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  • basement white cyrstal growth

    Bought a house few months ago and found there are some white crystal grow on the basement. I can feel some of the tiles are loosing. how to fix it and provent it.

    There already have a sump pump on the basement and it runned few days last month since we moved in last July.
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  • #2
    Re: basement white cyrstal growth

    Never seen that before. Is it a powder-like substance? If you touch it will it "poof"?
    Last edited by GilBeQuick; 04-21-2008, 05:26 AM.

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    • #3
      Re: basement white cyrstal growth

      Originally posted by GilBeQuick View Post
      Never seen that before. Is it a powder-like substance? If you touch it will it "poof"?
      yes, it's powder like and when i walked above, I did feel the "poof".

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      • #4
        Re: basement white cyrstal growth

        Crack?

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        • #5
          Re: basement white cyrstal growth

          Efflorescence? How old is the home?

          mark
          "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

          I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

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          • #6
            Re: basement white cyrstal growth

            Ive seen it before in fact it happened in a commercial building i had.A friend said it was excess calcium in the concrete with too much moisture under the slab.Not a great solution maybe but I ended up gluing down a commercial grade swimming pool area type carpet over it.Sold that place about 10 years later.
            Ive no idea if thats right or wrong tho.
            Sam

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            • #7
              Re: basement white cyrstal growth

              Originally posted by threecreeks3 View Post
              Ive seen it before in fact it happened in a commercial building i had.A friend said it was excess calcium in the concrete with too much moisture under the slab.Not a great solution maybe but I ended up gluing down a commercial grade swimming pool area type carpet over it.Sold that place about 10 years later.
              Ive no idea if thats right or wrong tho.
              Sam
              I was wondering if the ground water could be causing calcium leaching of the concrete.

              Mark
              "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

              I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: basement white cyrstal growth

                Originally posted by ToUtahNow View Post
                Efflorescence? How old is the home?

                mark
                the house was built in 1950 but where i found was an addition. I guess it was added in 1970's.

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                • #9
                  Re: basement white cyrstal growth

                  Not seeing it really up close, it could very well be calcium or alkali leaching up through the concrete slab. I presume it does look like a 'growth' of some kind. Also, are you getting any moisture seepage or is it just this white stuff?

                  I've seen this type of powdery-looking seepage at the bottom of one wall in my old (1887) house. It washes or is easily wiped away.

                  Problem of course for you is that whatever is causing it, may also be loosening your tile.

                  It looks like there is no vapor barrier and/or gravel bed between the concrete and the ground, which is certainly not a rarity in a house of that age. Moisture penetration and/or mineral penetration is probably existant in almost any home where "prevention" was not considered. I think it was common practice with many builders to simply pour the basement floor directly over the existing soil bed.

                  At this point, about the simplest thing you can do is remove the tile and try to seal the floor before retiling. Also, check the drainage around the basement walls. Both Lowes and Home Depot carry a wood tile product (2 x 2 T&G squares of treated ply with a PVC-type moisture barrier applied to the underside) that can be used. The Home Depot carries the Dri-Core product which I've used with good results. (www.dricore.com)

                  I hope this is helps,

                  CWS

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                  • #10
                    Re: basement white cyrstal growth

                    I've seen similar although not quite to that extent which was caused by moisture leaching through the concrete.

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                    • #11
                      Re: basement white cyrstal growth

                      Originally posted by CWSmith View Post
                      Not seeing it really up close, it could very well be calcium or alkali leaching up through the concrete slab. I presume it does look like a 'growth' of some kind. Also, are you getting any moisture seepage or is it just this white stuff?
                      Yes, it will growth. that part of basement is finished and has a sump pump not far from it.


                      Originally posted by CWSmith View Post
                      Problem of course for you is that whatever is causing it, may also be loosening your tile.
                      becaue it will growth, it loosens my tiles.

                      Originally posted by CWSmith View Post
                      At this point, about the simplest thing you can do is remove the tile and try to seal the floor before retiling.
                      how to seal the floor? use something like dryloc?

                      thanks

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                      • #12
                        Re: basement white cyrstal growth

                        Originally posted by CWSmith View Post
                        The Home Depot carries the Dri-Core product which I've used with good results. (www.dricore.com)
                        CWS
                        I am thinking about dri-core subfloor system. I like it but it is a little expensive than other solutions. I don't know how long it will last?

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                        • #13
                          Re: basement white cyrstal growth

                          Imei,

                          What I meant to say was, "it does NOT look like a growth of some kind".... meaning some kind of biological mold. From what I can see it does appear to be more mineral-like.

                          Yes, DryLoc might do the trick for you, IF you don't have cracks under that tile. If there are cracks, you may have to chisel out those areas and patch them with a good cement made for that purpose, then use the DryLoc.

                          When it rains hard, I have water coming up through a couple of cracks in my basement floor. Problem with mine is that the cement doesn't appear to be very thick as when I step on that area, it actually pushes the water up through the cracks. I'm layed some Dri-Core tiles down just as a tempory measure for now. When it hits the dry season, I'll take them up and patch those cracks, apply DriLoc or something similar and see if that takes care of it. I'll then use the Dri-Core again, once I know that the water isn't actively seeping when it rains.

                          As far as the Dri-Core is concerned, the expense is relative. Not knowing how big your basement area is, but a 25 x 25 ft area would cost a little over $900. Last year the company offered a rebate and I saved about $200.

                          If the basement area is very wet with standing water, the Dri-Cor probably won't last very long. But if it's just "salts" or other mineral deposits, I would expect some decent life out of the stuff. With proper installation, it has a 25 year warranty, but you do need to read the details and caveats (http://www.dricore.com/en/warranty.aspx). It does install rather easily and I've used it in my work area, if for no other reason than it's easier on the legs and feet than standing on concrete.

                          I hope this helps,

                          CWS

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                          • #14
                            Re: basement white cyrstal growth

                            I have this same growth in my basement. It was poured about 27 years ago. No real cracks of signifigance. It is calcium and it will pop tiles. It is caused by moisture leaching though the concrete. Poly under the floor was not a big priority in those days. I did a large area of my rec room in glue down carpet. I did not use anything special other than I cleaned and washed the floor first. I am thinking that the glue may have sealed the floor as I did use a top quality adhesive and I have not noticed any reoccurance or lifting of the carpet. Having said that I think dry core would be your best bet as the tiles in my batroom did the the same thing that yours are doing. I was going to tear them out and put in a heated granite tile floor. Good luck

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