White crystals on basement floor

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Old 10-05-06, 09:16 AM
L
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White crystals on basement floor

Our 28yr old bsmt is fully developed with the floor around the furnaces and hot water tanks painted about 10 years ago. We haven't had water in, we have a sump pump and our house has the the highest elevation on the street. Around the perimeter(one exterior wall and one under garage) a salt like substance has appeared and is lifting the paint and seems to be pitting the concrete. Its also happening in the center of the floor away from the walls. I wiped the floor down with vinegar but its back this morning. Can I paint over with a concrete sealer/ paint? Help!!
 
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Old 10-05-06, 11:19 AM
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The white crystals are efflorescence. Mineral salts migrate up through concrete along with moisture. When moisture evaporates, the minerals remain. Minerals are harmless, but the moisture is an issue, especially if wanting to finish a basement. There are waterproof basement coatings available like Drylok that must be applied over bare concrete and masonry. If concrete is painted, there are products available like Dricore or Subflor that can be used to cover the concrete. These are squares of OSB bonded on top of plastic to seal out moisture. Engineered wood, laminate, or vinyl flooring can be installed.

Make sure gutters and downspouts are clear and carry water away from structure. Splash blocks do not carry water far enough away from structure. Downspouts should tie into drains to carry water far from structure. Soil around structure should slope to carry excess water away. Go outdoors during heavy rain to see where water goes.
 
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Old 10-05-06, 11:43 AM
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Thank you. Because everything in this small area in the mecanical room is painted I was hoping to be able to touch up these areas. Will regular paint concrete cover or should I use concrete sealer? The paint is shiny so I assume its oil based.
 
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