Our foundation has a 2" hole for the water main / well pipe which is about 7' below the ground outside. During spring thaw when there is several feet of snow melting, the ground gets saturated, and water leaks in between the pipe and the cement foundation.

Ideas for repairing from the inside would be ideal, however even options for what we can do by digging up around the foundation on the outside are appreciated.

This site suggests caulk or cement (perhaps this means Quikrete Hydraulic Water-Stop Cement?) will fail, epoxy is better though will eventually fail due to rigidity, preferring instead injecting a “high-viscosity polyurethane” (Perhaps 3M 525 or 3M 550 ?).

I also found this video suggesting this Water Line, Pipe and Penetration Kit

I've found 4 existing questions here, though no conclusive answer:

  1. Water seepage around the water main pipe's underground entry hole thru concrete foundation
  • talks about a foundation seal compound on the outside, though not specific enough to figure out which to try or how to apply.
  • talks about cleaning and packing around the pipe from the inside with Wet patch? or Siliconizer? --> these seem to be roofing products, do we have anyone who can verify success with this approach?
  1. How to seal a pipe pass-through in a basement wall
  • suggests using epoxy, though as I summarized above, it seems some sites suggest epoxy is too rigid and thus will fail over time.
  1. Well pipe leaking at where pipe comes to the house. (Images, Video)
  • No proposed solution.
  1. What's the best way to patch a 1.5" hole in a poured foundation wall?
  • Proposes Duct Seal --> The product page doesn't seem to talk about sealing leaks in foundation, is this the right long term solution?
  • Proposes expanding foam is not good (doesn't elaborate on why).
  • proposes a channel outside the house to keep water away --> won't work for us, as this is from spring melt of many feet of snow (the channel would be buried).
  • 1
    If you dig up outside, your best option would be to add a drain line of 2% slope to remove the water to a ditch (if terrain allows) or a drywell away from the house. As for conclusive answers, unless someone is selling a product there are many options, and they may work or fail depending on local conditions, care of installation, and amount of pressure (arguably also a local condition.)
    – Ecnerwal
    Commented Jun 14, 2021 at 13:54
  • Define "conclusive answer"? No two situations are identical, and you have many good options there.
    – isherwood
    Commented Jun 14, 2021 at 13:58
  • Thanks for the comments! (1) drain is a problem since this happens in spring during thaw, there is several feet of snow this year, and so the chunks of snow made it very hard to drain away. we did clear a several foot path away from the house, though the ground is simply too saturated. (2) conclusive answer, I was hoping for folks to be able to chime in with experience of having used the solution several times, and ideally with some report that it had worked after several years. The answers in other questions are more of ideas. (3) updated main text with why the existing answers aren't ideal.
    – me_online
    Commented Jun 14, 2021 at 16:45
  • 1
    Not at all an expert so not posting an answer, but it seems to me that the problem is due to the water table during the thaw rising above the floor of the (basement?) foundation, so water wants to get up through holes in the floor. The classic solution would be to install drain tiles under the foundation leading to a sump pump.
    – Paul Price
    Commented Jun 14, 2021 at 16:56

2 Answers 2


The classic "definitive" solution is to use hydraulic cement. It expands as it cures, and modern versions also include various chemical additives to improve post-cure waterproofness. Hydraulic cement is designed to fix exactly this problem.

Standard epoxy is a terrible idea. It dries hard, becomes brittle faster than cement, and does not expand and contract at the same rate as your concrete wall. All around just a worse version of hydraulic cement.

There are other solutions that attempt to do as good a job as or better than hydraulic cement, such as silicone based injectables or wraps that swell when wet. Silicone is completely unforgiving with surface prep. The surface must be dust free, completely dry and free of oils and solvents. Otherwise the silicone won't adhere properly, resulting in early failure. Wraps do not stand up to or resist long term heave.

Hydraulic cement does not suffer from either of these problems.


You are experiencing seasonal groundwater fluctuations that causing the seepage through small cracks. If it only around the pipe, I suggest using a hydrophobic-expandable sealer to cut off the water path. The suggested product is shown below, but it is not the only one in the market.


  • Make a deep grove/slot around the pipe.
  • Thoroughly clean the surface of the hole (by pressure wash or a wet-dry vacuum).
  • Follow the instruction from the manufacturer.

For a better result, I suggest preparing a plywood board, with the pipe in the middle, fastened to the wall to resist the pressure from expansion.

enter image description here enter image description here https://usa.sika.com/en/construction/concrete/concrete-accessories/waterstop-systems/hydrophilic-swelling-waterstop/swellstop.html

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