Does an underground CMU stem wall need to be dampproofed?
I am building a house in Harrisonburg, Virginia, with a suspended front porch concrete slab. One side of the slab rests on a 4″ ledge cast into the poured concrete house stem wall. The other side rests on an 8″ CMU wall that extends down about 10 feet to undisturbed soil. I am planning on back-filling soil most of the way on both sides of the CMU wall.
Do I need to do any damp- or water-proofing of the CMU wall for structural reasons? I read another thread on GBA talking about how water and salt will gradually eat away concrete. Will a subterranean CMU wall gradually disintegrate if not properly sealed? If so, what is the best way to handle this situation?
Here’s the blog post I read on efflorescence:
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