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Same Problem, wet test confirms NO ground moisture. source systemic to house design.

Posted by john c on July 8th, 2000 01:38 PM
In reply to Mold & Mildew in Corners at ceiling by David on May 4th, 1998 11:45 AM [Go to top of thread]

Looks as though this problem has gone by the wayside for David, given the date of the questions and answers. However, his problem is ours and our problem is current!

We have rampant mold and mildew {some old and dried out (stained), some appears to be fairly new}. It is present on the underside of the joists and floor boards in the crawl space under the house. However, based on our non professional inspection it is not on the ground below these areas.

Per the guidance above by Jayj, we have done the the black plastic test and moisture is NOT coming from the ground, as best we can test for, even in a post rain time. It continues to looks dry and dusty (even post rain). However, several years ago, we had two pipe breaks in the winter under the house, two winters in a row. No water damage to the house. I repaired a pipe break myself (and had one repaired professionally - the second one). I redid the piping heaters and insulation and we no longer have a risk of pipe breaks caused by freezing. the house is an old (1964) mobile converted to real and with additions added on, but not according to any recent code work.

Moreover, we heat primarily with wood, with electrical back up. Married two years ago, and the last two winters my wife has kept a pot of water on the stove to compensate for the dryness in the house. Hence, in the house and around windows (mostly single pane), we have had lots of moisture buildup

Although our little cabin looks nice and cute, the quality of workmanship is superficial. Specifically, there are no 18" deep (code in this neck of the Northwest) foundation walls, just RR ties to ground level (some brick walls to ground level, nothing below ground anywhere). I think this was okay for a mobile, but not sure what code requirements were when the additions were put on and whether the work was within that current code or not.

Our insurance specifically "does not insure loss caused by or consisting of smog, rust, or other corrosion, mold, wet or dry rot". My wife is the proverbial "canary in the gold mine" and has emerged with some very debilitating chronic symptoms that we are examining whether they are tied to mildew exposure.

Hence, we have to do something, but are not sure what.

My guess is that you will tell us to rip out the foundation and redo it to code and then to conduct remedial repairs to problem areas. How will I know I got rid of all issues?

What about sustained exposure to the environment by furniture? Is it wasted forever or are there ways to ensure the cleanup is 99% and is that good enough?

Your thoughts please.

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