Monday, March 18, 2013

When The Going Gets Tough...

The DIYers get going...

Last week when posting about our basement TV room, I also mentioned in passing that there was an extra guest bedroom at the base of the stairs. See that doorway over there?

 This guest room started as an easy remodel project- a little paint, some new carpet and that was about all that we imagined the room would need to get it up to speed.  In preparation for new carpet though, I decided that I should repaint the baseboards.  Seems innocent enough, right?  I pealed back the carpet from the baseboard (so that I could paint the entire baseboard and not just the portion peaking out over the carpet) only to discover the one thing that you least want to find in your basement- MOLD.

So what did I do?  Well, I ran out of there and quickly shut the door behind me never to go into the room again.  Just kidding.

Actually, I yelled for Eric (I think blood curdling scream may be a better term for it).  The last thing that I wanted was mold spores sprayed all around our house.  We had to act fast.  Luckily, we had lots of plastic sheeting in our garage from a different project and we immediately grabbed it and went to work.  We quickly sheeted off all vents, doors and even the window to keep that mold contained.

Two days later we had a plan of attack and looked it like this:
That is me, Melissa, in case you couldn't tell.
We decided that this was a project we could take on ourselves (although I do not recommend this for everyone).  Our plan was this:

1.  Go into the room with all the supplies we needed (once inside we were not coming out until the room was clear).
2. Remove all parts of the room affected by mold very gently- do not stir up spores
3.  Bag all items affected by the mold while inside the room
4.  Find the cause of the mold- where did that water come from?

We were going into battle (but still having fun along the way).

We started in the portion of the room where I initially found the mold and got to work ripping it apart.

All drywall, insulation, carpet and pad, and studs were removed until we had created and twelve inch perimeter of unaffected space around the molded area.  It ended up looking like this:

Yikes.  Stud removal came just after this (I should also mention that the black stuff on the floor is not mold, it was some of the black carpet pad which was glued down to the concrete).  You can see though that we found the source of the mold .  Everything was dry back there, but water had definitely been seeping in at some point.

Side note- it is at this point that I believe that I began cursing the previous owners.  We found evidence that this issue had been discovered previously and covered up...

It was not pretty.  We then doused everything in bleach, scrubbed like crazy and when we were confident that all mold was bagged, we bagged our protective gear and exited the room.  I believe that it took about three hours and we were very glad to be done with stage one.

Stage two involved finding this same "hole" in the wall on the outside perimeter.  This meant we had a lot of digging ahead of us.  The good news is that Eric is a fantastic digger and he actually enjoys doing it (no one can get out a tree root ball like Eric)!  The deal was that if Eric digs the hole, I would back fill it.  In no time, we had this pile of dirt:

In the next post, we will get into patching this exterior hole, re-routing the gutter drains and finally, the fun part of finishing the mold free room.

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