1600’s when the Quakers and Dutch immigrants settled in the area.
During the American Revolution the Borough was called Somerset Courthouse as it served as the county seat. For many years Somerset Courthouse was in the middle of the War. Washington used the area as a resting point for approximately 3,000 of his troops and he stayed at the Van Doren House.
In 1894, Millstone left Hillsboro Township to incorporate as Millstone Borough. Blacksmithing, farming and grain exporting were the main trades for the Borough.
The wet basement arrives after the tar leaves
Tar is a very good waterproofing substance and has been used forever. During construction a type of waterproofing is usually applied to the foundation before the backfill is done. A tar like substance is applied to the exterior of the concrete walls, both poured and block alike. The tar applied to most homes is good for 30-40 years or so. The tar coating is similar in substance and life to roofing shingles. They don’t last forever and neither does the tar on the foundation.
Once the tar is gone the foundation is no longer sealed and the porous concrete is laid bare. Water creeping through underground soil crevices creates hydrostatic pressure up from beneath the floors and against the sides of your home. Hydrostatic pressure is when a body of water surrounds something that does not float. When this water pressure forms around the foundation the un-sealed concrete starts to absorb the water and creates a wet basement.