How to Fix Basement Humidity Problems

basementMoisture and excess humidity in a basement can produce a long list of problems, damaging your home and household items. Depending on how severe the problem is and what it’s cause is, one or more of these solutions might be right for you.

This Complete Home Remodeling Guide article outlines the ways to fix basement humidity problems.

Use a Dehumidifier

If the dampness in your basement is not caused by a structural problem – if it’s not leaking – then a dehumidifier might be all you need. They are commonly used in all parts of the country to deal with very high humidity.

When you shop for a dehumidifier, look for one with enough capacity for the size of room you are dealing with and larger is always better than smaller. The best residential models can remove more than 10 gallons of water per day from your home. If you have a floor drain in the basement, look for a dehumidifier with a drain outlet in addition to storage tanks. You can attach a hose to the drain outlet and run it to the floor drain so that the dehumidifier can run non-stop. If you do not have a drain you must stay on top of emptying the fluid from the dehumidifier or else the fluid will start running all over your floor, which would not help your dampness situation.

Use an Exhaust Fan

If you have a bathroom with a shower in the basement, installing an exhaust fan to get rid of humidity is essential. You should be able to vent it out a basement window or above the sill plate.


Make Sure the Dryer Vent Isn’t Blocked

There’s a lot of moisture in a wet load of clothing. If your dryer is in the basement, make sure the air and moisture is escaping to the outside. Go outside while the dryer is running and hold your hand to the vent. You should feel a steady flow of air from the dryer vent and if wet clothes are in it, you should feel moisture. If you have concerns about the vent pipe, remove it and replace it with a new one. You also have to make sure the vent pipe is clear of lint.

Fill All Cracks

If there are cracks in the wall or floor that are allowing in moisture, fill them or have them filled by a basement contractor. Epoxy and other durable materials are used that do a fantastic job stopping leaks. They are injected into the cracks. Many come with a lifetime guarantee. If you have a problem with cracks you will need to address it, as this will not go away on its own and will only get worse.

Make Sure Gutters are in Good Repair and Clean

When gutters and downspouts aren’t working properly, hundreds of gallons of water can be dumped next to your home’s foundation during a heavy rainstorm. Repair leaks to all gutters, and keep them clean. Make sure that all downspouts carry water at least 8-10 feet away from the foundation.

Have a Landscape Contractor Check your Grade

If the grade of your home is causing water to run toward it rather than away from it, then you’ll need to have those areas of your yard re-graded to carry water away from your foundation.

Waterproof the Foundation

This is an expensive fix, but may be necessary for old foundations that continue to allow moisture to pass through. If you expose the foundation, make sure you’ve got pea stone and drain tile around it to carry away excess water.

These are the most common ways to fix basement humidity problems. If you have any of this issues a good basement contractor will be able to locate the cause of excess humidity in your basement and handle the solutions for you.


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