Pipes are installed mostly by cutting the walls for electrical or plumbing works. The area where the pipes move within the wall is known as pipe penetration. The holes of pipe penetration after pipe installation are then filled with mortar.
Pipe Penetration Leakages
Pipe penetration leakage is clear when there is seeping water out of the walls in the location of the pipeline. A lot of times this happens during the construction phase, proper attention is not given to the sealing areas of the pipes when they were installed into the foundation walls. Over time, due to hydrostatic pressure and corrosion around the pipe, the concrete strength deteriorates. Thus, water passes through weakened concrete causing leakage. If it is left untreated, it may decrease the structure's service life and deteriorate the concrete.
The pipe penetration warning signs are:
Visible Stains- there are stains on the wall in the place the pipe passes through the foundation walls.
Water Leakage- leakage is around the pipe penetration.
Mold- the wall dampness over a time causes mold growth.
The water damage and leakage then begins to get into your home and cause damage to the basement. It usually will find easy entry points to get into your home. Identifying the leak's warning signs early on will help in rectifying it before the damage is serious.
Pipe, ducts, vents, and conduits are required at some point to connect your home to have services such as water and gas installed. The pipe penetrations develop in vulnerable spots like these and that is when the water begins to make its way inside.
What to Look For?
Look around all the pipes as they enter your home, especially in the basement. If you notice water leaking or dark damp patches around the pipes, pipe penetrations, or on the walls, that is a good sign that it needs waterproofing. A good time to search is right after heavy rainfall and you will see the leaking of pipe penetrations.
Why Does This Happen?
As the conduits, pipes, and air ducts are installed during construction they need to be sealed properly to ensure no leaking. However, the sealing may not be tight enough or installed properly. This seal with time breaks and allows water to find entry around the pipes. If you find water pooling against your home or is rising due to hydrostatic pressure, it means pipe penetrations are causing trouble.
What Are the Solutions?
The DIY solutions are applying sealants filling in the areas enveloping the pipe penetration to stop leakage. However, this sealant is a temporary solution and may begin leaking in other places.
We encourage you to seek a professional for advice when you notice water seeping through pipe penetrations. Looking for experts that specialize in pipe penetration waterproofing will save you time and give you the confidence that the job will be done right!