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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Question for you foundation/basement floor specialists.

My father has an old house with a partial basement. His floor is cracked (small hairline cracks) in several places, and as a result, is wet almost all the time in summer. The basement is unused except for laundry. He does not want to spend the money to pour a new basement, or hire someone to pour a new floor. The house is old, and is likely going to be purchased by the gov't as part of a road expansion in the next 10 years. He may sell before then, and this is the main reason that he's looking at finding another solution.

I found a product called Delta FL. Has anyone used it? Here's what we're thinking:

The floor has a few low spots where water collects. I'd like to level these with a self leveling mix of some sort. Once I'm confident that the water will drain towards the sump pump pit, I'd like to lay down this Delta FL, and top it with plywood. This way he'd have a dry floor all the time, and the water that does seep in still has a means of getting to the sump pit.

Am I way off here?

Any advice is appreciated.

Kevin


Edit - here's the link for more info, and a few pictures.
http://www.doerken.de/bvf/ca-en/products/floor/products/FL.php






One last question - if we do use this product, is there a chance that mold will form underneath it? The last we need is someone getting sick.
 

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Kevin,

I seen that stuff at the lumber yard but I didn't like it once I seen "Dricore".

This Dricore comes in 2' x 2' x 7/8" tounge & grove panels that have water-resistant polyethylene membrane on the bottom with Molded polyethylene cleats that raise the floor up off the concrete that gives you air space.

I used it in a basement about 2 years ago and it went down as easy as they say it does and I just used a rubber mallet.

http://www.dricore.com/en/einstallation.htm

Joe Carola
 

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First, the moisture problems in your dad's basement have nothing to do with cracks in the concrete. Concrete will crack for natural reasons, but also from poor preparation involving many other trades and suppliers.

Patching low spots will likely create new ones, that is, puddle chasing.

You say nothing about existing flooring, suggesting a bare concrete floor.

If you are concerned about expenses, as we all are, why invest in ANY kind of flooring system? All of the aforementioned solutions do not address the fundamental problem.

I suggest a high resin industrial sealer, like an epoxy coating. http://www.pacosystems.freeserve.co.uk/resin.htm#Deckcoat And leave a bare surface.

Your concern for "covering up" the problem is legitimate, but you are not the first person with a wet basement. I would not spend a bunch of money to hide it. I believe that you will get a very small return on your investment because the house will sell for neighborhood prices, and you'll get a small return on your investment in the basement. You can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear.

I would focus on an economical abatement of the problem, without trying to cover it up.

If I knew fact certain that I would be in the house for ten years, I'd have to think about getting at the real cause of the water intrusion.

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
GCMan said:
First, the moisture problems in your dad's basement have nothing to do with cracks in the concrete. Concrete will crack for natural reasons, but also from poor preparation involving many other trades and suppliers.

Patching low spots will likely create new ones, that is, puddle chasing.

You say nothing about existing flooring, suggesting a bare concrete floor.

If you are concerned about expenses, as we all are, why invest in ANY kind of flooring system? All of the aforementioned solutions do not address the fundamental problem.

I suggest a high resin industrial sealer, like an epoxy coating. http://www.pacosystems.freeserve.co.uk/resin.htm#Deckcoat And leave a bare surface.

Your concern for "covering up" the problem is legitimate, but you are not the first person with a wet basement. I would not spend a bunch of money to hide it. I believe that you will get a very small return on your investment because the house will sell for neighborhood prices, and you'll get a small return on your investment in the basement. You can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear.

I would focus on an economical abatement of the problem, without trying to cover it up.

If I knew fact certain that I would be in the house for ten years, I'd have to think about getting at the real cause of the water intrusion.

Good luck.

We're not trying to be dishonest about the water problem. Nor are we trying to address the fundamental problem here. We're trying to "cover it up" so my dad doesn't get wet socks when he goes downstairs. Not looking for a quick fix, just a dry floor, even if it is wet underneath.

The idea about the leveling cement is just to make sure we don't get pockets of water that could become stagnant. I want it all to drain towards the sump pump hole, not to stand still.



Joe, I'm not interested in anything that comes in panels with the plywood attached, because this WILL continue to be wet year after year. Don't want any chance of water getting in those joints and rotting away the plywood.
I do thank you for your suggestion though, and I'm sure it's a good product, I'm just leary of using it in this constantly wet application.




To summarize:

-Not looking to hide or fix the obvious problem with the foundation, We're just trying to achieve a dry walking surface. (make the space more pleasant/useable).
-Not trying to mislead any potential buyers.

With that small amount of clarification, will this work?

Thanks for your input thus far, it's appreciated!

Kevin
 

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I used 1200 sq ft of the Delta FL product 2.5 years ago in a basement remodel. Owners wanted bath/bed and family rooms, but were concerened about moisture...not actual water. They lifted a farm house and replaced entire foundation, then we came in and did the framing to finish.

Laid down the Delta, 1/2" CDX, and Tapcon'd the whole thing in place. The floor actually feels like a really good wood floor (with carpet) instead of padded carpet.

This past spring, went back in to move a door for them and lifted up some of the ply. It was as dry as the day it was put down. Don't know if that would've been the case if there'd been liquid water underneath, but no problems with moisture there.

Easily installed, but you'd probably want to use a very good tape to adhere individual sheets to each other. We just used masking to hold in place til ply was screwed down.

FWIW, I'd use it again.
 

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kevin k said:
Joe, I'm not interested in anything that comes in panels with the plywood attached, because this WILL continue to be wet year after year. Don't want any chance of water getting in those joints and rotting away the plywood.
I do thank you for your suggestion though, and I'm sure it's a good product, I'm just leary of using it in this constantly wet application.




To summarize:

-Not looking to hide or fix the obvious problem with the foundation, We're just trying to achieve a dry walking surface. (make the space more pleasant/useable).
-Not trying to mislead any potential buyers.

With that small amount of clarification, will this work?

Thanks for your input thus far, it's appreciated!

Kevin
Kevin,

Sorry I didn't read through your whole post but I don't think what I suggested would work for you since the floor gets wet. I don't think the Delta floor will work either. I understand that you want your father to walk on a dry floor but the water problem has to be fixed first no matter what you put down.

Joe Carola
 

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Hey Joe, the whole point of my post was based on the product you mentioned as well as the remedial patching you proposed. Rather than suggest that you desired to cover up the problem, I implied that your approach would do exactly that. And I based my opinion of your endeavor on the assumption that you are not that kind of guy. Your response to me has reinforced my faith in my fellow dude.

Secondly, I thought my tone should jerk your head away from addressing the evidence of a problem and start you to thinking about its source.

Considering the source, heh heh, direct your thought towards the origination of the water. It could be as simple as grading and drainage around the house. Or as complex and expensive as excavating the basement walls and applying waterproofing and a foundation drain system.

Initially, I over-reacted to what appeared to be an "economical" approach to your problem promoted by slick advertizing. Folks would have better luck plugging leaks using glossy brochures and dollar bills than wasting their money on these products. You were astute to be skeptical.

I have respect for you sir, and sympathize with your problem. Elsewise, I wouldn't have taken the time.

If you have a sump, purchase a latex cement compound to overlay your floor. You can create your own latex cement product by purchasing Portland cement, sand and bonding agent (acrylic latex admixture found on the hardware shelf). Mix the sand and Portland at a 3:1 ratio, respectively, using a 1:1 ratio of water and bonding agent to the desired workable consistency. After thoroughly cleaning the area of slab, paint on some pure bonding agent and then apply the mix to the tacky surface.

I would tackle small areas at a time. Preplan your layout from the highpoint to the lowpoint at the sump. The application I describe can run from 2" thick to 1/4", if you do it right.

I hope this is more helpful than my "rant at the quickfix" post. Your comments helped.

:)
 

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If the cracks are the sole avenue through which water is being introduced to floor surface, try this stuff AV 202.
All it takes is a hammer drill, a small diameter masonry bit and caulk gun. Believe you me, this stuff will stop the flow of water through cracks in concrete - period - end of story.
If it looks like something your interested in then private message me and I'll give the entire scoop.
 

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Stopping water is difficult. You have to understand the pressures.

Imagine yourself as the boy with his finger in the dike. The more you pinpoint the focus of the intrusion, the harder it is to stop it.

Just give water an easier place to go.

EDIT: Point being that if you stop it at the slab cracks you may have to contend with it elsewhere.
 

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I know a lot more than I want to know about foundation leaks. I am familiar with the product PipeGuy speaks of. With a fitting driven into a hole you drill in the slab, you can inject it using a grease gun.

The problem is that if you persue the evidence of a problem, you may never solve the cause. In my experience, you never do. Imagine your frustration after shooting urethane foam into the cracks only to discover water emerging from new cracks, or from the basement walls.

Your basement has a lot of hydrostatic pressure, based on the flow you describe. I thought your economical solution of not fighting the water was smart. That is, you decided to let the water come, but direct it to the sump.

Otherwise, the fixes recommended here are bandages which ignore the disease. Just keep that in mind as you decide.
 
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