1920's House Foundation Parging/Skim Coat - Building & Construction - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

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Old 08-27-2012, 04:07 PM   #1
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1920's House Foundation Parging/Skim coat

Hi guys,

I've done some research and looked at previous threads but had a few lingering questions on a project. We own a 1920 bungalow style home in Portland, OR. It has a full basement with clay block foundation walls (similar to the ones in the picture).

I'm not worried about sealing the foundation completely- no real water issues in the basement. However, what I would like to do is to coat the portion of the foundation that you see from the outside (about 2 feet worth before the siding starts). I've looked into parging it, but then noticed a lot of people warning about using portland cement/lime on ceratin foundation materials. So, my question is what type of parging mixture is safe/good to use on our clay block foundation? Any help is greatly appreciated. Thanks!


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Old 08-27-2012, 08:37 PM   #2
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Talk to someone who has worked on historical structures in your area. You may have to contact the local historical society to find some names, but those parties would be able to help you with what you are wanting to do.


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Old 08-27-2012, 08:53 PM   #3
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The negative issues with using a Portland based plaster comes from it's attempted use as a "waterproofer" on the interior. It's relatively safe to use on the exterior, as it will help repel water in the first place, and the water vapor will still be allowed to dry to the interior..........
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Old 08-28-2012, 04:19 PM   #4
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Thanks for the input guys. I kind of thought it might be okay just to do the exterior side, especially with it only being two feet or so showing. I won't be attempting to waterproof the interior side.
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Old 08-28-2012, 09:13 PM   #5
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how about a fiberglass re-enforced concrete like sure wall? I've used it on older homes' foundations and piers to sturdy them up and help against aged and failing mortar.
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