Providing peace of mind to homeowners in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin for over 30 years.


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Frequently Asked Questions


Please take some time to read through our most commonly asked questions and answers. If you have a question about anything not discussed here, do not hesitate to contact us!


Water is coming in at the top of my basement wall, will drain tile help?

Drain tile is designed to remove ground water from the bottom of your foundation.  Water running down the wall from the top of your foundation indicates poor grade in the landscaping outside of your home.  Drain tile will not fix this. It is recommended to have a 5% positive grade away from your foundation, which works out to be a 6-to-8-inch drop for the first 10 feet away from your structure.  If you are not able to correct your grade yourself, we suggest finding a highly reviewed landscaping company to fix the problem.  In addition, check your gutter system. Clear all debris from your gutters regularly.  Check your downspouts and make sure they are attached and directing water 6 feet away from your foundation.  Do not allow water to pool up next to your foundation.  It causes hydrostatic pressure on you walls which can cause them to bow and crack, and eventually leak. 

Water is coming in thru my basement/egress window, how do I stop this?

Again, proper grading is important.  Make sure water from your roof, gutters or a sump pump discharge is not running toward your windows.  If you have window wells, check the depth.  The grade should be at least 6 inches below the bottom of the window.  Two inches of pea rock should be added on top of the grade to help drain water.  Also, window well covers will help to keep leaves and other debris out of your wells.

When does drain tile help?

Drain tile is designed to remove ground water from the bottom of your foundation, around the footing and beneath the floor.  If you have water leaking from your cove joint (where the wall meets the floor) or if you have a block foundation and see that the blocks are damp or discolored, the blocks can be drained by drilling the cores and diverting the water into a drain tile system. You may also see water coming up in the middle of your floor.  This is from hydrostatic pressure building underneath your home.  This pressure can build and cause your floor to crack. Water left to flow around your footings and under your floor can eventually wash away the soil your home is sitting on, causing it to sink or creating voids under your floor leaving your concrete unsupported.  Installing drain tile around the interior perimeter of your foundation will collect the ground water and pump it safely outside through a sump pump system, away from your foundation. 

Can you fix my drain tile system if it was installed by another company?

If you are having problems with your system, we suggest contacting the company that originally installed it to see if they can fix it.  You should check to see if the system is still under warranty.  We would be happy to make a site visit to determine if the system needs to be replaced.  

What kind of waterproofing do you install?

We install our proprietary SafeBasements interior drain tile system. Our system will drain water from the walls, lowers the water table below the floor. It is a clog-resistant, erosion-control, semi-sealed system that improves indoor air quality. Click here for more information. We do not paint “water sealer” on your walls. Sealing the moisture in your walls will cause higher humidity levels and could possibly deteriorate the cement block over time. We do not build French drains in your yard.


My sump pump keeps running and I can see water swirling around in the basket, but water is not going out of the discharge pipe.  What is wrong? 

Your discharge pipe is frozen.  Check outside and make sure snow and ice are not blocking the outlet at the end of the hose.  If you have a black corrugated flex hose, remove it from the house and take it inside to thaw.  We recommend using PVC pipe for your discharge, especially in the winter. Flex hoses are known to freeze because they bend and trap water.

Why is my pump spraying water back into the basket?

This is not a leak; it is a predrilled weep hole.  The weep hole is necessary to reduce the pressure by evacuating trapped air.  This allows water to flow into the sump pump.  If the air is not released, it will cause the pump to become air locked.


Horizontal Cracks

A horizontal crack (also may appear as a stair step crack) is a sign that your wall may be bowing or leaning.  This is often caused by hydrostatic pressure in the soil surrounding your home.  When the soil absorbs rainwater or melted snow, it will cause the soil to swell up putting pressure on your foundation walls.  This is especially common in areas with clay-rich soil.  If the soil doesn’t have proper grading to divert the water away from your foundation, the continued swelling will cause your foundation to bow and crack.  If left untreated, the walls could eventually fall in. 

Vertical Cracks

A vertical crack is typically a sign of poor soil compaction around your home, creating voids beneath the foundation that may cause your home to settle.  You may find cracks in your plaster or sheetrock; doors and windows may be hard to open/close/lock, or gaps may appear.  The void beneath your foundation may cause the floor to crack and possibly leak.

What can cause my cement block foundation to crumble or flake?

Moisture is the real cause. Cement is porous by nature and absorbs water. During the initial build, the cement may have been mixed with too much water. Through the years, the block will absorb moisture. During winter months, water will freeze, which expands. When it melts, it contracts. This process will cause the block to flake and crumble.


How long are the consultations?

Our consultations are typically 1 to 1 ½ hours long. Our consultants will perform a multi-point evaluation to determine what is causing the issue you are having.  In addition, measurements of humidity and radon will be taken.  Please note this radon test will only locate the presence of radon and its entry point(s).  A long-term test would be required to determine actual radon levels. If we can provide a solution to your problem, our consultant will give you a quote for the repairs. 

When do you do consultations?

We do consultation appointments Monday through Friday from 8am to 4pm.  If later times or weekend appointments are needed, we take them on a case-by-case basis.

If I am buying a home, can you do a foundation inspection to make sure everything is OK?

We do not provide home inspections or reports on the soundness of foundations.  We only provide estimates for needed repairs that fall within our scope of work.  If you need an inspection report, you will need to hire a certified home inspector.

I am looking to buy a home, or I am a realtor representing a buyer, can we schedule a consultation? 

We do not do in home consultations for anyone other than the owner.  Our policy is to only speak to the person(s) who have legal decision-making capabilities for the home repairs.  However, we do understand if you are a buyer or realtor representing a buyer, you need to know what you may be getting into and that you are on a tight timeline, so we have created a “realtor:” tab on the home page of our website.  Buyers and realtors click on the tab, complete the requested information, and receive a virtual estimate within 1 business day.  


Do I need a down payment? 

Yes, we require a 10% down payment to secure your spot on our production schedule.  This deposit is non-refundable.

Do I have to be present when the project is complete?

Yes, we would like it if you were present when the project is complete. Your technician will go over your project and the paperwork that goes with it. They will complete a walkthrough of your project with you and answer any questions you may have. They will also go over the warranty information.

Are financing options available?

We do have financing options available. Low monthly investment options, with fixed rates and no pre-payment penalties.  There is also no interest, no payment options as well.  All of our finance options are unsecured and through a third party.

When is the remaining balance due?

The remaining balance is due upon completion of your project.  If you are financing your project, we ask that you have your financing in place before you schedule your installation. 


Keep It Dry Minnesota


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4.7 Star Rating on Google Reviews

Analysis of water in basement in Eden Prairie, MN

We had water in our basement and Derek came out to look at it. After reviewing he determined the water was coming from our water softner and used the bypass mode to prevent additional water from getting into our basement. He advised that I needed a plumber. He was honest and forthright and helped me even though it did not bring any service to SafeBasements. He would not accept any type of payment. I will definitely use this truthful company if I need their services for anything in the future.

Tami – Eden Prairie, MN 55346

4.7 Star Rating on Google Reviews

Drain Tile in Little Falls, MN

We are so pleased with the work your company provided. Chris and Levi were so very nice, polite and thorough. They kept things clean during the process taking care to do a good job covering everything and left no mess behind. They are 2 of the hardest working people we have ever seen. You are lucky to have them. We will be sure to recommend your services to anyone we know needing them.

K&J – Little FallsMN 56345

4.7 Star Rating on Google Reviews

Waterproofing in Minnetrista, MN

They were here doing the work. Excellent quality work. Very nice and I could tell they knew what they were doing. Drew was great!

Joyce P. – MinnetristaMN 55388

4.7 Star Rating on Google Reviews

Sump Pump in Minneapolis, MN

Very knowledgeable and proposed a good solution with quality equipment.

Michael M. – MinneapolisMN 55435

4.7 Star Rating on Google Reviews

Drain Tile in Dawson, MN

Very professional and organized from start to finish. Sam was great to work with. Excellent communicator.

Josh F. – DawsonMN 56232