Leak in basement from outside


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Old 04-29-14, 09:41 AM
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Leak in basement from outside

We have an partly unfinished basement. The other day when it rained I notice water on the floor. The water is coming from the outside wall. It is framed and has insulation but no sheetrock, thankfully. I happened to notice the insulation on that section of the wall is a different color than the rest, indicating it had previously been replaced. I removed the insulation and found that the concrete had indeed been patched before. Here is a photo:
imgur: the simple image sharer

The house is not that old, built in 2002 I believe. We bought it in August or September. If I recall we are the second owners, but the original owners never lived in it and rented it out. This issue was not disclosed to us when we bought it and on the documents we have from the purchase agreement, under the section about and history of water leaking issues it says "don't know" or something to that effect. Which I am a little pissed about because obviously someone knew about it and tried to fix it. Regardless, I am more concerned about fixing it, although I certainly won't turn down any legal advice, if legal action becomes necessary, which I doubt it will. Anyway, how do I go about fixing it? I researched about fixing cracks that leak and how to fill in the crack with resin but this isn't a crack and it has already been patched and still leaks. Would I have to chisel away the patch and try again? Can I patch over the patch? I am very capable but this is beyond my experience.

As for the outside I am also going to try and direct water away from the house better in that area. The outside part above the leak has no grass but a slab of concrete. It looks like water is likely running under that slab.
 
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Old 04-29-14, 11:48 AM
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It looks like someone used a hydraulic cement to perhaps fill a hole that was designated for a utility line of some type. Maybe that was something done when the house was being constructed.

The hydraulic cement is a product that should work but perhaps the prep. wasn't done very well and there is a continuing leak.

You might drill or grind into the edges of the patch to see if the hole was some type of a blow out and when the patch material was installed there were voids or a crack remaining around the edge of the patch.

Of course, keeping outside water directed away from the wall is an appropriate move as well.

Have you been able to visualize where the water comes in at the patch?
 
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Old 04-29-14, 12:53 PM
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The patch may have been done during construction but the fact that there is a different type of insulation covering that spot leads me to believe it was done well after the basement was partly finished.

I have not yet been able to see the leak in progress. It has leaked twice so far. After the first time I got an extension for the downspout and it helped a little. The second time it leaked is when I decided to take a look behind the insulation. I am waiting for it to rain again to see exactly where it is coming from. I want to finish the basement eventually and am just worried about patching over a bad patch and having the problem come back after the basement is finished and possibly dealing with mold. It seems like that is just asking for trouble further down the line.

So do you suggest chiseling or grinding it down a bit and repatching? That was my initial thought but I just wasn't sure if that might cause problems I might not have even thought of.
 
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Old 04-29-14, 03:46 PM
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Best to see it in action first. If the water is spurting out and appears to be under some pressure that can perhaps demand more drastic measures.

If it is a "seep" then I would cut the area out with a grinder with a diamond blade to create a back angled cut about a 1 1/2" deep. If there is any evidence of a hole going through the foundation I would clean the surface of the penetration with a brush and vacuum out the debris. Mix the water plug cement and force into the hole. Read the directions on the product you buy. You may be doing the application in several mixes as the material sets in a few minutes and you don't want to get more mixed than you can work with.

The nice thing about the product is that it does bond to wet surfaces so as long as you clean the concrete you should get a good job and it also expands as it sets to develop a reasonably complete fill.
 
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Old 04-30-14, 08:11 AM
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Right, I meant after I can witness the leak. Well, I will leave it be for now and just wait for the next rain and tell you what I find. Thanks.
 
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Old 08-15-14, 10:36 AM
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Well, I was finally able to see the leak in action. It took a while but we have had a lot of rain and flash flooding lately, the first time I've ever been glad about that.





It looks like it is leaking in more than one place, around the old patch as well as that gravel looking area in the upper left. Good thing I waited to see it in action. It is a slow seep. So, does that change anything about how you would fix it? Would a hammer and chisel work if I don't have a grinder/don't want to buy or rent one?

Do you know of any videos about fixing this kind of leak? I saw a bunch of videos for fixing basements leaks but they were all for cracks and wouldn't work for this. I am a very capable person when it comes to this kind of thing, I am just ignorant about it and that makes me uncomfortable. I am a visual learner and having videos or diagrams really helps.

Also, just curious about the different products and methods. In the videos with the cracks they used some kind of injected epoxy foam and it would fill all the spaces in the crack. My worry with using the quick dry cement is that it would only seal the surface area of the concrete or at most a little ways back and that water might eventually find its way back in if the water pressure gets too great.
 

Last edited by bobbintb; 08-15-14 at 11:16 AM.
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Old 08-15-14, 05:44 PM
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It doesn't matter what was done on the inside. It has to be addressed from the outside. Look for cracks, wrong pitch & bad gutters & downspouts. Otherwise, you are wasting your time.
 
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Old 08-16-14, 04:29 AM
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that ' gravel ' ares is just poor concrete consolidation,,, fortunately the problem area is near the top of the bsmt wall,,, we would excavate to 6" below it, clean the ext wall, coat w/basf's ' HLM 5000 ', & replace the soil in compacted 6" lifts ( layers ),,, proper regrading would be a great help as a finish step
 
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Old 08-18-14, 08:14 AM
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The problem is that the area directly above this is a concrete pad so excavating it from the outside will be really difficult and I would rather not do it if it is not necessary. I already added an extension to the downspout. It looks like a lot of water is going under that concrete pad from the side. I will add some more dirt build up on the edge of the house and the pad to divert more water away as well. I always intended on addressing the outside as well but as far as that goes, do I really need to do more than just divert the water? In other words, is excavation really necessary? Would pictures of the outside help?

Also, that is kind of why I had the question about the epoxy resin. It seems to me from what I was reading that the epoxy method will fill the crack entirely from the inside out, making excavation unnecessary.
 
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Old 08-18-14, 04:34 PM
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Pics always help. How much space is between the slab & the foundation? Has that been sealed?
 
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Old 08-19-14, 11:01 AM
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ever the yrs, we've found emecole to be diy friendly + their h/o mtl's good [ no $ interest ] good luck !
 
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Old 08-22-14, 09:19 AM
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Ok, here are pictures of the basement and outside, for perspective.

imgur: the simple image sharer

There are two images on that page. On the outside picture, the leak is about where that first white chair would be. Wind comes from the opposite side of the house so rain isn't blowing up against the side of the house. I probably should have gotten a close up of the edge of the concrete pad now that I think about it but if you zoom in you can see the dirt is kind of eroded under it. It is more obvious when standing on that tiny wooden platform on the left. The platform is really slanted.
 
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Old 08-22-14, 01:48 PM
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I can see discoloration on the foundation behind the white chair. That space should be sealed. stadry can tell you the best product to use. As a side note, the ledger board behind that platform isn't doing you any favors either.
 
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Old 08-22-14, 03:05 PM
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Yes, I did not mention but I will be sealing that space, as well as filling in the side. My main concern is if excavating is necessary at all. As I mentioned earlier, it would be a lot of work and time I don't have so if can effectively and permanently be fixed without excavating, that would be preferred. As for the platform, we will be replacing that. We are also considering getting rid of the concrete pad entirely.
 
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Old 08-22-14, 03:48 PM
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I don't see any reason to remove the concrete slab. Seal the space between the slab & the foundation & continue the work on the downspouts. That could solve the problem.
 
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Old 08-25-14, 08:57 AM
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ok, thanks all for the help.
 
 

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