Monday, February 14, 2011

Basement Demolition

Only 2/3 of the house is above the basement. The rest is crawl space. The basement walls and floor has flaking paint. That is as close as it comes to being finished. Twenty years ago, the cement slab was torn up around the 3 outer walls to install drain tile and a sump pump. However, on spring days when the snow was melting rapidly and it rained, water came up in the middle of the floor along a tiny crack going the length of the basement.
Sketch of basement. The tiny crack went from the workshop almost all the
way to the east wall, causing 1/2" of standing water about once a year.
When they poured new concrete over the drain tile, they left a 3/4 inch gap between the slab and the wall. The reason for that was to catch potential water leaking in through the cinder block walls. However, the result was that we got humidity problems along the edges of the basement and even boxes up on ventilated shelves got very moldy. From April through September we had to have a dehumidifier running.

Demolition of bathroom (left) and workshop (right).
The crawl space is behind these  rooms.
Early January, we had managed to remove most of our shelves and boxes from the basement and the builders tore out an old disgusting bathroom. The old messy and dark workshop with rusty tools also had to go. How refreshing to see it all go!

Demolition completed and a few rows of cinder blocks
removed to give access to the crawl space behind.
In one day, the floor in front of the crawl space wall was cleared and ready to be cut open for drain tile installation.

The builders also opened up between the basement and the crawl space so we could see what it looked like for the first time in about 30 year. Thankfully, it looked dry and, except for lots of cobweb, reasonably clean.


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