Thursday, April 8, 2010

Moisture and Water Problems, Part 2

I may have solved the water problem but does not mean that the moisture problem is under control. I define moisture as humidity not standing water. I might not have water in the basement this year but my house has always been humid. Some people might be thinking the house is to air tight but this is a house build in the 1930’s and still has no insulation in the wall. When you touch the outside walls they are ice cold and you can feel the drafts coming out along the floor and baseboards. I would think there would be plenty of holes for the humid to escape. I will admit that I do need to put in a vent in the bathroom and kitchen. The bathroom is on this summer's To DO list but the kitchen will wait until I remodel it.

So what could be causing the moisture problem in the house and basement? After talking to a long time residents, I found out there are springs in the area and beside that there is a creek running through the property behind mind. So all the water draining through the ground passes the house and toward the creek and with the possibility of springs in the area the ground water is close to the surface. Here is a picture showing what happens, when we have a heavy down pour in back of my house. This happens at least three or four times during the year. Last year I saw a waterfall from the creek to the tree showing on the right side.

The walls in the unfinished basement have the paint popping off the wall from the water vapor passing through the walls. The areas are also having a white power building on the wall as show in the photo below. I started to clean the exposed cement wall with a wire brush to remove the loose cement, paint and mineral build up on the walls. I brought wire brushes that I can attach to my drill, it did a good job. After I removed all the loose material I covered area with hydraulic cement. Hopefully this will reinforce the wall and stop the moisture from traveling through the walls. Any cracks found in the foundation also were filled in with the hydraulic cement. After all that, the walls are covered with a waterproof paint.

My goal was to finish the basement over the winter but there are always delays and of over estimating what you are capable to get done. The complete to do list was:
1. Paint the floor in the sewing room and the unfinished section with Watertite paint
2. Finish drywall the closet in the sewing room where the oil tank was. This involved waterproofing cement wall, insulate the wall with Styrofoam, hang drywall, and install a closet organizer.
3. Repair exposed cement wall and paint them with Watertite paint.

The next post will show what I finished.

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