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Question DetailsAsked on 7/7/2016

I have water leaking through both foundation bolts ( through the wall) and into the basement. what can be done?

I recently had a Cambridge patio installed and had my foundation dug up and sealed this past October. Now after a downpour I have water leaking through the bulkhead door bolts into my basement. How can I rectify this problem? thanks

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1 Answer


Obviously, if this is new work (the waterproofing or the bulkhead installation) then go back to the installer for repair - especially if coming up on 1 year warranty limitation, if you have such a warranty.

You don't say (or maybe know) if this is coming in around the bolt from the outside of the bulkhead, or along the foundation under the bulkhead flange and then into the bolt hole.

If outside bolt head and flange area of bulkhead is exposed, I would pull the bolt back about 3-4 inches (not all the way to avoid alignment issues putting it back in, plus pulling it all the wall will result in the goop pressing all the way through the wall and messing up the inside) and goop up the bolt and hole opening and the surface the bolt mates onto with asphaltic basement or basement and roof waterproofing mastic (available in caulk tubes in many areas, in quart and larger cans in all - thicker than peanut butter consistency and messy to use) and also under the bolt head/washer, and tighten it back down - then mastic (pressing it in with caulk gun or putty knife) all along the exposed portion of the flange where water might be getting in.

If the bulkhead flange and bolt is buried deep in the ground, tougher. You could remove the nut/washer from the inside and try pressure-caulking the hole around the bolt (if there is clearance) with an asphaltic mastic, or if dry concrete with a long-life silicone caulk, or using a trowel or putty knife to squeeze in hydraulic cement patch like Thoroseal. This is best done from outside, but if only leaking at the bolt holes (so sounds like poured concrete rather than concrete block wall) might well work. In fact, if poured concrete, just putting a good rubber plumbers washer or a ring of Permatex waterproof sealant or a waterproof silicone caulk under a large galvanized washer and tightening it down will work for the hole alone - but does not prevent the water from possibly finding another way inside the wall to migrate through to the inside surface. Should not do this in a good, uncracked concrete wall, commonly will in concrete block / masonry. Also, by stopping it at the inside as opposed to the outside surface, you will likely have a damp spot there when it is wet outside - not a big issue if unfinished basement, but not good in a finished wall.

Could start with the interior washer idea and if that does not work, migrate to the exterior repair mode.

BTW - cleanup on the mastic, which is basically tar so messy - usually paint thinner (mineral spirits) works, as does fingernail polish remover/laquer thinner (though it strips paint). For hands and clothes prewash cleanup a good automotive mechanics handcleaner works well - just don't let it soak for a period of time on clothing, just a minute or so before washing out, because it will dissolve most natural fabrics with long exposure.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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