Cut down a tree or remove a section instead?

I have a mature maple tree in my backyard, about 30 feet outside my kids' bedroom. The tree is V-shaped, with two major trunks splitting from the base about 3 feet off the ground. One of these trunks is overhanging over the roof of our house.
Recently we noticed a crack in the tree at the base (on both sides), going all the way down to the ground. There is also some tree juice coming out of the crack.
A tree-removal professional came out and said that the tree can split down the middle and needs to be removed. Another professional said that he can remove one of the trunks (the one overhanging the house) and leave the other trunk in place.
I am leaning toward removing the entire tree. But I am told that mature trees such as this maple tree help keep water out of our basement by absorbing it thru their roots. Any truth to this claim?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 2 Jul 2005 19:33:29 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

You have not explored all of your options. Pay a qualified arborist to come out and explain the pros and cons of pruning, cabling, and removal. Then call another to see if they agree. All you will get from the "free estimates" guys is an estimate of what they will charge to do whatever they most like to do. It's great if you already know what you want, but not so great if you are relying on their advice to make a major decision.
An ISA Certified Arborist is more likely to know what's best for this tree than some random phone number. A member of the American Society of Consulting Arborists is more likely to know what's best than just an ISA CA. Many cities have arborists who do consultations only; since they don't do any of the work they recommend, you may feel more confident that they won't suggest something you don't need. In any event, a well informed arborist will most likely be able to help you make an informed decision, then act on it, whatever it is. There are not always clear-cut answers questions with trees; you have to balance your tolerance for risk against the costs (both financial and intangible) of losing the tree.
disclaimer: I am an ISA Certified Arborist and so may be viewed as biased in this matter. I do noy believe that clouds my advice, though. If you told me you wanted a new roof, or a plumber, or whatever, I would say pay someone who knows what's what to come tell you what's best, rather than looking for the lowball bid and doing whatever that guy might say is good enough. You get what you pay for.
good luck, Keith Babberney ISA Certified Arborist #TX-236
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Keith, thank you for your advice. I will call a local arborist to find out about other options. Thanks again!
Andre
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.