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RImike

Something Different, Home Foundation Repair Using West Systems

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Following the onslaught of constant rain yesterday, I arrived home from work to find water pouring in my basement through various cracks. Like any good sailor, I have probably gallons of West Systems epoxy and figured if I can fix a boat, I can fix my foundation. Low and behold, West Systems actually has a bulletin about this: https://epoxyworks.com/index.php/repairing-cracks-in-concrete/

Has anyone used spare epoxy to fix their foundation or this method? If so, how well did it seal the water out? 

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1 hour ago, RImike said:

Following the onslaught of constant rain yesterday, I arrived home from work to find water pouring in my basement through various cracks. Like any good sailor, I have probably gallons of West Systems epoxy and figured if I can fix a boat, I can fix my foundation. Low and behold, West Systems actually has a bulletin about this: https://epoxyworks.com/index.php/repairing-cracks-in-concrete/

Has anyone used spare epoxy to fix their foundation or this method? If so, how well did it seal the water out? 

Yes, and not great.

but I can’t get to the outside, only the inside. The water pressure just pushed the water around the epoxy. Ever larger patches just pushed the water in ever larger areas. It did slow the amount down. 

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Team Seacats old web site had an article about this type of repair.  Go over to Catsailor and you may get a response from the author.

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4 hours ago, Raz'r said:

Yes, and not great.

but I can’t get to the outside, only the inside. The water pressure just pushed the water around the epoxy. Ever larger patches just pushed the water in ever larger areas. It did slow the amount down. 

You can't fix a leak of any kind from the inside.

A leaking foundation requires digging out the outside and sealing it from that side.

It's a bit like a soggy cored deck - there just ain't no quick fix, despite what some people say.

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4 hours ago, SloopJonB said:

You can't fix a leak of any kind from the inside.

A leaking foundation requires digging out the outside and sealing it from that side.

It's a bit like a soggy cored deck - there just ain't no quick fix, despite what some people say.

Unless I’m tearing out the garage floor, can’t be done.

but, what CAN be done is cut in a sump and put in a pump. 

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Update:

First I chiseled out the crack to remove the cracked and lose concrete, then I began to drill the crack. As my foundation is 8" thick, I drilled using a 1/4" bit 2" deep (1/4) way into the foundation. I then drilled a hole every 6" up the crack, totaling 6 points and placed 3" brass tubes (1/4" od) into the holes.  I cleaned it with a wire brush, washed it out and wiped it down real good with acetone. I then filled the crack with 406 thickened epoxy sealing it and the brass tubes. After 24 hours, I loaded 10 oz of mixed, un thickened epoxy into a caulking gun tube and started at the bottom. Low and behold, after about 7 pumps of the caulking gun, epoxy could be seen at the tube above it. I then plugged the tube and moved up to the next one. All said and done, I injected about 10 oz into the crack and aside from a few slight spills I believe that the crack was pretty much filled. As the epoxy always came out of the tube above it, I believe that it traveled out 6" equally in radius from the end of the brass tube, allowing for about 95% of the crack to be sealed and without the epoxy going out the back of the crack into the soil behind it. Only time will tell before we have the next rain, If it works I have a few other areas that need repair. Especially where the re bar for the old forms has since rusted out inside the foundation walls. 

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what you need is readily available and called hydrophylic grout. it's available in a powder form (simple) or inject-able (more complex). with the grout, you mix it per the ratio described, and apply as a topcoat slurry/paste. when water touches it, it begins to crystallize and seal it's own voids. can be applied directly to voids while leaks are evident or to dry "known" leak spots. depending on severity of leak, sometimes multiple applications over several days are required to fully abate the leak

 

xypex is the one we use most often, though other products are available...

https://www.whitecap.com/shop/wc/p/xypex-crystalline-waterproofing-concentrate-20-lb-59770158?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI_POkuZzY2QIVj19-Ch2t_gUaEAAYASAAEgKiYfD_BwE

 

 

 

 

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Hah. I know the answer!

this is from the permaseal website but i used it in my rental property.

 

dig outside down to the bottom of your foundation, starting where the puddles start. Try to stay within 12” of the wall to not have to backfill too much. There will be cracked/ loose mortar where water comes in. Fill the hole w/ dry CLUMPING KITTY LITTER. Cover top with dirt. Litter will turn to wet clay and seal holes. Believe me renters wanted a freebie anytime any water came in so I fixed it and it has lasted for years.

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3 hours ago, Liquidice said:

Hah. I know the answer!

this is from the permaseal website but i used it in my rental property.

 

dig outside down to the bottom of your foundation, starting where the puddles start. Try to stay within 12” of the wall to not have to backfill too much. There will be cracked/ loose mortar where water comes in. Fill the hole w/ dry CLUMPING KITTY LITTER. Cover top with dirt. Litter will turn to wet clay and seal holes. Believe me renters wanted a freebie anytime any water came in so I fixed it and it has lasted for years.

Since you dug down anyway, why not do it correctly with hydro cement and put some sort of patch ovrt the crack.  you have already done the hard part (Digging).  The rest is easy...  and 12"??  seems tough to dig 6' down keeping that close....  might be good for smallish crack close to surface, but no way if crack is bigger than a couple inches,  Also that would be a huge hole to fill with cat litter.

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The clay is soft and moves with the crack. The concrete is hard, as are other various compounds , and as the shifting that led to the crack continues, the water comes back.

i know it sounds crazy, but “bentonized clay” aka clumping kitty litter, is amazing for this. I’ve done it for my building and for a couple others now and it’s worked every time. Maybe if you had to break concrete to get there it would be worth putting in something more substantial, but if you have properly pitched concrete it usually won’t seep to begin with. 

Digging to the foundation for me also only means like 3.5-4’ down, so I am able to knock a side out start to finish in  a 6 hour day, faster if I can get help digging.

I do buy a lot of kitty litter when I do it. The WALMART clerk probably thought I had a tiger or something. But it works great. Before, every time there was a heavy rain, I’d get a call from the tenant about water, sometimes a lot in a long heavy rain. After, dry as a bone. And no I’m not a tidy cats salesman I’m just trying to help a sailor out.

 

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Wouldn't it be a lot cheaper to.just use sodium bentonite. Active ingredient in the kitty litter without all the extras. Used extensively in Australia to seal leaking earth dams.

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