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what's going on in our basement

Posted by home1940s (My Page) on
Fri, Jun 27, 14 at 14:09

We are first time homeowners and live in a semi detached house built in 1947. The previous owners finished the basement (playroom and bathroom) except for a small room which is used for storage. It also houses our hot water heater and furnace.
The floor in the storage room in the basement (which was painted grey by the previous owners) is cracking and bubbling up. I have included pictures.
There seems to be a lot of powder all around the area when we prod it. The white section of the spot is hard but with that powder substance over it. The dark spots are wet. When the paint around the opening is prodded the paint chips off and it seems to be wet underneath.
Could it be pyrite? Or is the house too old for pyrite to have been used in it's construction?
What seems to the be problem? Is water seeping into the house from the ground?
How can this be fixed?
Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thank-you

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: what's going on in our basement

Is water seeping into the house from the ground? .... YES

How can this be fixed? .... call a contractor who specializes in wet basement fixing. You may have a broken pipe in the slab, your neighbors may have a broken pipe, it may be from groundwater or bad grading.

RE: what's going on in our basement

Thanks lazygarden. We will make some calls on Monday.

RE: what's going on in our basement

I will bet that it is groundwater penetrating the slab/wall joint. As well with a slab that old it could easily be a crack in the slab. I had this problem in my last home. After periods of heavy rain the water would well up through a crack in the floor and at the base of the wall. I never eliminated it completely. I did dig up the side of the house and install a drain below the level of the slab/footing edge. That handled 90% of it, but in really wet times, it would show on the floor. I had a lot of grade in my lot so I could do the drain. Your site may not allow it. I would remove all the paint and whatever floor covering you have that is showing this rot. by doing so you at least know when you are getting water and can determine where it is coming from. As well, it can then evaporate or be vacuumed up rather than turning to mold. A sump pump may be in your immediate future.

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