LESLIE: We’re going to talk to Fig in Illinois who’s dealing with a wet garage floor. Tell us what’s going on.
FIG: When the winter came to spring and temperatures went warm, my garage floor – I have a nice, concrete floor but it just turned into what seemed like a sponge because it was so wet. And I didn’t know if there’s something that I can do to help that moisture from coming up through the ground or if that’s non-fixable or what I’m looking at.
LESLIE: Now, did you notice the floor would become very wet after, say, a rainfall or did this occur after the snow was melting?
FIG: It seems to be temperature change; not rainfall.
TOM: Well, it probably is somewhat associated with moisture because concrete is very hydroscopic. In other words, it soaks up water very, very easily. And typically what happens, if you get a lot of water that collects at the foundation perimeter of your house, then what happens is that will get drawn up into that slab and it becomes very, very damp.
So the solution, therefore, is to try to look at the drainage issues that are around your house, Fig. I would start with the gutter system to make sure that the soil at the sides of the garage and even around that area have – make sure that the gutter system is extended out away from the foundation perimeter. Secondly, I would make sure that it’s clean.
TOM: Then thirdly I would add some soil and slope it away from the walls. Those three things working together will keep that area as dry as possible and that will reduce the chance that moisture’s going to be drawn up into that slab.
LESLIE: Well, and also I think with garages a lot of people think if – especially if it’s a free-standing garage – that you don’t have to have gutters on it. But if you’re dealing with a lot of moisture there you should go ahead and install some gutters and make sure those downspouts deposit the water, you know, far away from the garage; you know, maybe three feet or so away.
TOM: And beyond that, I would suggest also painting the garage floor with an epoxy paint; a two-part epoxy. QUIKRETE makes a good one. Basically, you mix the two parts together and so it’s a chemical cure and doing so is going to reduce the amount of moisture that sort of gets drawn through to the surface of the floor.
FIG: Alrighty. Yeah, it is a free-standing one and I don’t believe there’s any gutters around it, so …
TOM: Well, there you have it.
FIG: Yeah. Alrighty. Well, thank you very much.
TOM: Easy to fix. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.