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Precast basement walls vs. poured walls

Colby Forester | Posted in General Questions on

I am currently deciding on Precast vs Poured concrete walls. The fear of water is always in my mind with a basement and seen where precast walls are inherently waterproof above 5000psi. The areas where they join together worry me as that could breakdown over time and leaking. What is your experience with one compared to the other? Is precast a better option?

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  1. GBA Editor
    Peter Yost | | #1

    It's a great question Jody -

    The joint details and seals for pre-cast systems, such as Superior Walls, need to be durable as the panels themselves. We don't really know how long the seals will last. Superior Walls (started in 1981) was more broadly commercialized in the early 1990s; anecdotally, I have never heard of a seal or joint failure for Superior Walls. The seal detail specs polyurethane sealant, which is a "durable" sealant. How long sealants last can be a function of what sort of stress they "see:" UV, temperature changes, moisture content, etc. (see this Construction Specifier article: https://www.constructionspecifier.com/durability-of-elastomeric-sealants/). The seals in Superior Walls may see much less stress than when polyurethane liquid sealant is used above grade. That's a good thing.

    The warranty for Superior Walls is provided not by the manufacturer, but by the individual franchise. You have posed a question to GBA that you should also pose to your pre-cast wall dealer.

    Peter

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