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Stephen Cutler
Stephen Cutler, General Contractor
Category: Home Improvement
Satisfied Customers: 2062
Experience:  35 years of troubleshooting construction, remodel, component & material failures. What to do next
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Sealing old wall Victorian house (1890), Wall construction

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Sealing old wall
Victorian house (1890), Wall construction from outside: bick layer, 1/2" space, brick layer, horsehair plaster, lead paint.At transition from foundation to brick, inner layer of brick rests on a 2" plank to control rising damp; plank long since rotted, I have replaced with modern wood. All other walls have had foam insulation, vapor barrier snd plaster added on the inside. BUT! The stairs to the basement have an original wall. Damp causes it to effloresce (fuzzy deposits, etc), paint flaking for two feet up from plank. (Below that hydraulic cement covers original fieldstone foundation, no problems there.) The passage is narrow and I cannot use the foam/vapbar/wallboard solution.

Hi and thanks fo using

Obviously you still have moisture passing through the mortar at this point and leaching the effloresce to the inside surface. Short of waterproofing the exterior the only other thing with might solve your effloresce would be a parge coat of mortar. Clean the existing brick and mortar with acid first and rinse.

Another option is move the stairways inside wall away from the outside wall to get the width you need to do the foam/vaporbarrier/wallboard.

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