We've been having some torrential downpours lately (3 inches in 1/2
hour). As a result, I've had some water leakage into my garage. In
addition to improving that the outside drainage, I want to seal the
outside wall area where the brick meets the foundation. What sort of
sealant would be best?
Flashing comes to mind.
Sealing should not be the issue, the issue is getting the water away
from there. I would guess you have some sort of ledge of the foundation
material that goes beyond the facing brick above it. If the top of the
foundation was sloped away from the wall, the water would go that way. Any
"seal" you use will fail, but if you provide a place for the water to go
away from there, it will work.
Those 'weep' holes are there for a purpose. About a billion smart
builders have decided they are necessary. Maybe you are smarter than
they are, but I doubt it.
Replace all the sheetrock and insulation in your garage with
waterproof building supplies and you needn't worry about a small leak.
Okay, maybe I need to clarify some things:
-The house and garage have gutters.
-There are no downspouts draining into the affected area.
-The drainage system is basically a swale between my house and the
neighboring house. The distance between houses is roughly 7 feet. The
neighboring house is graded much higher.
-The swale cannot be any deeper than it already is because my electric
line, water main, telephone line, and TV cable line are buried in that area.
-Recontouring the swale for optimum drainage would be an exercise in
futility because my neighbor likes to walk thru that area many times per
day (even though the area is usually wet) and he manages to flatten out
-Due to the above-mentioned utility lines and a couple of utility
junction boxes in the yard, it is impossible to install drains of any
kind in the area.
-So, it seems to me that the only permanent fix is to seal any possible
water entry points.
The leakage is probably at the base of the lowest course of brick -I can
see a couple areas where the mortar is not solid and the location of the
water in the garage coresponds roughly to the location of these voids.
(Note: these voids are not weep holes.)
A neighbor suggested that I use some fibered asphalt cement (the kind
you can apply to wet surfaces) to seal the voids. He had the same
leakage problem and this cement stopped the leaks. My initial posting
was an attempt to see if there are any other sealants out there that
would be good for this application.
Ah, those famous words. Sorry but it never works. The only way to
keep a home dry is to move the water away from the house. You home is your
castle, not your boat.
I suggest you consult with a good contractor, engineer or local
authority to see what your options are. Then work with your neighbor if at
all possible to find a solution.
It may help you to realize that brickwork is itself not waterproof.
Waterproofing, flashing, etc., has to be done with this in mind by someone
experienced in the field. Ventilation is very important. Attempting to seal
up brickwork will often only succeed in trapping moisture inside the
structure. Weepholes are usually provided to allow water to drain from
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