JWG (jwg) wrote,

Snow .... rain ..... floods ....

Last night when I went up to bed and I let the hot water run a while (not into the bed) to get hot but it stayed cold. So I trudged down to the basement to look at the hot water heater. As my foot hit the floor there was a splash (my slipper has finally dried). There was about 3 inches of water in the basement. I shut off power to the hot water heater. It is gas, but it needs power for the ignition and for the fan system since it is super efficient and it vents into a plastic pipe instead of our now non-existent chimney.

Fortunately there wasn't enough water to mess up the heat.

My basement leaks a bit and I've occasionally found 1/2 of water in the lower sections but never anything like this. I assume it was caused by the 2 ft of snow from last week that had been banked up even higher in spots from shoveling and drifting and then the huge amount of rain which melted much, but not all the snow leaving big pockets next to the house which filled up with water and seeped through my basement sievewalls. I'd meant to check the basement several days ago but didn't.

This morning I went to the hardware store and got a 1/4 hp pump and 50 ft of garden hose. The hardware store had lots of pumps but only one 50 ft hose since it isn't exactly gardening season here.

Plunking the pump into the water and snaking the hose up to the first floor bathroom drain, I plugged it in. At ~800 gallons an hour about 2 1/2 hours later the what I thought was the lowest point was down to ~ 1/2 inch of water and most of the floor was just wet. Old newspaper makes an OK sponge and we used it to sop up the remaining water and filled a contractor bag with wet newspaper. I also used a big flat plastic dustpan to scoop up remaining water into a bucket (about 10 loads full) and got the lowest spot to only have a bit of water.

I turned power onto the hotwater heater and it lit and then blew out, it did this twice and then settled in to work properly. I could see that the water had been just up to the igniter.

We celebrated with nice naps.

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