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Quebec inventor with ties to P.E.I. has new product to reduce basement flood damage

Cody MacCormack, left, stands with Jim MacDonald and his new product, the Teksill rail, which is designed to reduce or eliminate damage from basement flooding. MacCormack will be the first Islander to install Teksill when he renovates his mother’s basement this winter.
Cody MacCormack, left, stands with Jim MacDonald and his new product, the Teksill rail, which is designed to reduce or eliminate damage from basement flooding. MacCormack will be the first Islander to install Teksill when he renovates his mother’s basement this winter. - Contributed

This winter, Cody MacCormack is renovating his mother’s basement.

With the help of a new product from a Quebec inventor with his own ties to P.E.I., MacCormack hopes it will be flood resistant.

MacCormack hadn’t put any thought into flood mitigation until he saw the inventor’s familiar face in a YouTube video, he said.

“I hope I never have to put it to the test, but, if I do, I’m glad it’ll be there.”

The face was familiar because MacCormack has been taking care of Jim MacDonald’s Island property for almost 20 years.

The property once belonged to MacDonald’s Souris-born father, who moved away after university, said MacDonald.

“Luckily, every summer since we were born, he brought us out here.”

He has been coming back ever since.

These ridges along the bottom of the Teksill rail allow air to circulate. In laboratory testing, a Teksill basement dried without intervention in about 20 hours, while the non-Teksill basement took four to nine days. - Contributed
These ridges along the bottom of the Teksill rail allow air to circulate. In laboratory testing, a Teksill basement dried without intervention in about 20 hours, while the non-Teksill basement took four to nine days. - Contributed

Tried and tested

MacDonald has seen plenty of flood damage in his 38 years as a contractor. Since 2012, he has been perfecting his idea to prevent it.

In December, he officially launched the basement-saving product in Quebec stores.

Teksill is recyclable, made of recycled plastic and is fabricated in Canada. It attaches to the bottom 2x4 of a framed wall, raising the wood ¾ of an inch off the foundation. In doing so, its ridges provide space for air circulation to dry the water without direct intervention and without mould growth, said MacDonald.

“If you have this installed under your walls and you have a flood, even if you don’t clean up the water or you don’t put out the fans, the mould has an extremely minimal chance of growing.”

In tests conducted at CRIQ, an industrial research centre in Quebec, an average-sized basement — 900-square feet — with Teksill installed could withstand 2,000 litres of water without damage and took about 20 hours to dry.

The test basement without Teksill took between four and nine days.

Of the more than 60 homes in Quebec with Teksill installed since 2012, 10 have reflooded and none had damage to the walls. The only lasting damage was one home needing to replace hardwood flooring.

The recyclable Teksill is made from recycled plastic and easily fits along the bottom 2x4 of a wall before installation to raise the wall ¾ of an inch off the foundation. It provides room for air circulation to dry the water, reducing damage and mould growth. - Contributed
The recyclable Teksill is made from recycled plastic and easily fits along the bottom 2x4 of a wall before installation to raise the wall ¾ of an inch off the foundation. It provides room for air circulation to dry the water, reducing damage and mould growth. - Contributed

Moving out

MacDonald is still in the process of getting the product in stores outside his home province. For now, the product is available for order online across Canada.

This will be the first time it’s installed in a home in P.E.I., which suits MacDonald just fine.

“They’re great people on the Island and it’s such a pleasure to come over here.”

It’s a thought that excites MacCormack, too, he said.

“I think it’s going to be cool to be the first person to have it on the Island.”

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1 being least likely, and 10 being most likely

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