Dry basement or crawlspace after a Boulder flood? Not in my neighborhood!
If you are one of those people that had had no ill effects from the rains, flooding and ensuing ground saturation after the Boulder floods in September 2013, you are in a small group and I was VERY happy for you and your dry basement. 🙂
For the rest of us, the following weekends probably involved lots of effort to dry the basement ASAP!
1. Multiple trips Home Depot, Lowes, McGuckins, Costco, Target and anywhere else you can think of that might have still had pumps, fans, rubber boot and my personal favorite…
Suit kits to cover yourself up with while crawling in the space under your house.
The dry basement or crawlspace… That would be the area that was home to all the crap you wish you had cleared out BEFORE it rained hard and of course. But now, it’s where the spiders are taking shelter from the weather! It may not be a dry basement (or crawlspace) but it’s certainly drier than outside.
I know, I know, the suit won’t keep you dry. But there are worse things than being wet. For $10 I was happy to know that no little crawly thing could get into my hair, collar, shoes or sleeves and the comfortable clothes I was wearing underneath would not be forever ruined.
2. Get kitted up!
3. With lamps, extension cords, fans, garbage bags and a plan, we jumped into the cool, damp darkness and got to work.
4. First get lights going. This is the time you realize you are not alone!
5. Hook up fans and get the air moving. It doesn’t take long before the lack of air and earthy smell have you breathing more labored. For me, the air was irritating my eyes too.
6. Start removing things that have been stored down here. Mine was a combo of snow tires, some file boxes (mostly dry due to bagging the boxes) old doors, screens and the like. Not too much that was damaged actually, but it needed to come out to facilitate the drying. Of course I was pulling up stuff from owners past too.
The worse part was the removal of old corrugated cardboard and carpet that had clearly been down here for decades. It was more than damp and really quite icky.
(Did I scream like a little girl when a large shiny black spider appeared out of nowhere and scared the life out me? Heck yes! And I have the slightly sore throat to remember that by!)
Working backwards, we pulled up the cardboard and carpet as we exited, so that having to crawl in the wet dirt was mostly avoided. After two and a half hours, the crawl space was empty and the sound of whirring fans filled the air.
The suits and masks came off and quickly found themselves in the garbage bin.
Ok, so my house smelled musty afterwards, but that was a good sign! The air was moving out and up. Four days later when the rain really had stopped and our temperatures were back in the 80’s like we expected them to be, the damp began to dissipate quickly and I was glad that after 50 years, there was a space under my house that is free of old carpet and stuff that other people have left.
Dry basement? … Soon!