To all concerned,
Got the low down on the situation. The problem was an improper heating and hot water system crawl space installation. Yes, there was a flood involved (due to Gustave) - 10 inches of rain in less than three days. Yes, there was a sum pump failure. However, the aforementioned units were both installed - below grade! Yes, that is right, below crawl space grade. A trench was dug out (called a “pit” by my friend). This is a text book example of why if a system is to be located in a crawl space in must be suspended above grade. I say “if a system is to be installed in a crawl space” because there is a basement also.
Anyway, the neighbor - a professional from what I understand, took on himself to inspect the ducts given the gravity of the situation. Finding: mold, visible and abundant. Obviously not caused by this one time event (they are in the home 2 years).
So with the relocating of the system including duct work - all new, the price is 15k, shopped by my friend also and not found to be high in comparison.
There are cleaning crews coming in to clean and sanitize the house and crawl. Then the crawl will be encapsulated with 6mil plastic.
Thanks for all the willingness. This is a situation close to my heart.
If you need anything in Staten Island, NY or North or Central NJ I am here.