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admin | What Treats Bv | 10.09.2013
How can I get rid of the smell of damp concrete in my studio?I have been working without success on the smell in my 12' x 14' studio for 5 months, so I really hope someone can help me.
I can put my nose right up to the walls and the ceiling and the outlets and not smell anything.
It could then leave your hair with gorgeous permanent waves but would also be leaving some smell which could last for weeks. But when I put my nose right to the floor I smell the dank, musty, yucky smell of damp, dank concrete. I would be very surprised if a vapor barrier was not required for the concrete slab, for 3 reasons. I smelled it last October when I was looking to buy the house, I told the inspector about it but he could not smell anything. Make sure that the juice is evenly distributed from the scalp up to the ends of your hair.Wrap your hair with a towel and let the tomato juice soak on your hair for at least 30 minutes.
Everyone can smell something when they open the door, some people can tolerate it but I can't. But no matter, there is a thing about not having to put a vapor barrier down if the space is not for living - think garage. I have to find a way to block the smell from the source.There is nothing to clean either, the floor was so clean and properly prepared before I put the concrete waterproofing paint down you could have licked it. Now it is really beautiful to look at, the 2 coats of sealer make it so shiny, but there is nothing to clean, there is no way to clean the smell away. It is absorbing the damp from the ground, the smell permeates the coats of paint and sealer. The trench idea won't help because I still have the whole area under the house that the slab is using to absorb the damp and release it into the air in the studio.Water from above is not the problem either, we had a long dry spell this summer, the ground on the surface was like sand, dry sand. I thought if anyone was going to be able to solve this it would be you, and I thank you for trying, and it is obvious you have done a good amount of work on my behalf, but none of your ideas will work.

Since you cannot put holes into the membrane (with nails or screws), the only way a tack strip can be installed is onto T & G plywood. When you put the manufacture recommended sealer around the perimeter (for the membrane), you do so below the vapor barrier sheet.
Its best to use the membrane sealing tape to secure the vapor barrier on top as well, as it will improve the air and water tightness of the seal. For your studio (where no barrier appears to be), you should consider adding it in the same fashion and seal it to the base of the walls.
That way if any moisture (or vapor) is traveling up the sides, it will NOT permeate the room. The additional cost would be minimal as the amount you need to cover the concrete sides isn't very much, but is worth the effort.
Since I don't want to leave you confused let me explain a few things… Ground water is under hydrostatic pressure and moves toward lower pressure areas (like the air above ground).
Water vapor works in the same way in that its attracted to drier areas just like warmer air wants to travel toward colder air.
If there was a lot of water in the ground you would eventually see it on the slab (because there's no barrier to stop it), but in this case its just a constant movement of water vapor that's evaporating. Over time this process has caused odors because the concrete slab doesn't get a chance to dry out and its probably caused some mold or organism growth within the pores of the slab.
The air in between is insulating the two temperatures, thus stopping the formation of condensation. In normal concrete slab installations, the vapor barrier and the crushed rock basically work the same way.
I snapped together some at Lowes yesterday but I did not like the look, the nicer stuff was special order. I was going to wait and try out the plastic before I ordered the special order - or I may use the very nice carpet that is in a spare bedroom that I am getting rid of anyway.kabira canucksgirl3 years agoReplyI had the same kind of issue in my basement.

In your case, the slab is allowing water vapor to evaporate into the air, so the dehumidifier would pull the water out of the air and fill the inner tank (which you then dump out periodically).
I'm not sure how well it'll work on the smell, but its worth a shot.BTW, In case you missed it, I did reply to you about Lowe's and suggested a method for using the poly (if that's your only alternative). It may be coming up through cavities near the sides (I've had a few surprises with a rock breaker from them on seemingly solid concrete).
This would only be likely if the walls aren't bedded in to or on top of the slab, may seem odd but I've seen it quite a few times. I would be doubtful of the concrete itself, since it's well sealed and in general concrete doesn't pick up smells apart from nasty water seeping in to it. If you're stuck for options you could skim it with a coat of cement with waterproofing mix in it, it would mean abusing that perfect finish for adhesion though. And the room is so small that you can't really tell if it is different in different areas but when standing up high on a ladder, smelling the ceiling, the smell does not seem so strong.
It seems stronger when you come down the ladder.Believe me - there was no paint left on the floor when I acid washed it, I had spent 2 months scraping with a 3 inch blade I kept sharpening on a grinder.
I would do about a foot every few days and vacuum as I went.I am sure the previous owner painted it just to look nice. I am sure she thinks I am crazy because she can not smell it, she claims it was her clay that I am smelling, she was a potter. It is not clay, her husband can't smell it either and he told me he just had a new studio built in NC and didn't have vapor barrier put down before the pour because he is not going to live in the studio. He does not understand what I am smelling, he says he never noticed a thing, I believe him too.gmoon3 years agoReplyHow old is the slab?

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