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-   -   How to seal/waterproof my front step (concrete) (

Quattro 09-03-2008 09:20 AM

How to seal/waterproof my front step (concrete)
Hello all,

some of you may remember the trials I went through last winter to investigate and fix a problem with air/moisture where part of my basement ceiling is actually the underside of the top step to my front door. This step is mostly exposed to the elements, and is only partially covered by the roof. Therefore, every time it rains (even a gentle rain), the front step gets wet, and has the potential to let a small amount of water into the basement.

I've since taken some steps to help channel some of the rain water off the front step, and have done a good job of sealing the joint between the siding and the step...the seam where most of the water would travel down through to the basement.

But I'd also like to top-coat the concrete for an even better resistance to water. I just looked at a product called "Sani-Tred" and it looks like just the ticket. But it's expensive! Any alternatives out there? I'm looking at about 20 sq ft of concrete at least.

Thank you!

inspectorD 09-03-2008 04:24 PM

While I have not used this product, there are many similar ones out there.
All are expensive, because they do a good job. Ask your local concrete yard what they recommend and use, those guy's are going to know who is having good success stories in your area, and which ones are the best bang for the buck.

I think it's a great idea.:)

Quattro 09-04-2008 09:00 AM

That's good to know. I will pay the price if the product is high quality.

handyguys 09-08-2008 01:18 PM

I'm not sure I would top-coat the concrete solve a water problem in your basement. I did not participate in the other thread you mention. post a link to it and I'll read up.

Quattro 09-09-2008 08:20 AM

Hey handyguys dude,

The real problem is this:

The front door to my house has a concrete pad in front of it, that is only partially covered by the roof overhead. For some very strange reason, the house was designed so that the basement extends under this slab. Perpendicular to the wall the door is in, is a short (3 feet) wall that comes down to the slab. This joint is where the water would enter the basement...because rain would run down the siding and right into that seam.

That problem has been more or less fixed. I still need to figure out why water runs down the siding in that particular spot, but now at least the water is diverted off the slab and on the ground.

However, since approx. the whole front half of the slab is exposed, it gets plenty of drip-line water impact, and the top surface of the concrete is starting to deteriorate. Add in winter-time snow shoveling, and that surface takes a good beating. More than anything, I want this top-coat to protect the concrete and give it an even better ability to shed water.

Short of building a big shed roof that covers this slab entirely, I don't know what else would work.

Quattro 09-09-2008 08:22 AM

Oh, I can probably get a few photos posted tonight that should help.

handyguys 09-09-2008 08:42 AM

I'm not sure I have a good solution.

I have something sort of similar (not really). I have a concrete front porch. It was built on a foundation wall that was poured the same time as the house. It has the same footers and all. The basement is closed to the 'room' under the porch. That room was backfilled before the porch slab was poured.

Maybe thats your long term solution. pour a footer and wall under the wall of the house and fill in the open area under the steps. Waterproof that new wall before backfilling.

Good luck
Handyguy Brian

Quattro 09-09-2008 10:59 AM

Well, that is an option I hadn't considered. Just can't believe the house was built this way!

mudmixer 09-09-2008 11:47 AM

Quattro -

The room under the porch may have been for an optional or future well.

Usually, it is at a back or side door and not the front door. If a well was instaled, a glass block (to be knocked out for access) was cast in the slab, but if no well was installed it was just plain concrete, but accessible to a well drilling rig since it was not all under the eaves.


Quattro 09-09-2008 02:20 PM

Well, there never was a "room" under the slab per se...just part of the basement. And the house is 20 years old and in a residential area in a small city...everyone has city water. So I don't think it would have been for a well. I think it was just a poor design.

The slab is supported on two sides by the foundation, and the other two sides by two steel lintels connected to the floor joists. And in January I erected two walls directly under those lintels to help support them and take some stress off the truncated floor joists. So now it really is a little "room", and it is currently all framed out and ready for drywall (it has 1.5" and 2" XPS against all concrete surfaces and on the treated plywood form under the slab).

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