Mold/water foundation problem

Old 11-04-13, 05:09 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: United States
Posts: 1
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Mold/water foundation problem

My husband and I bought a split level home 16 months ago. It passed inspection/appraisal just fine. A few months ago we started noticing a smell of mildew in the lower level, and we've finally just had the time to start pulling down drywall to see what's going on.

Our foundation is, apparently, made of plywood. The plywood is SOAKING wet in some places and peppered with mold in others. The drywall itself was fine, but the insulation was wet, and there is standing water at the bottom, where the cement flooring meets the foundation. Though we started in the one room where we'd noticed the smell, we've since checked the other walls and it appears to circle the entire house.

I can't even imagine the massive cost of trying to fix this. Or is it even fixable? I am absolutely heartbroken at this development. I'm not even sure what my question is. I don't know what my first step should be. What would you do?
Old 11-04-13, 05:19 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA - N.E.Tn
Posts: 45,422
Received 786 Upvotes on 689 Posts
Welcome to the forums!

I've heard of a few instances where there were houses built with wood foundations but it's not commonplace. Plywood by itself won't make a foundation, it would have to be fastened to something. Have you inspected/evaluated the foundation on the exterior side? It would be nice to know what is on the other side of the plywood, hopefully concrete or some type of masonry and not more wood.
Pics might be helpful -
Old 11-04-13, 01:58 PM
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: NC, USA
Posts: 26,830
Received 1,957 Upvotes on 1,753 Posts
I had read of pressure treated wood foundations but most of the rumors I heard were they had a shorter than expected life because of problems like you mentioned. As you surmise I don't think there is a cheap or easy fix. I would start doing some serious research into the matter. There may be some waterproofing that can be done outside to keep the water away from the foundation. Unfortunately even that involves digging to expose the foundation, sealing it and installing a good drainage system. Since the wood is treated I don't expect you have a structural problem with rot but the moisture can certainly cause a mold and mildew problem.

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Your question will be posted in: