How to Stop a Garage Leak
LESLIE: Paul in Arkansas is on the line with a leak from the garage. Tell us what’s going on.
PAUL: When we have snow and ice on our vehicles and we pull into the garage and shut the door, the – all that snow and ice melts and turns into water; puddles on the floor. And the garage is sloped just a bit, I guess, towards the house. And I guess it’s seeping or running underneath that wall that separates the house from the garage and it’s soaking our carpet.
TOM: Wow. Boy, you must have a lot of stuff dripping off that car.
PAUL: Well, at times we do. And we’ve lived here two years and just recently started having this problem.
TOM: Right. Well, there should be a sealer underneath the wall plate when that wall is framed and it might be that that’s missing and giving it an easy entrée. What I think I might try to do is pull off the baseboard molding, if you have it on the garage side. And I would use expandable polystyrene foam, like the GREAT STUFF? And I would try to foam that gap between the floor and the wall.
And the trick here is to let the foam dry, because it’ll be really gooey and puffy. Then after it’s dried, you can come back with a utility knife or a file or a rasp and sort of clean it up against the wall. Then you could put the trim back up. And that should seal that gap nicely, at least enough to keep the water puddles from getting under the wall, until they have a chance to dry out.
PAUL: OK. So that foam is pretty much waterproof then?
TOM: Yes, absolutely.
PAUL: OK. Great.
TOM: It’s pretty much indestructible. We’re pretty sure it’s going to be here for the next millennium.
LESLIE: It’s going to outlive all of us.
PAUL: Well, that sounds great. I sure appreciate it.
TOM: Alright. Good luck with that project, Paul. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.