I'm extremely glad that I decided to rewire my basement and install
insulation and redrywall. It allowed me to find all the nasty traps hidden
in the basement and it explains a lot of the stuff I see.
My problem is that I found one corner with water damage, not horrid damage,
just a corner where the plywood is soft and it also happens to coincide to
the place where my gutters aren't working. I also found an insect
infestation - nothing horrid, but I wonder if I found a nest of cockroaches
or simply a bunch of beetles. I suspect beetles, as I don't see the smaller
casings that a cockroach would leave. I also found a bunch of ants hiding
out with the beetles and the most vile looking spider I ever saw. They all
took a trip down the shop vac tube before I got a chance to take a photo of
them - so I wasted that opportunity to ID them.
But here is what I'm faced with
That's the corner is question. The chalk line denotes the edge of the soft
plywood. Should I fill the gaps in the corner with caulking, should I apply
an insect treatment first?
I'm not sure if that's insect damage or a funky 2x4 - like where the bark
I'm assuming that's where the insects are coming in from. I presume the
window was installed after the framing was put in, that might explain why
the foundation is like it is only under the window.
The plywood is pulling away from the studs, is that a problem or normal for
a house. Would filling the gap with caulking prevent further infestations?
First you fix the gutter, then you let everything dry out. Make sure
you fix the cause before working on the result. You can work on the insects
while doing that. You also need to replace the plywood. Doing it right now
will make it a lot cheaper in the long run.
Insects will always find a way in. Eliminate what they want moisture
food etc, and you will eliminate the insects.
I knew you were gonna say that. Damn, why does the worst one always have to
be on the most out of reach gutter? Probably because the other owner didn't
want to fix it either I assume?
How would you replace the plywood - remove the siding on that particular
location? That'll be a fun job in the pouring rain.
So that is an exterior wall. I don't know why I was thinking it was a
I would be tempered to let it dry out, use some bleach on it and make
sure there is no mold there. If it is reasonable stable at that time, I
might just close it up as is. However when it comes time to re-side or do
any other repairs there, I would do the replacement. Likely I would try to
get it done with the next painting.
It is a basement, well... an above ground basement. The basement was added
on after construction, as the house sits half-way over a hillside. The
owner simply dug the hillside out square and poured a foundation for the
basement. So 2/3rds of the basement is above the ground. The corner in
question is about 18" off the soil, but it's also exactly where the
The idea is to put in insulation then drywall it back up, I just don't want
to do that if there is a danger the buggies will get back in and nest in the
Hmmm, I might still have to take the siding off, so that I can seal that
window up properly.
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