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nofishfisherman

Water In Basement

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Anyone else dealing with water in your basement after all the rain and melting snow?  

 

This is the second winter I've lived in my house.  No water issues last year but this year I've got a 10 -15 foot section of wall letting water in.  There is a known low spot outside on that section of house and its on my list to deal with but it hadn't been letting in water so I kept kicking it down the road.  Guess its time to address it this spring.  I already went out and dug channels for the water to run and also extended the downspout an additional 10 feet so now its running at least 16 feet away from the house.  

 

In the basement I've got the wet carpet and pad pulled back with fans and dehumidifiers going to dry everything out.  Looks like carpet and pad will be fine and I can just lay them back and restretch when dry.  I did however find moldy dry wall and some moldy furring strips along the bottom 2-3 inches of the wall that was hidden behind the baseboard, baseboard shows no sign of any damage or moisture.  I'll cut that drywall out up to maybe 2 feet up and replace a full section just to make sure I get up high enough to get all the mold.  Might also have to replace an old built in cabinet/shelf that goes over the water meter.  Looks like some water and mold hidden in there as well.  Its amazing what you find when you start tearing stuff out.  It can snowball on you pretty quickly.  Thankfully nothing real serious got damaged at least that I'm seeing now.  What I have to tear out and replace is annoying but not the end of the world. Probably cost me a couple hundred bucks and a couple days work. 

 

So how else is dealing with all of this water?

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I have fairly long eaves on my house that really helps keep the snow away from the walls on my house. However when I rake my roof I do end up with piles of snow 3-4 feet away from the house.  Once the melting started I was out there shoveling those away from the low spots.  I for sure got my workout in that day. I think next year I may get the snowblower out and do what the guy across the street did and keep a path around the house clear of the heavy snow.  I'll also be bringing in a lot of dirt to raise up the low spot I have.

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It's going to be a bad year for many. I have lived in the same house for over 25 years and this is the first time we have had water in the basement. 

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I was at menards last night picking up a couple more fans to speed the drying process and judging by how many fans they had left and how many people were in asking questions about pumps it seems like A LOT of people are having issues. That's why I thought I'd start the thread, a little commiserating over the work ahead of us.  

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Posted (edited)

 Do you have a full basement? When we built our house we built split basement. 

 

  We have pretty steep hills going away from my house so we’ve never had a problem with flooding. But I do know my neighbors live lower and they have a full basement and yeah they have water in their basement 

 I knew a contractor who won said that most water in the basement issues have to do with landscaping. Sometimes people like to put raised flowerbeds around their house and they hold the soil back usually with bricks. That can prevent or slow normal runoff

 

And with temps getting even warmer next week, I suspect that problem is going to grow

 

  

Edited by tacklejunkie

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2 hours ago, nofishfisherman said:

Anyone else dealing with water in your basement after all the rain and melting snow?  

 

This is the second winter I've lived in my house.  No water issues last year but this year I've got a 10 -15 foot section of wall letting water in.  There is a known low spot outside on that section of house and its on my list to deal with but it hadn't been letting in water so I kept kicking it down the road.  Guess its time to address it this spring.  I already went out and dug channels for the water to run and also extended the downspout an additional 10 feet so now its running at least 16 feet away from the house.  

 

In the basement I've got the wet carpet and pad pulled back with fans and dehumidifiers going to dry everything out.  Looks like carpet and pad will be fine and I can just lay them back and restretch when dry.  I did however find moldy dry wall and some moldy furring strips along the bottom 2-3 inches of the wall that was hidden behind the baseboard, baseboard shows no sign of any damage or moisture.  I'll cut that drywall out up to maybe 2 feet up and replace a full section just to make sure I get up high enough to get all the mold.  Might also have to replace an old built in cabinet/shelf that goes over the water meter.  Looks like some water and mold hidden in there as well.  Its amazing what you find when you start tearing stuff out.  It can snowball on you pretty quickly.  Thankfully nothing real serious got damaged at least that I'm seeing now.  What I have to tear out and replace is annoying but not the end of the world. Probably cost me a couple hundred bucks and a couple days work. 

 

So how else is dealing with all of this water?

 

How far do you live from a ServiceMaster? I’ve heard people who’ve gotten water in their basement give them great reviews

 

 

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Will also depend on what soil you have and frost and ice on the ground can also be a problem. If you live where there is a lot of clay that doesn't absorb water getting the water and snow away from the foundation is a must

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1 hour ago, Walleyehooker said:

Will also depend on what soil you have and frost and ice on the ground can also be a problem. If you live where there is a lot of clay that doesn't absorb water getting the water and snow away from the foundation is a must

 

Our soil has a lot of clay.  Its really terrible soil.  Regrading sections of the yard is absolutely going to happen as soon as the snow is gone.  For now I've gone out there and dug down into the ground as much as I can with the frozen ground to allow the low spot to drain away from the house and it seems to be working very well.  The low spot is no longer retaining water and I've got a nice river running away from the house.

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1 hour ago, tacklejunkie said:

 

How far do you live from a ServiceMaster? I’ve heard people who’ve gotten water in their basement give them great reviews

 

 

 

I don't think the extent of the damage is beyond what I can do myself.  The carpet and pad look fine and I've got it pulled back and drying well.  The drywall damage is relatively small, I'm just going to cut back more to make sure.  The cabinet/shelves that I need to take out is the biggest job but fairly straight forward. The biggest thing I'll need to figure out is how to seal off the area so that as I start tearing out the moldy stuff it doesn't spread mold spores throughout the rest of the house.  Its already smelling pretty musty down there after disturbing it a little so I want to make sure I seal things off before really tearing into it.  All debris will also be bagged and sealed before bringing through the rest of the house.

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Just now, Walleyehooker said:

Might b a good idea to get something to spray on mold area to help kill it or keep it from getting worse

 

That and getting it dried out as quickly as possible is key.

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Im getting it dried out, that was the first step and the reason I pulled up the carpet the day I noticed it all.  Step 2 will happen in the morning (I won't be home until late tonight) and that will be to spray down as much of the mold as I can in hopes of killing as much of it as possible before I start demolition.   I probably won't have time to do demo until mid next week because I'm out of town starting sunday morning so I'll spray it all down and start the killing process now. 

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16 hours ago, nofishfisherman said:

 

I don't think the extent of the damage is beyond what I can do myself.  The carpet and pad look fine and I've got it pulled back and drying well.  The drywall damage is relatively small, I'm just going to cut back more to make sure.  The cabinet/shelves that I need to take out is the biggest job but fairly straight forward. The biggest thing I'll need to figure out is how to seal off the area so that as I start tearing out the moldy stuff it doesn't spread mold spores throughout the rest of the house.  Its already smelling pretty musty down there after disturbing it a little so I want to make sure I seal things off before really tearing into it.  All debris will also be bagged and sealed before bringing through the rest of the house.

 

I’ve heard it can be pricey but a couple of people I know who have used Servicemaster for water in the basement sounds like they didn’t have to tear out the carpet or the drywall. My understanding is they have this great big machine that sucks up all the moisture that they leave in your house for a week

 

 The problem it also dries you out from what I’ve heard.  When I was growing up, we would occasionally get water in our basement and I remember it being a pain in the one-just-like-silly-me 

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I would have maybe  considered Servicemaster but once i pulled the baseboard off there was obvious sign of previous water damage. The drywall had to come out.

 

I cancelled some plans for the day and spent the day cutting out the bad drywall and furring strips. It ended up being roughly a 10' x 2' section. Really the damage was under a foot high but i cut back extra just to make sure i got it all. I was also able to salvage the cabinet and shelves. There were only 2 bad boards that were easy to pull and replace with new.  So now ive got all the bad stuff out and I cleaned the walls with a bleach mix. I'll paint it over with killz in a few days and then once i have addresses the outside grade issues ill replace the drywall.  

 

All in all it could have been much worse. 

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On 3/15/2019 at 9:54 AM, Walleyehooker said:

Landscaping makes a big difference to get the water away from the outside wall/foundation. Pull the snow away from the wall to

   +1  Get the water running away from the house.  

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Sounds like you’re on the right track @nofishfisherman.

 

You could hang a poly barrier to contain the area if you’re getting musty smells drifting into the rest of the house.  Zip Wall poles work really well for putting up the barrier.  Over lap the seam you’d use for a door and keep it taped shut when you’re not using it.  It’ll also help contain dust if you’re mudding and sanding the new sheet rock.

 

Putting up the barrier would’ve sped up the drying process also if you were able to use dehumidifiers.  Fans are fine but dehu’s are better.  With fans you’d accelerate the process if they could be vented to the outside.

 

A little late to the party with this advice but maybe some will help you or others.

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just remember that water will follow the path of least resistance, meaning  that it may look like it is all contained to one area but the water may have been running across a beam to another area altogether.  I work in insurance and see and hear very unique situations often!.

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On 3/18/2019 at 3:24 PM, ozzie said:

just remember that water will follow the path of least resistance, meaning  that it may look like it is all contained to one area but the water may have been running across a beam to another area altogether.  I work in insurance and see and hear very unique situations often!.

 

I have been a bit concerned about water that I may not be seeing.  When I cut back the wet drywall I cut it back to a point well beyond where I stopped seeing evidence of water.  I suppose its possible I still missed something but I feel like I've done what I can do short of tearing out additional areas that aren't showing any signs of water.  The entire basement will get torn out and remodeled down the road and at that point I'll look over every inch for and signs of hidden water but for now I can only address areas where I'm seeing it. 

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On 3/17/2019 at 10:30 AM, Wanderer said:

Sounds like you’re on the right track @nofishfisherman.

 

You could hang a poly barrier to contain the area if you’re getting musty smells drifting into the rest of the house.  Zip Wall poles work really well for putting up the barrier.  Over lap the seam you’d use for a door and keep it taped shut when you’re not using it.  It’ll also help contain dust if you’re mudding and sanding the new sheet rock.

 

Putting up the barrier would’ve sped up the drying process also if you were able to use dehumidifiers.  Fans are fine but dehu’s are better.  With fans you’d accelerate the process if they could be vented to the outside.

 

A little late to the party with this advice but maybe some will help you or others.

 

I did all of those things.  Poly barrier went up during the demo phase so I wasn't spreading the nasty stuff around the house.  I had fans and dehumidifiers working to dry things out.  was actually able to get everything 100% dry in less than 24 hours which I thought was pretty good considering how much water the carpet pad was holding on to, it was like a fully saturated sponge.  I still have the carpet and pad pulled back to dry in case there is any residual moisture that I can't feel.  I also picked up an air purifier and have that running to help take any residual musty smell out of the air and to help clean the air if there was any remaining mold spores floating around.  The musty smell is about 95% better than it was before demo. 

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