I had a 10 year old gas water heater located in the garage which sprung
a small leak. I don't know when it leaked exactly but what happened was
that I suddenly noticed the leak because it was large enough to actual
hear the water leak flowing. So once I realized what was happening I
replaced it yesterday. It might have been leaking for a while.
However, the gas heater was sitting on a stand in the corner of the
garage. The stand itself was enclosed with drywall, except for a small
door underneath the stand which leads to a hollow cavity between the
garage drywall and the inside house drywall and is filled with
insulation. On the other side of the insulation is the drywall which is
on the inside of the house itself. The floor is quite wet and part of
the insulation is soaked. The whole cavity seems pretty damp and wet.
|----- R13 Wall Insulation
Inside of House V
-------------- | I
R13 Insulation | | Inside of House
---------| | |
| Stand| |
|-----| | <-- small door underneath stand
leading to "cavity"
Can I just let it dry out in time or should I rip up the drywall and
insulation? I hate to do that cause that's gonna be a lot of work
and/or money to rebuild that whole corner section and I have no skills
or experience with that kind of work.] However, an entire drywall
cavity damp with water letting it dry naturally in time might lead to
What's the advice on what to do?
wet and part of the insulation is soaked. The whole cavity seems pretty damp and
wet.> Can I just let it dry out in time or should I rip up the drywall and
My avice it to remove all water damaged material otherwise you run the
risk of mold problems that you don't want and cant' risk. You
absolutley want to remove it and open up every damaged cavity to the
studs. then you get one or more big fans pointed in the direction of
the wall cavities for a day or two to get it as dry as possible before
reassembly You defintilely want to replace the water heater or at
least have somone look at it.
The demolition part requires little skill other than the motivation and
desire to perform a nasty task. Wear long sleeves and pants. cover
your head and eyes. A dust mask is recommended. You might have to hire
some help to put the wall back together but it's not so hard, i assure
you, to do a basic repair with new isulation and drywall. there are
many resources for those topics.
On 2 Aug 2006 14:04:58 -0700, ex firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
I only have experience with one house, but even though Baltimore
Maryland is usually rather humid, my house seems to be pretty dry.
I've been in your shoes with leaks, and everything always dried up.
On two occasions in the basement, I got mold on one part of drywall,
or another, and both times the mold stopped growing when the place
dried (One was wet for a long time because the cement trough at the
bottom of the downspout outside had tipped backwards, and it kept the
lowest foot of drywall wet. There I kept applying bleach, thinking it
would kill the mold and turn the wall white again. I guess it killed
the mold, if it wasn't dead already, but I had to paint to get it
white again. In the other location, it was hard to paint and I didn't
bother to apply bleach, and it's still black on parts of the drywall
below the work bench, but it doesn't grow.
I don't know if the mold would have bothered anyone when it was still
growing, but it didsn't bother me.
I've gotten the first floor carpets very wet and they never molded.
And like I say, there was only mold 2 times out of more than 10 times
that I've had moderate to big floods. (almost always for different
reasons each time.)
Although fiberglass won't be a good insulator as long as it is wet, I
don't think mold will grow on it either. I am a gambler, so I guess I
would try to spray some full strength** bleach on the parts of drywall
that are wet. Maybe I'd remove the fiberglass to do this, if it
wasn't hard to do, and let the fiberglass dry separately, before I
stuffed it back in. If I did remove it, I'd leave it out for a couple
weeks or more to let the sheetrock dry.
**On another occasion, I diluted the bleach according to instructions
and used it to kill moss on the shady parts of my fence. It didn't
work so I did it again with full strength and that worked. It may
have bleached the wood itself, but that's ok.
Personally, I think the more things children are exposed to when they
are young, the less things will bother them when they are older. Kids
who don't play outside, and who never cut themselves, when they are
kids face some of the biggest risks. Of course there are always a few
who react very badly even as kids, so people look at the immediate
risks, even if they are low, and have a hard time planning for a
lifetime of risks, especially when it's not fully clear how much cuts
and infections and playing in the dirt and facing mold spores will
make them more resistant when older.
I'll admit that if I weren't lethargic, I would have done more in a
couple of these cases, but even if I had loads of energy, not in the
cases where it was going to be a lot of work. I've never paid any
price for not doing more to dry things out. Maybe the atmosphere in
that part of your house is different from mine, though in none of
these cases did I have the air conditioner on.
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