Basement walls are important for connecting your house to its foundation and supporting the house above. If you notice a cracked wall or know moisture is coming in, it's time to fix it before the problem gets worse. Sometimes you may even have a large enough crack to cause a slight bow to an interior basement wall. If your wall looks bad, consult a building engineer.
Things You'll Need
- Knee pads
- Eye protection
- Ear protection
- Concrete sealer
- Smooth trowel
- Galvanized strapping (large for wall repairs)
- Permanent marker
- Roto hammer drill
- Extension cord
- Concrete bits
- Heavy duty concrete wall anchors
- Stainless steel lag screws
- Socket wrench (for lags)
Put on protective gear. Scrape away loose concrete chunks with your scraper.
Apply concrete sealer to the affected area by using a smooth trowel. Force the sealer into the joints. The sealer is waterproof and goes on quite thick. Remove buildup with a wet sponge.
Let product dry according to the manufacturer's instructions. You may have to apply more than one coat.
Slightly Bowed Walls: Galvanized Straps
Attach large, galvanized strapping to the wall, from top to bottom, across the crack. Place the galvanized stripping about every 3 feet across the width of the crack.
Place metal straps on the wall where you will mount them. Have a helper hold them in place while you mark drill holes on the wall with a large permanent marker.
Drill anchor holes using the roto drill hammer. Insert anchors with a hammer. Place the straps in place and put the lags into the anchor holes. Tighten with a socket wrench. Repeat this process for every crack. Wide cracks may require more than one galvanized strap.
Slightly Bowed Walls: Epoxy Mesh Strips
Install mesh stripping over the cracks. This is a special wire mesh made from an epoxy-coated Kevlar that is far stronger than steel.
Connect the specialized ceiling and floor joists hangers at either end of the mesh stripping by attaching them into the studs via lag screws.
Apply concrete sealer over the entire Kevlar mesh to provide a watertight seal.
Tips & Warnings
- If your walls are bowed badly, consult a building engineer right away for help.
- Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images
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