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First post about my 100 year old house

Hello - I just moved into 1 100 year old home in Montclair, NJ. The house overall excellent condition but it needs some upgrading and TLC which I am working on. The basement is basically dry although we are in a flood zone. During the inspection, it was raining quite heavily and there was a small amount of water on one side of the basement floor. In discussing with the inspector, he had two suggestions when we looked at that area from the outside;

1. better route the water drainage from the roof as one of the downspouts was close by (easy - did that)

2. fill in any cracks using masonry caulk

Along that side of the house, there is a cement walkway but it had been covered by woodchips. I've removed the woodchips (hate them anyway) and I'm ready to fill in the cracks. Questions:

1. Is there a favorite caulk to use on the foundation for a stucco home? I'm not talking about visual cracks on a wall - I watched a very good video on YouTube that showed using a combo silicone/latex 35 year caulk which drys clear fixes that very easily.

2. At the foundation, there is some dirt and stuff that is in the deeper cracks which after sweeping and cleaning - it just is impossible to get it all out - can I still apply caulk in there and hope that it bonds with enough of the area where the stucco meets the concrete?

thank you in advance for any help.


Re: First post about my 100 year old house

Hey Steven- If your addressing minor issues with the downspout and diverting water away from your home, that's sounds like a good step in the right direction. Maybe now you just need a comparable downpour (to the one going on during the inspection) to know that it worked. Hope so.

Regarding the caulking and the dirt: You're right about the dirt keeping things from bonding properly. Wet dirt will be harder to remove then dirt that's damp or has dried. Try letting it dry if you can by waiting until things have been warmer in your area for a while and then pick at it (with some tool the size of a toothpick maybe) followed by sucking out more dirt with a shop vac.

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