I purchased a home in Maryland 6 months ago. During a heavy rainfall,
I happened to glance into one of the air ducts and saw about 2-3 inches
of water. These houses are about 40 yrs old and built on concrete
slab. I have had 4 or 5 different people out here and no one can tell
me for sure what to do. The waterproofing company suggested a 20k
trench to be dug around the home. The HVAC people said to cap the
vents and run the ac in the ceiling. (this is a two story home). The
other HVAC guy said he would dig up my floors and find the leaking
pipes. The other two guys said that they would just "live with it".
Please tell me is if you know of ANYTHING else to try. Thank you!
Sorry to hear of your problem. That sucks!
I'm also sorry to see you've met alt.hvac's pair of village idiots.
Perhaps you, like many others that came before you, actually assumed
this would be a place to get reasonable hvac advice. Sadly they're
long on quips and short on helpfulness (among other things, at least
so say the ladies).
The alt.home.repair newsgroup has a broader spectrum of folks, a
higher percentage of helpful ones, and a much lower percentage of
completely unhelpful 'tards. I've added that group to the
distribution on this message and set followups to alt.home.repair.
Can you describe the grading around your home? Do you have positive
slope away from the house? If not, a properly constructed swale
around the house will certainly help water penetration during a heavy
rain, but on a slab, that does seem like a hell of a lot of work to do
when you aren't protecting a basement. Of course, it's no shock the
waterproofing company quoted you on the only work they know how to do.
:-) The overhead re-routing of the vents seems like an inventive
workaround, but for the heating season at least, having the vents on
the floor would likely give you more comfort. And god knows what it'd
take or if it's even possible to get a larger duct trunk up to the
first floor ceiling to cover the whole house's heating/cooling load.
How often does this water penetration happen? If it's infrequent
enough to be mitigated with a shopvac I'd be tempted to go that route
absent any better ideas. Though I'd also be worried about the
ductwork rusting out entombed in a thick layer of concrete.
I might also have a few more foundation specialist types out for their
thoughts and other quotes on improving drainage away from your
foundation that won't cost $20,000. Of course I'd first make sure my
downspouts nad gutters are doin their thing and downspout extenders
are being used to get that water well away from the foundation.
A photo of the home that shows some of the grading situation may be
helpful too for folks to toss out suggestions.
Yeah, right. Alt.Homo.Repair is OK if you like to hear from a bunch of
wanna-be Tim Taylors who take more pride in trying to be "helpful" than in
excellence in home repair.
I guess if it feels good to you to, then knock yourself out.
As for alt.hvac: Just because you don't understand all the "professional
language" doesn't mean you can't learn something if you aren't such a whiny
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