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HELP! How to waterproof brick garage from my side - neighbours garden is 1m high

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  1. #1
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    Default HELP! How to waterproof brick garage from my side - neighbours garden is 1m high

    Hi there,
    Desperately seeking help to waterproof my single brick garage wall from my side as neighbours are not interested in moving their garden bed away from the wall on their side. It is 1m high on their side and water is seeping through from about 2ft above the ground on my side. Their whole property slopes towards my garage.

    When I bought the place it was already like this and I didn't realise so much water was seeping in until we concreted the floor and now the water cannot run down into the dirt between the old brick floor. I thought it just had rising damp and mould.
    We are getting around 1L of water coming in from their side every time it rains heavily. We cannot use the space at all, and ideally I want to insulate and plaster the room so I can use it as a studio.

    Is there any way that I can waterproof it from my side? I tried tar and it just seeped through.
    Willing to try anything!

  2. #2
    NRB
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    Your neighbour has some part to play in your problem,check with your council but I am sure water coming from next door is their responsibility

  3. #3
    Deactivated User Marc's Avatar
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    i don't know whose fault it is nor your local legislation, but to fix it you must gain access to next door, dig out all the soil that is against your wall all the way down to the footings. Let it dry and apply a heavy waterproofing membrane. Then buy a thick plastic membrane and place in the dich, covering the bottom and the wall on your side. Place a length of 100 mm agi pipe, to collect the water along the wall and chanell it towards the lower side away from your garage. Backfill with 20 mm aggregate.
    2 L of concentrated Glyphosate to stop anything growing around your french drain is optional

  4. #4
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    Thanks guys, I agree but the neighbour has planted a beautiful garden up against the wall and is not interested in digging it up, I would also like to keep the peace if possible.
    Any way that I can seal things from my side alone?

  5. #5
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    Hi Chony,

    There are quite a number of products that you can use to "negatively" waterproof the inside of your garage wall. The problem is that by "tarring" it (probably bitumen?) you've actually made it impossible to do so without completely stripping the bitumen first by sandblasting.

    Right now your best bet is to do what Marc above has said.
    The WaterStop Shop
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  6. #6
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    Thanks for the advice guys. I have used water based bitumen paint on the inside, and I am regretting it as I think the mortar might be breaking down faster since because now there is no air on my side I'm not sure if I can get it off.

    Unfortunately my neighbours are not keen on having their garden dug up and I really want to keep the peace, but it's true I might need to get the council involved. Another friend suggested I create a garden bed inside the garage but that doesn't sound like much fun either...

  7. #7
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    [QUOTE=wspivak;1107564]Hi Chony,

    There are quite a number of products that you can use to "negatively" waterproof the inside of your garage wall.


    I am interested in such a product for domestic use on Besser bricks.

  8. #8
    Member wspivak's Avatar
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    Unfortunately, the only sure fire way to remove bitumen from brickwork is sandblasting.
    The WaterStop Shop
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  9. #9
    Deactivated User Marc's Avatar
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    Saturating the brick wall with silicone products for rising damp can work. Since you drill a hole for each tube of silicone, whatever is on the wall at the moment does not matter much.
    Some of the products like liquid damp proof are soluble in water until they solidify by reacting with the minerals in the brick.
    But you will need to do the treatment for each row of bricks up to the level of the soil next door. What's that? 100 tubes of silicone?
    Possible.

    As for the council involvment, I am sure you can get permission to dig up the garden if the council intervenes, after all it is the water ingress from neighbouring property that creates the problem. in fact, depending on council and state, you may even get to share the cost of the repairs. Only guessing though. If you get a "green" council you may have to replace the neighbours' plants with evolution historically accurate natives ... you never know.

  10. #10
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    Is sandblasting possible on an old single brick wall?

  11. #11
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    You're probably best to speak to a sandblaster to be certain, but I don't see why not in general unless the wall is in absolutely terrible condition.
    The WaterStop Shop
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    OK great, thanks guys! I had never heard of negative waterproofing so have just googled that and found someone to come take a look to see if it's worth trying.

    Will also try talking to the neighbours again.

    Much appreciated )

  13. #13
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    If it's a standard single brick wall I doubt it's engineered to be retaining 1m of fill either.

  14. #14
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    Id be concerned about the pressure that 1m of wet soil is putting on your single brick wall

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  15. #15
    Deactivated User Marc's Avatar
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    If the dirt was piled up against the wall after the garage was build, you can request for it to be removed.

  16. #16
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    I would take note of what Marc posted in #14, regardless your neighbour is being completely unreasonable if there is a damp problem, if the soil is natural ground level then you are stuck with the build up but if this is built up soil it should not be against a single brick wall in the first place and secondly it should have been waterproofed to prevent leakage and damage. While the law is clear the remedy will not be that simple, they have possibly created a nuisance and they should be the ones to fix it unless the garage was built at a later date. However in the interest of keeping the peace that is not a point to stand on I guess.

  17. #17
    Golden Member havabeer's Avatar
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    Marc is on the money.

    The proper way to stop this and not have it cause damage is the process he mentioned. Actually the simplest way is to just remove the dirt.

    Dig away the dirt.
    Dig away down to where the bricks meet the footing/slab
    Clean the wall with a pressure washer
    Wait a week for it to really dry out
    Go over the wall with a couple of coats of waterproof membrane (I used one of the cromellins brand ones that is meant to be backfilled over)
    Install coreflute agaisnt the wall
    Install an ag drain (the bigger diameter the better)
    Back fill with aggregate
    Put some soil ontop or re-install the garden bed

    I had to do this basically around the whole length of my house to stop water getting underneath. I think i removed around 7 cubic meters of dirt by hand, and re filled it with aggregate, by hand.

    It was a big job but its the old way to do it properly
    Remember if you don't sin, then Jesus died for nothing

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    Havabeer thanks for that step by step instructions, but just found out form the previous owner that he dug the garage into the garden! So actually the fault is with my property... he said he didn't let anywhere for the water to drain below the wall and it was always an issue - if only homes came with history manuals!

    So sandblasting and negative waterproofing it is!

  19. #19
    Community Moderator phild01's Avatar
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    It is hard to imagine that waterproofing inside can resist a 1m high wall of soil retention, and then overcoming eventual cracks. Love to know.

  20. #20
    Member wspivak's Avatar
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    There are some good quality negative tanking membranes available which will work great unless the wall cracks. Try either Drizoro Maxseal Flex or Gripset C-1P.

    Best of luck
    The WaterStop Shop
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  21. #21
    Deactivated User Marc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phild01 View Post
    It is hard to imagine that waterproofing inside can resist a 1m high wall of soil retention, and then overcoming eventual cracks. Love to know.
    It will not and even if it did, the wall is still saturated and will succumb to the moisture.
    If diggin out the soil is not possible, the bricks need to be saturated with liquid silicone, the whole lot of them. A coat from the inside is wishful thinking. Negative or positive.

  22. #22
    Community Moderator phild01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marc View Post
    .... the wall is still saturated and will succumb to the moisture.
    Wondered about that as well.

  23. #23
    Senior Member YoungBolt's Avatar
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    Sounds like you have a prick of a neighbour.

    Also rather interesting that a garden bed can rack up so high. Do you live on the side of a huge hill?

    Either way it's worth noting that the brick wall was likely never designed to take that kind of weight & pressure. People seem to think that bricks are like concrete walls, but they're not. The moisture is inconvenient but it's also really bad as it will erode the mortar and weaken the structure, and to that the weight of the soil against that wall it's a disaster waiting to happen. And when it all goes wrong you'll be left holding the bag.

    There needs to be some form of retaining wall between the wall and the garden bed.
    Have a nice conversation first, but ensure you make it clear that some action needs to be taken in a set time frome or else you'll have no option but to go through legal channels to have the issue sorted.
    Make sure you write down the time, place and what was said in the conversation. Then if the neighbour doesn't make any changes, then apply to VCAT and see if once they recieve some paperwork they might just give two sh!ts and fix the problem. If not, get some professional assessments of what needs to be done & the risk if anything isn't done, get some detailed quotes for the work needed, take lots of photos of the moisture buildup and go to VCAT and argue your case. I cant see how they can't rule in your favour. Maybe also give a ring to the VBA to see if they can send some information on what the garage wall was designed to bare.

  24. #24
    Seasoned DIY droog's Avatar
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    If you waterproof on the inside up to ground level and the bricks remain wet, won’t you end up with rising damp through the rest of the wall ?

  25. #25
    BIM
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    I would recommend the repairs be implemented on the inside of the garage wall
    You will lose 160mm of space ( 50mm concrete fill + brickwork) and upgrade the concrete footings
    The ledge will extent above the gl next door and around?
    hth

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    Hi everyone! So I thought about all your suggestions and advice and the risk of rising damp etc we have decided to build an internal garden bed against the inside wall of the garage.

    We will reinforce the wall with a metal frame and then cut a thin drain into the concrete floor to allow water coming into the internal garden bed wall to drain somewhat to the dirt below.

    The internal garden bed wall will be about knee height and will hopefully be 100% waterproof on the room side! I plan on building it out of brick.

    To waterproof the garden bed wall we are planning to do 2 coats of bitumen paint and then apply builders plastic going into the lip of the drain we cut into the concrete floor before placing rocks at the bottom and then either dirt or pots.

    After all that is done we will seal the concrete floor and paint it with thick mould proof paint.

    Any extra advice is much appreciated! Fingers crossed this solves the mould / damp / neighbour relations issue )

  27. #27
    Golden Member havabeer's Avatar
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    Can you put up a picture of the area? It sonds like youre just going to hide the problem with a garden bed?
    Remember if you don't sin, then Jesus died for nothing

  28. #28
    Community Moderator phild01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by havabeer View Post
    Can you put up a picture of the area? It sonds like youre just going to hide the problem with a garden bed?
    ...and still might leak!

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