Efflorescence in Basement


  #1  
Old 10-03-14, 01:36 PM
J
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Efflorescence in Basement

Efflorescence

My painted basement wall has what I think is efflorescence on some walls. I steel brushed and washed with bleach and water.

1. Is bleach and water okay to wash with?

I want to put on whatever is recommended to prevent the problem of reoccurring. A contract painter said he uses an oil base primer and then paint.

2. If I decide to repaint the wall, what process should I follow?

3. If I do not paint, what clear product can I use on the efflorescence areas?

4. Whatever correction I use, is it necessary to do it on areas that do not have efflorescence?

Thanks,
Jerry
10/3/14
 
  #2  
Old 10-03-14, 01:58 PM
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1. Yes but you probably didn't need the bleach.
2., 3. 4. This needs to be addressed from the outside with gutters, grading and downspout extensions moving water away from your foundation, not by painting the inside wall.
 
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Old 10-03-14, 02:30 PM
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Efflorescence is caused by moisture migrating thru masonry. While applying coatings like Drylok can help, it is always best to address the moisture issue from the exterior! Drylok isn't formulated to be applied over painted masonry.
 
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Old 10-03-14, 02:31 PM
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Hello Mitch

Thanks for your input. As best I can tell I should meet all the outside requirements you mentioned. However, I do have outside basement window wells that could be contributing to the problem.

As you probably know, there are products on the market that will block water from entering the foundation. So, I was hoping that I could find a process that would block (or hinder) the efflorescence from forming.

Jerry
 
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Old 10-03-14, 02:35 PM
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Hi Jerry,
Efflorescence is the symptom you see, not the problem. The problem is moisture outside or below the concrete has found a way into the concrete and will keep looking for a way to escape, or evaporate in the case you have. Even if you found a perfect sealing material for the inside, that moisture will still move through your walls looking for a surface where it can escape.

Unfortunately, as in many homes, the solution should have implemented when the building/foundation was built. Reducing the moisture content of the soil around the house with improved drainage is a first step.

Fortunately, this is not a fast moving problem, so small steps can be taken and results monitored. As for cleaning off what is there, it is just minerals from the soil, water and a brush should do the trick.

I've added a link on Efflorescence and spalling. Note the comment about moisture being able to travel several miles through concrete .
Bud
How it works: Efflorescence and spalling - Fine Homebuilding Article
 
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Old 10-03-14, 02:38 PM
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there are products on the market that will block water from entering the foundation
Yes, and they are applied on the outside, not the inside.
 
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Old 10-03-14, 04:05 PM
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Thanks Bud and all -

I was hoping for a simpler solution.

Jerry
 
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Old 10-03-14, 06:17 PM
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When it comes to moisture and migration, there is never a simple and fast solution. Usually it is not just a different material, although some companies have used it as an advertising claim.

I have seen interior walls in buildings with efflorescence bad enough to blow off the paint on a concrete block wall. Moisture can always migrate upward and a poorly selected paint (often oil based) applied to thick or too many coats of a breathing paint can easily be blown off by the formation of crystals that can ruin many materials.
 
  #9  
Old 10-07-14, 02:27 AM
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xypex or kryton come to mind,,, so does drylok but that's all - just comes to mind,,, if you want something that doesn't work, impo, try the latter avail @ any apron/vest store,,, if you want a pro material, use the former,,, don't complain about difference in price, either

obviously the best solution's to be found on the exterior,,, NOTHING is simple in life IF you've accumulated much of value OR you value yourself
 
 

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