I'm living in a death trap!

I was looking for articles on the net as to how I could help dry out my damp basement. This article scared the crap out of me.
http://www.foamhome.net/Print_Solution.htm
The only problem is that I've never really heard about people dying from moldy basements. I was just going to spray bleach around a little and call it good. My living room carpet may be infested with mites, mold, and all sorts of nasty stuff too. Will my house insurance cover the expense to have my house torn down and rebuilt due to a wet basement?
Steve
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Let's face it. That article is trying to scare you so you will buy their products.
Can mold kill, sure it can. Does it do it often, no. We all live around mold. I eat the stuff, mushrooms. Most mold is harmless to humans.
However there is a real danger with some molds and damp homes are not healthy homes. If the mold is not a problem the moisture will damage the structure in other ways.
What little of that article I read leads me to believe they did not give very good advice about how to eliminate excessive moisture from a basement.
The very first and most important rule is to eliminate the moisture from the foundation, not from the basement. That means making sure downspouts and drained away from the foundation and that the ground is graded so it slopes away from the foundation in all directions. If that does not do it, the next step is to provide a drain at the base of the foundation on the outside.
Only if all the above fail, do you look to a solution inside.
--
Joseph E. Meehan

26 + 6 = 1 It's Irish Math
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Mushrooms are fungi, not mold.
But thanks for playing!
- Bullethead
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From the URL above:
"A good way to check for mites and molds is to check the sun's rays coming through the windows. If you see thousands of floating specks you are seeing mold and mite fecal matter. It is coming from the carpet and padding. "
Funny, in my last house I saw thousands of floating specks in the sunlight. The only thing is there were no carpets in the house and the basement was very dry. So, what were all those flecks? Dust, just plain old dust. What a cheap scare tactic.
"Some molds are deadly. Several people die each year as a result of mold toxins."
Several people a year? Oh, my god! Call out the Marines! This has to be a health disaster of end-of-the-world catastrophic proportions. How many people choke to death eating hot dogs each year?
I wonder what type of "engineer" the author is. I could go on and on, but the coffee is ready.

Just above everyone where I live has a damp basement or crawl space. I run a dehumidifier 24x7 which reduced the R/H down to 32%. No more musty odors.
I have to do some fairly expensive work to divert the water away from the foundation. Once the clay around the foundation gets saturated, it never seems to dry out.
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No your insurance won't pay to have the house torn down, or replaced. If it burned down they would.
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On 18 Jul 2003 12:46:58 -0700, miles snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Miles) wrote:

Do you have a reference on this ? I find it hard to believe that silicone escaping into the body does not pose a health threat.
Bob
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Well, everything poses a health threat in sufficient amounts. Even dihydride monoxide (H2O) can be deadly. A better question is whether leaking implants are dangerous enough to justify the hoopla.
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We have much the same situation and my wife is asthmatic. What I do periodically is fill my paint sprayer attachment for my compressor with laundry bleach and spray it around. Good idea to wear a mask. It seems to work. Her asthma has been better and the air in the basement smells better (even after the chlorine smell has left.) We also run a dehumidifier down there in the summer and it makes a very big difference. ds

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I have heard, possibly in this newsgroup, that a homeowner should be very cautious about even mentioning mold to the insurance company because they see it as a bottomless money pit and they'll cancel your insurance for sure if you are a mold whiner. To the insurance company it's like asbestos, except more expensive because EVERYbody has some amount of mold and EVERYbody is scared of it these days.

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In alt.home.repair on Sat, 19 Jul 2003 02:53:56 GMT "B"

I was never scared of it until I read this thread. I've had some.
Basement is normally dry, but it was wet for a while.
Eventually I bought 50 pounds of calcium chlorite or whatever it is. Got it from a janitorial supply house. They'll know. Only maybe 15 or 20? dollars.
Ended up having to put the bucket on each step of the stairs and then the smell went away from that step, even though my nose is 5 feet higher than the bucket. Strangest thing. Gave the remaining 40 pounds to a gas station.
used mold resistant paint additive to touch up.

Meirman
If emailing, please let me know whether or not you are posting the same letter.
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On 18 Jul 2003 01:34:37 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (X) wrote:

I had a bit of mold in my house. Part of it was in the basement - apparently the spigot outside was a bit loose and water would run down the inside wall after it had been on for a while. I fixed that problem and replaced the washers on my hoses, no more leaks.
As far as drying the basement out, if your basement is wet/damp you have 2 choices. You can either mask the problem or fix the problem. Fixing the problem might take a bit more work, but once the problem is fixed then you'll be a lot happier.
My basement gets damp at times. My house is on a hill and the rear of the basement is exposed; the front is sloped correctly so rainwater, etc doesn't get in. I reaimed the downspouts so they funneled away from the house. I also keep the basement door open once in a while to vent it. You could put in a dehumidifier to help remove some of the moisture (might be a good idea).
I doubt your insurance company is going to pay for a teardown and replace due to a wet basement. If they look at it and it appears that you were negligent, they could drop you. My neighbors had a roof leak that's gone on for years; they'd try to fix it themselves but it never worked. It was apparent there was a leak, the area around the chimney was stained for at least 2' and was very visible. Their insurance company said that the leak was a maintenance issue and wouldn't pay it.
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (X) wrote:

Funny how mold has been around longer than humans, but it's only been dangerous for the last ten years or so!

Yes, that's what gramma would have done.
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How true! That's what I say about tobacco smoke when I light up down at our kid's preschool. That's also what I say whenever I give the house a good dusting with asbestos.
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<< I was looking for articles on the net as to how I could help dry out my damp basement. This article scared the crap out of me.
http://www.foamhome.net/Print_Solution.htm
That probably was its intention. "Good news is no news," to invert the proverb. zemedelec
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