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Old 09-21-2009, 10:56 AM   #1
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Basement wall prob

Just seeking advise on my basement wall situation...

I have recently purchased a house and i want to finish part of the basement.. I've been in it for a few months now and no waterproblems thus far.. The walls are already painted (not sure if its drylock or latex paint) and i do see some evidience of previous water stains on portions of the wall..

now my question is what should i do to make sure no water enters.. Give the wall a healthy dose of latex paint and go from there or do the long and tedious task of striping the paint and re apply drylock..

If stripping paint, advice on how to make it thurough enough for the drylock to be usefull, is welcome!!! :D

Like i said no water no even seepage since ive lived here w/ a few decent rainfalls

I dont want to do all the work and spend the money and then have water issues, and im to impatient to wait a year to see how the basement holds up to the winter thaw


Last edited by Spalding101; 09-21-2009 at 11:13 AM. Reason: more information
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Old 09-21-2009, 01:10 PM   #2
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In my experience, most basements will get some moisture at some point or another. My house was built 6 years ago and I've never had even a drop - until last winter, when I had a tiny trickle from around a foundation strap that never gave me trouble before.

Either way, a little bit of water won't be a problem if you take the right precautions when finishing your basement. I live in the Chicago area so your insulation needs may be different, but here's how I do it:

1) 10mil plastic on all walls. I make sure to overlap any joints by at least 24 inches and run tape along the entire joint. This vapor barrier is the primary protection against any moisture fouling your insulation and drywall. If anything does come in then it'll run to the floor.

2) Pressure-treated sills on all walls. This is so that any water that does get in won't rot your wall.

Without knowing the volume of water we're talking about, I'd simply be prepared for occasional moisture and be done with it.


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Old 09-21-2009, 02:35 PM   #3
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Ive been in the house for 5 months with no water problems. previous owner installed a few drains around the foundation that drain into the subpump which inturns pumps it out of the house. it runs a few times a day but it keeps the basement dry. Also a small dehumidifier that runs a few times a day..

I do plan on putting up sheetrock and some cheap carpet and was wondering about the plastic route i've just never used plastic before and was nervous if the wall did leek some water, that it would hold the moisture in creating a good spot for mold etc..

Maybe 2x4s to the blocks then plastic to leave a little "breathing" room ? finishing basements is a new area for me and just want to get it right
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Old 09-21-2009, 03:51 PM   #4
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That is correct, walls will leak some moisture and stop at the plastic and mold. Notice this article on vapor barriers:

And this on finishing your basement: http://www.buildingscienceseminars.c...w&Retrofit.pdf

Heat loss:
Be safe, Gary
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Old 09-25-2009, 10:55 PM   #5
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Personally I would NOT install plastic against that wall. I would however put plastic right under my drywall. Leave air under the plastic to circulate.

Plan#2: here in northern quebec we put high density styrofoam against the wall. To hold the foam in place we use cement nails to fastened furring stips horizontaly against them. And....drywall directly to the strips! forget the vapour barrior stuff, just let air circulate enough...

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basement waterproofing

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