Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Unfortunate event #2

This is not turning out to be a great week. On Monday night, I was at home, watching TV. I decided I'd better head downstairs to check the fire, and I was greeted with another flooded basement. I had been downstairs a couple of hours previously and it was dry, so needless to say, I was pretty surprised to see the amount of water.

My first thought was that the same problem I had before was back again. I checked the door and it was not flowing in through the area where I previously had a problem. There are 3 holes in my cement floor for pipes, two are in the future bathroom and one is by the sewer pipe in the storage room. What happened was that the water table reached so high a level that it came up through the holes and overflowed. The all rain-no snow winter we've been having has meant an excess of water hanging around, and Monday's rain was the straw that broke the camel's back.

The ditch that runs through the back of my property was also water-logged and stangnant, when it is normally supposed to be flowing. This wasn't helping the water level either. I called the City to come and look at the ditch, since it was them who required it to be installed. While they couldn't dispute that it was having an effect on the water table, the ditch itself wasn't directly causing the flooding in the basement. They were supposed to go back and look at the ditch yesterday and possibly clean it out a bit to get things flowing again. I haven't heard back from them, but will have to keep an eye out and see if the ditch gets better.

I called my Dad, who is in Boston with my brother at the diabetic clinic this week. I explained how the water was coming in. Supposedly double drain tile was installed when my house was built, but as anyone who watches Holmes on Homes knows, who knows if that is actually true. Dad recommended a sump pump as my cheapest, easiest, and likely best solution to prevent that from happening again. Once he's back I will have to get his help to get one installed.

I rushed around and got everything up onto plastic as best I could that night, but I now have some empty, soggy cardboard boxes hanging around. I plan on investing in some big plastic Rubbermaid totes to replace the large cardboard boxes I was using. I was also lucky that John had installed a door for me over the holidays. It had been lying on its side on the floor, and may have been damaged if it hadn't gotten installed.

I'm worried about finishing my basement though. Thankfully I had not invested in refinishing any more of the basement yet. I would like to get my bathroom finished next, and that would have a ceramic tile floor, so not a big deal if I had to deal with water again. The hard part is thinking about finishing the rest of the flooring. I had no plans anytime soon to put anything down in there, but it makes me wonder if I ever want take that risk. Realistically, after the sump pump is installed and working, the chances of my having another flood are reduced. There is always a risk of a crack in the cement, but you never know if that will occur in any home.

So it's been a stressful week for me. I've had no success changing a circuit board on my mother's hard drive, so all of her data is lost (unless I want to pay $125 on eBay for the same model and hope it works). Now I have a basement that is again recovering from a flood. Someone reminded me yesterday that bad things happen in threes. I hope that third thing is the work-related problem I'm having today and not anything else personal. I've taken enough hits right now, thanks!

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