Here in Ohio most of our homes have basements, depending on when the home was built this could be poured concrete, cinder block or like one of the homes I grew up in, a foundation made of stones. Yes rocks mortared together, which actually was very dry for a 100+ year old home. Unfortunately some basements do not hold up that well and many of us want to use that space to build our ultimate Man Caves. Before you go dropping $10K on plasmas & pool tables you are going to want to be sure the basement is watertight and mildew free.
Basement waterproofing is a common practice and there are many levels and situations that will warrant this type of renovation. The unfortunate part is it can be very costly and time consuming when you come in after the fact to repair the foundation. The most effective way we have seen is to cut the concrete floor 1-2’ from the wall, all the way around the entire basement. Obviously that concrete will need to be taken out of the house and then the exposed earth is dug up and also removed. At that point a drainage system is put in with piping, gravel and some sort of pump than can be accessed for maintenance. Finally the floor gets a fresh batch of concrete over the gravel and your pocket book drainage is as good as or better than your new basement floor, which looks about the same as it did previously. When you go to finish the basement walls with drywall it will also be important to put up a vapor barrier to ensure if any moisture is around the foundation it is going into the drainage system and not the walls. The picture below does a very nice job of illustrating the process, from a fellow Ohio company Home Spec Advanced Basement, which does a great job of outlining the whole process on their website.
For those that want to tackle this project themselves or do it as a part of your business Diamond Products has come out with a innovative new saw intended for cutting concrete basement floors as well as being very easy for 1 person to get it in and out of any jobsite. The CC1500 Basement Saw ($4715, Ohio Power Tool) is build for just such a job. The 20” blade and 7-5/8” cut capacity make it easy to get down through the floor slab. The whole unit weights 205lbs but the motor can be removed in a few easy steps and the two equal parts, weight just over 100lbs each, easy for getting up and down basement stairs. The unit has a 7.5hp (5hp also available) electric motor which is important because clearly you should never use a gas saw indoors. While the unit is built for indoor use this unit works amazingly well outdoor and provides very consistent power, often times performing better than heavier, larger gas units.
If you need any help with information on concrete tools, saws, diamond blades, usage or anything to do with tools in general get a hold of the guys at Ohio Power Tool 800-242-4424 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Unfortunately they will not be able to help you with remodeling your basement or foundation repair questions.