6/24/2013: Basement humidity

Without humidity, your basement would be the coolest, most comfortable room in the house.  Instead, it feels like South Carolina down there.  You just want to get your laundry and get out.

Why do basements get so humid?  Pretty simple, you guys: when outdoor air is warmer than inside air, humidity increases.  Plus, we have high water table which means the soil surrounding the basement is always wet.  Look gang – I don’t wear a lab coat, don’t have a poster of the periodic elements in my room.  But I know humidity is a problem for basements.

When basement humidity rises above 80%, mold and mildew grow faster.  Dustmites, too.    An ideal humidity level for the basement during the summer is 50% or less.  Best way to manage humidity is with a dehumidifier.  God, that was anti-climactic.

Dehumidifiers can run you anywhere from 150-1,000 USDs.  My advice is get one with a large tank that’s capable of holding 50+ pints (you don’t want to be constantly emptying the tank.)  You can also drain the dehumidifier directly into a sump pit or french drain.  Spend a few extra USDs and get a quieter model — ideally less than 70dBs (loud as a vacuum cleaner).

Basement after
Protect the basement!

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