The hot water heater leaked and filled our basement with three inches of water. Do all the walls have to be removed and replaced?
Not necessarily. Often we can dry them inside and save them. Walls with insulation must be cut open at the bottom to dry.
What can we do to prevent water from coming into our home?
Inspect the way the ground all around your foundation is sloped. It must be pitched away from the house to prevent gutter overflow from running towards and under your foundation. Also make sure that all down spouts run at least a few feet away from the house. Have any foundation or basement floor cracks repaired. Install a sump pump and add insurance coverage for pump failure.
If you see mold or smell odors in your home your problems are not over as things are still damp and need to be properly dehumidified and treated. If you can't see the problem, it may be inside a wall, in which case you should have someone inspect the wall by carefully cutting it open.
Our furnace backed up and caused smoke damage throughout our home. The bedroom doors were closed, does that mean the smoke did not get in there?
Unfortunately, smoke can easily enter from around and under the door, as well as under the walls and through plumbing openings in the floor. This room needs to be checked and properly cleaned for smoke damage, a service we can easily provide.
What are the symptoms of too much humidity in a home?
A few of the symptoms you may notice include a musty odor, allergic reactions, visible mold growth, cupped wood floors, feeling "sticky" or "muggy," visible condensation/water stains, and peeling wallpaper or blistering paint.
Should I spray something to get rid of the musty smell in my basement?
Spraying may provide temporary relief, but you really need to lower the humidity level by installing a good quality dehumidifier.
Why can't I just open the basement doors and windows to get rid of the smell?
Doing so may bring in damper or warmer air that would cause more condensation to form. Keep the basement doors and windows closed while running a dehumidifier.
What else can I do to dissipate the odor?
Remove all organic materials such as cardboard boxes, paper, clothing, and piles of wood, which are food sources for mold.