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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We have a townhouse that we rent out. It has a 2 car garage with a bedroom underneath it. In the winter when the tenants bring in their snow covered cars, the snow melts, puddles on the garage floor and water finds its way to the drywall ceiling in the bedroom below.

The garage floor slab has a 10' crack in the center of the slab. (not big, but possibly enough for water to get though). The garage floor is not properly pitched, if anything water runs toward the side wall. The side walls are framed on top of the slab with no curb. The drywall on the sidewall has been water damaged in the past. I don't know if water is getting to the bedroom below through the crack or running to the sidewall and going down. I cannot locate any drawings to show how the floor/wall/ceiling section is constructed. The builder is out of business and long gone. The city has no details and no architect was required.

I am thinking of trying the following as a repair.
1) Open the crack up to 1/4" and then seal with a polyurethane crack sealer.
2) At the floor/wall junction apply a flashing tape approved for concrete. A couple inches on the floor and a couple inches up the wall.
3) Apply a 100% solids epoxy floor coating over the floor, crack and over the flashing tape on the floor.
4) Install rubber/vinyl covebase around the perimeter and seal the base to floor.
5) Give the tenants a squeegee and tell them to keep the water off the floor.

I would appreciate any feedback on this. Better ideas? This have a decent chance of permanently solving the problem? Seems sort of half-a**ed, but I can it done quickly. Thanks in advance.

PS In previewing this I see I do not have a profile set up. I am a mostly retired developer/builder for commercial/retail & industrial projects. This is my own personal problem so if it is not appropriate to be asking here let me know (or let the lashings begin). Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the input. I know nothing about the fabric membrane system so I will look into that. The CT threads confirmed my other research.
 

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These are known to be problematic, but they don't need to be. I'm wondering how you keep condensation from forming on the concrete and water dripping below continuously. Could this be part of the problem?

I don't think it is realistic to think that tenants will squeegee off a floor. You can ask them, but I don't know who will go out after the boogers have falled off numerous times and squeegee them away. You may as well supply a pressure washer and ask them to wash the car before bringing it in the garage. Or, better yet, a drive through car wash.

The only way to waterproof the slab is to put in some sort of membrane and slope it to a drain or towards the exterior.

If it were already sloped, you could put a waterproof coating on the top and call it good. This coating would have to be updated from time to time.

This would not deal with the sweating, however. I would get underneath that slab and see if it has some xps or similar insulation which it is sitting on. The icf (insulated concrete form) people have decks which are basically xps or styrofoam with metal joists and you pour the concrete on these. They support the load and keep it insulated later on. If you don't have something like this, you will get a LOT of water condensating on the underside of that slab. You may be getting that now and think that it is water from above. You may have to live there for some time to figure out what is going on. I suppose you could also heat the garage and this would alleviate the condensation problem.

In summary, check the floor to see if it is insulated. You won't have any luck until you stop condensation.
 

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I think your missing the biggest problem , ten ft crack in concrete with bedroom . Maybe children underneath . If water can and does get through so can gasoline . For more reasons than one I'd be concerned with a crack in the concrete with a bedroom below .
 

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I think your missing the biggest problem , ten ft crack in concrete with bedroom . Maybe children underneath . If water can and does get through so can gasoline . For more reasons than one I'd be concerned with a crack in the concrete with a bedroom below .
The whole thing sounds scary to me, is there not a steel deck under the concrete?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Cleveman, I don't think it is condensation.

A little more background. I have owned this townhouse for 2 years. The 1st winter the tenants called with a damp spot on the bedroom ceiling below the garage. Water had been standing in the garage from melted snow for a while. When we got the standing water out of the garage the ceiling started to dry. The tenants did not want to empty the garage so they asked that I not work on the floor until they left & they would squeegee the floor if needed in the meantime. They have kept the standing water off the floor for the most part & the ceiling has stayed bone dry for all this winter and the second half of last winter.

The floor crack looks to be a shrinkage crack. There are no sawcuts in the floor. The crack is small but it is possible water could seep though. I suspect the water is actually getting in the wall and going down because they did not keep the floor all that dry this last winter and yet there was no sign of moisture below as long as they didn't let enough water stand that it ran to the wall and got it wet.

I understand the proper way to repair this is to remove the slab & redo it correctly. But that would be overkill if it can be corrected by just keeping the water from getting to the wall. That's why I am looking at a flashing tape to seal the floor/wall connection and putting in a covebase sealed to the floor to hopefully prevent the water from even getting as far as the flashing tape. If that fails I can always take more drastic action later.

This sound like it has a fighting chance?
 

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I guess your plan is ok if you think you can seal up the flashing.

And where will the water go? Will it flow somewhere from the edge, or be absorbed/evaporate into the concrete?
 
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