Saltwater Flooded Basement: Good or Bad?

Posted by Roger Baronat, August 28, 2011, 8:47 pm

Saltwater Surged Basement

Just got back from the evacuation to find this in my basement. First thing that comes to mind is depth level.

How many feet of saltwater are in this basement? Four feet. That was easy. Just look carefully at the picture.

Here’s a more difficult question. If this basement is pumped out and dried, will the remaining salt coating (saltwater minus the water) prevent mold from developing in whatever got wet in this basement?

Why do I ask this question, you ask? Well, there’s four feet of corrosive saltwater in my basement, that’s why!

Other assorted questions come to mind as well. For instance, will the washing machine that is floating somewhat at a tilted angle in the background, work after it’s been dried out? Or will the saltwater rust out its innards instead? Or will the gas-powered hotwater heater that’s sitting on the floor under four feet of saltwater to the right of the wire mesh screen need replacing or will it dry out after the water is gone and work normally? Hmmm, there’s a puzzler.

How about, why didn’t the sump pump work? Actually, that’s another easy one. When there’s nowhere for the pumped out water to go except back into the same storm surge that brought it in, the sump pump is not going to work at its optimum level of efficiency!

[ Photo: Courtesy of Hurricane Irene, an ocean water storm surge, and my pocket camera. ]

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