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Looking for a Solution To a Musty Basement?

Posted by Sherry Rioux on September 27, 2010

Every now and then, I get really excited when I learn about a new household product on the market.

One of the most common things we see in homes is damp basements.  There may not be water problems per se but uninsulated concrete absorbs moisture and the continued exposure to static pressure from the ground outside is a source of musty odours in many basements.  The most common place is in a cold room.

I sit on the board of directors for a local condo corporation that has experienced some issues with musty basements.  In the course of investigating a number of things, we had an expert mention a product I had never heard of before called Crystal-Lok®.

When I got home, I started researching it on the Internet and found a few references but not many.  I did find the manufacturer though and, to make a long story short, I ended up speaking with a contractor who uses this product and arranged for a visit.

A Crystal-Lok® lesson in our basement

Crystal-Lok® is a ready-to-use, clear, water-based penetrating sealer designed for application to the surface of concrete above or below grade, inside or out.  It is used for sealing, hardening, densifying, dust-proofing, waterproofing and weatherproofing plus it stops water seepage where it is not caused by cracking or other structural failure.  In short, a potentially miraclulous product for us homeowners!

In addition, the product is solvent-free, odor-free, non-toxic (VOC <0.01 mg/L) and non-flammable plus, it is permanent and never requires re-application.

Before applying spray-foam insulation in our basement, we decided to have the fellow from a company called Concrete Solutions come over and apply three coats of Crystal-Lok® to treat our foundation walls from inside.  There truly was no odour and it dried quickly.  While they were here, I called upon our contractors from our outdoor project (see THAT story here) as well as the property managers I deal with at the condo to come have a look.

If you’ve been trying to figure out what to do with that musty cold room or basement, you may want to look into this.  You can apply it yourself or have it done at a surprisingly low cost.

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