Leak Repair Behind Drywall

What Do We Mean By Waterproofing Behind Drywall?   Call 248 834 0050

Where do you begin if you have water coming out from behind your drywall in your basement? It can be very distressing for a homeowner to discover water coming out from behind a finished basement or rec-room wall. Here at Oakbridge we have a lot of experience with drywall. At Oakbridge, we have a lot of experience putting up drywall and finishing basements to make basement living space. We have been doing home remodeling and office remodeling for years. We’ve developed a way to find the leaks that will take a minimum amount of drywall out. We fix the leaks, and then we will repair the drywall and even paint it. As far as I know, we are the only basement waterproofing contractor anywhere that does this service.

These pictures are of a “Behind The Drywall” job. We figured out what was leaking and fixed it and re-applied the drywall.

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We were hunting for a leak.

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We finally found one. It turned out to be a crack with a rod hole in the middle of a rod hole. Very Common!

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The foundation crack crack turned the job into a crack foam injection job. We had to cut a vertical line in and add ports then re-apply more drywall and tape and sand it. It turned out nice. Only 1 1/2 days start to finish.

I suppose you could consider digging outside the foundation in order to keep from having to remove a sheet of drywall or two, but outside digging can easily turn your job into a five-figure project. Digging up 20 yards of dirt by hand, disturbing the landscaping, and possibly having to tear up some of the driveway in order to repair what we can do from the inside with minimum drywall damage, is definitely the way to go. This is especially true if you have a poured concrete basement, where there can be a couple things that can be wrong with the walls. Concrete foundation walls in houses that are fairly new frequently have cracks and rod holes. These two problems are usually pretty small in size and don’t require much work to fix, so it is usually not necessary to remove a lot of drywall.

I am a firm believer that before you put drywall in a basement, or do any finish work at all, you should consider pre-waterproofing the job. There are several different ways to tackle this that would not be too expensive. Call us, and we will make an appointment to look at precisely what would best meet your individual needs. As every job is different, it would be impossible to describe in an article what your basement requires.

Waterproofing behind drywall is no big deal for Oakbridge. Our prices are competitive, and we are able to repair any remodeling you may already have in your basement. There is no one who provides water problem repairs and remodeling restoration. About 60% of our business is doing waterproofing behind drywall. This sort of work is second nature to us. We do a lot of it and we can get it done quickly.

We have many satisfied customer comments on our Testimonials page and they say some pretty nice things. Check it out.

Call me. I’ll come out and take a look at what’s happening in your basement. We’ll see what’s going on behind the drywall and let you know what it would cost to fix the waterproofing and repair the drywall.

Call Oakbridge at 248-834-0050. We warranty our work.

What if I want to finish my basement myself?

If you want to finish your basement as a do-it-yourself project or DIY, I would recommend doing some pre-waterproofing first. Why should you pre-waterproof your basement? You may have a couple of cracks in the wall that are not leaking, and you have a few cracks in the floor that are not wet. You may also have a number of darker spots on the foundation wall about shoulder high that are not leaking. That would be the usual scenario for a finished basement just before you start working on it. I have finished a lot of basements in my lifetime. There is always a big demand for that here in Southeast Michigan, going back as far as I can remember. As families expand, and you choose not to move, you remodel the basement. Here is what I recommend that you do before you remodel.

Your basement may have a couple cracks that are not leaking, so why worry about them? To that I would add the word “yet”. They are not leaking yet. They may leak in the future, or they may not. But do you want to risk damage to all your hard work? I have seen a finished basement develop a leak in the wall that runs down underneath the new finished wall and out onto the carpet. A little water does not usually harm a carpet, as they are made of plastic or nylon, and are therefore not organic. It takes something organic for mold to grow on and make a lot of trouble. The problem is the pad under the carpet. The pad is organic. It is made from pure rubber, which is made from the sap of the rubber tree. Unattended water leaks can cause mold with all its attending problems.

Your typical homeowner in the do-it-yourself mode might tackle a water problem like this: He would tear out a chunk of drywall where the water is making the carpet wet until he found the source of the water. then he would take a chisel and chisel out the crack making a V-shaped gouge, and then pack it full of hydraulic cement. But hydraulic cement shrinks even faster than concrete walls shrink. (See my article on Wall Crack Repairs and Rod Hole Repairs for more information on hydraulic cement.) So usually in two or three years the crack will be leaking even worse than if you had left it alone. I recommend hiring a professional like Oakbridge Waterproofing to come in and inject foam in these cracks with foam before you take a chisel to them. Doing all the cracks that are in areas that are to be covered over with drywall protects you from headaches down the road. You don’t have to do furnace rooms or laundry room, or any other place that is not to be finished. If foundation cracks or rod holes start leaking in the future, they can always be dealt with at that time.

The dark spots on the wall are probably rod holes where the original hydraulic cement in them has shrunk and is starting to leak a small amount already. I could almost guarantee that these will be leaking full-on in a couple years. So with the same rules applying, I would recommend fixing these foundation rod holes. We have a very good method for dealing with rod holes.

As far as the cracks in the floor go, these should not ever be a leak problem. In another page of this website we talked about how basements used to be made with only dirt floors, and they were actually dry. The way basements are built, no floor crack should ever leak because the floor is isolated from exterior water with a drain. You could fill these cracks in with something if you wanted to, but it would need to be only for appearance’s sake.

You may not mind the idea of having to tear out some drywall to fix a leak that may or may not actually happen in your finished basement. Many finished basements are nothing more than four sheet-rocked walls and a drop ceiling. But if you’ve done a good job with your basement remodel, and it includes bathrooms, spas, kitchens or built-ins, guess where your leak is going to happen? It is almost guaranteed that the leak will spring up behind the cabinets and toilet, and shower, and all the very difficult places to reach without major tear-out and repair. Keep in mind it’s always cheaper to fix leaks from the inside than to do a dig-up on the outside. It’s even cheaper to fix them on the inside if you have to take the shower out, fix the wall and put the shower back in. We have had to do this type of repair on several occasions. I definitely recommend that you do pre-waterproofing on the entire concrete wall behind hard-to-reach places in advance of putting up your studs. There are a few different ways we could approach your waterproofing needs. Call Oakbridge at 248-834-0050 before you take on your do-it-yourself basement remodeling project.

Call Oakbridge at 248-834-0050. We warranty our work.

Author: Robert B McGuire