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Old 06-23-2012, 03:43 PM
 
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Default Pinhole leak in basment wall

There was a heavy thunder storm. I went down to the basement to close a window. It was raining heavy and the wind was blowing. I noticed a tiny pin hole in the concrete basement wall. It was a little above eye level. There was a very, tiny stream of water coming down. It did not amount to much water. How should I fix it? Do I need to drill a hole? Thanks in advance.
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Old 06-23-2012, 03:58 PM
 
Location: The Triad (nc)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by setsuna_f_seiei View Post
There was a heavy thunder storm.
It was raining heavy and the wind was blowing.
I noticed a tiny pin hole in the concrete basement wall.
How should I fix it?
What is happening outside the house?
In particular at ground level near this spot?

hint: 98% of homes have inadequate grading.
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Old 06-23-2012, 04:06 PM
 
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The wind was blowing hard toward the house. The water was leaking from the wall which was hit by rain and wind coming toward it. The basement window that I was closing is also on the same side. Rain was hitting me before I had a chance to close it. The house has good rain drainage as far as I know. I do not have a sump pump because the basement is dry during heavy rain.
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Old 06-23-2012, 07:17 PM
 
Location: Knoxville
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If you drill a hole, it will no longer be a pin hole leak. :-)
Look at the grading outside and make corrections as needed. If its not a huge problem, you can get the products like Damn Tight or Dry Lock and paint it on the block. That will probably stop what you have going on.
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Old 06-23-2012, 09:43 PM
 
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Any cracks nearby?
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Old 06-24-2012, 04:08 AM
 
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Look around outside. It could be a simple matter of extending a downspout or something.
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Old 06-25-2012, 06:00 PM
 
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Thanks for all the replies. My downspouts seem fine. There is no cracking near the hole. The hole is very small. I couldn't even fit a nail in it. Regarding the Dry Lock, I don't know what you mean by "paint it on the block." Should I try to fill the hole with this stuff? Or do you mean, I should paint my exterior basement wall (the small part which still visible from outside) with it? Thanks again.
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Old 06-25-2012, 08:43 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh area
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Is the hole above or below the ground level outside? I don't think we've clearly established that. Since you say only a small part of the wall is visible outside I'm going to guess the hole is below grade but it isn't 100% clear yet.

It doesn't sound like a huge issue, but obviously it would be nice if the hole didn't weep. If it is instead above grade it probably won't do that often, but you can patch it easily enough on both sides, if indeed it is a hole that is straight through (it may not be).

If it's below grade usually it's the grading of the soil or another drainage issue outside that's the problem (that's why people have mentioned it), although with a heavy enough rain and an obvious hole near enough to the surface, I guess it could happen even with everything else being fine. A somewhat common drainage issue that would direct water at the foundation would be a plugged downspout causing an overflowing gutter. Usually if this happens enough though you'll see evidence of the problem on the ground. Main point being, you want to correct any problems out there if there are any, rather than just correcting the symptom of the water leak. Once you're sure there are no problems out there, then worry about the leak. If it's close to the surface, you may want to have a look at the outside wall there as well.

Seems like for a hole that small you might try a concrete crack filling product that comes in a tube like caulk. I don't really have a sense for how well they work, but they would at least give you a better chance at forcing more patch material into the void.
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Old 06-26-2012, 07:01 AM
 
Location: Knoxville
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Sorry, I didn't notice that you said concrete wall. In my area, most foundations are concrete block walls, I forgot that there are also poured concrete foundation walls too.
Like Greg said, you can get some patching material and seal the gap. DryLok will also work on concrete. You paint it on the inside of the foundation wall, usually two coats are required for a full treatment.
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Old 06-26-2012, 08:31 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh area
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BTW in my post it should say "have a look at the outside _OF_ the wall there as well". As in, if where you see the leak is just a few inches below the grade outside, you may want to dig that out and have a look, if it's in an area where you won't disturb anything important out there. I wouldn't make a big production of it outside though if it's well below grade, as long as the grade is okay and your gutters are not overflowing and that sort of thing.
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