How to Seal a Leaking Brick Basement

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To finish off a brick basement, the walls will need to be sealed. Though brick, like concrete, is a very sturdy material, it is also porous. Because brick is not dense like steel, water can slowly seep into the walls and eventually, into the basement's interior. This creates an environment for mold and a source of damage for belongings stored in the space. To seal a brick basement that has detectable leaks, you'll need to take a two-pronged approach.

Things You'll Need

  • Rubber gloves
  • TSP
  • Bucket
  • Stiff-bristled brush
  • Hair dryer
  • Mortar
  • Sand
  • Trowel
  • Concrete and masonry sealer
  • Paint tray
  • Roller
  • Put on rubber gloves. Combine one part TSP with four parts water in a bucket.

  • Scrub the brick wall thoroughly with the mixture with a stiff-bristled brush to remove any grime and/or dirt.

  • Dry the brick wall with a hair dryer until no water spots remain.

  • Empty and rinse the bucket thoroughly. Combine one part mortar with three parts sand in the bucket and moisten it with water. Use a trowel to stir it up until it forms a pancake batter-type consistency.

  • Spread the mortar mixture over the leaking areas of the brick basement with the trowel, scraping away any excess with the trowel's blade as you apply the mortar. Let the area dry overnight once the leak is filled -- this will plug any leaks.

  • Pour concrete and masonry sealer into a paint tray. Dip a paint roller into the sealer and roll it onto the entire brick wall. Allow it to dry for the recommended time on the packaging instructions -- this will seal the brick basement and water-proof it.

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References

  • "Troubleshooting Guide to Residential Construction"; Steven Bliss; 1997
  • "Remodeling A Basement"; Roger German; 2010
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