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Published March 25, 2009, 12:00 AM

Homeowners deal with flooded basements

Lee Schauer lost about 1,000 vinyl records this week after a half-inch of water seeped into his basement.

Lee Schauer lost about 1,000 vinyl records this week after a half-inch of water seeped into his basement.

“They’re kind of irreplaceable,” said Schauer, who lives just west of the Red River along Fourth Street South in Fargo.

Schauer recruited friends on Tuesday to help move his family’s belongings to higher ground and to try to dry out the basement

and wet carpet.

While thousands of volunteers are helping sandbag and build dikes, many homeowners are dealing with floods of their own at home.

For Schauer, saving his records that weren’t damaged and his antique stereos were his top priority.

For his wife, Billi, saving her wedding dress and their wedding photos was more important.

They moved their belongings to a high shelf in his garage and took some to store elsewhere.

Earlier this week, Lee Schauer stayed home from work to help

his neighbor who had a wet basement.

It wasn’t until about 11 p.m. Monday that he realized he had a problem of his own.

“I thought I had it beat,” said Schauer, who has lived in his house since 1990.

City public works departments are advising residents to make sure their sump pumps are discharging water outside and not into the sewer system.

Sump pump water pumped into the sewer system may cause sewage to back up into homes.

Residents also should be sure to extend sump pump hoses about 20 feet away from buildings, said Ken Hellevang, an engineer with North Dakota State University Extension Service.

If carpet does get wet, it’s important to get it completely dry to prevent mold, Hellevang said.

West Fargo Public Works gave these tips to prevent water from entering basements:

  • Inspect down spouts and make sure they’re angled to move water away from your house.

Shovel snow away from the foundation of your house.


Readers can reach Forum reporter Amy Dalrymple at (701) 241-5590

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