When summer high temperatures reach the mid 90s in the northeast, conversations usually turn to just how uncomfortable it is outside because of the humidity. But did you know that humidity inside your house is more than simply uncomfortable – it’s dangerous, too. It can wreak havoc on your health. While the rest of your home feels “stuffy,” the dark, below-level basement turns into a breeding ground for allergens. Basement humidity enables mold, mildew, and dust mites to thrive because it all needs water to grow and survive. All are factors in allergy and asthma attacks.
Basement humidity causes other problems as well. Think: warping wood and musty air. So what can a homeowner do? Here are some FAQs and solutions:
What causes extensive basement humidity?
Lack of ventilation. Without proper ventilation, your basement will lock in moisture. This is especially a problem if you have a washer, dryer or other appliances inside your basement. Hanging laundry to dry in the basement just adds moisture. Many homes with a finished basement have the luxury of an additional bathroom. Hot showers only add to the humidity.
Wall and floor cracks. When the ground around your home becomes too saturated, the excess water will start to make its way into your home through the walls. If you have water beneath your foundation, it will come in through floor cracks.
Climate. Outside air has access to your basement through the rest of your home. If you live in a hot and humid climate, you are more at risk.
How can I determine if my basement is too humid?
Measure it. A hygrometer measure humidity much like a thermometer measures temperature. You can buy one at a hardware or home improvement store. These are also readily available online.
Take a look around. Even with a hygrometer, you can tell if your basement is too humid by condensation. If you see it on any wall or surface, you have a problem.
How do I control basement humidity?
Ventilate. As we said before, lack of ventilation is the number one cause of basement humidity and all the problems associated with it. Getting the air moving will help reduce humidity and that general “stuffy” feeling in the air. You can open windows and use floor fans. Exhaust fans are essential in basement bathrooms. The key is to keep the air flowing.
Dehumidify. While ventilating helps, you really need a dehumidifier to rid your home of basement humidity. While a simple dehumidifier can help, installing a dehumidification system is the best way to reduce your home’s humidity.
How do I install a dehumidification system?
Hire a professional. At Affordable Waterproofing, we specialize in Humidex systems. This is an advanced solution that both dehumidifies and ventilates not just your basement but your entire home.
Humidex systems allow air to circulate throughout your whole house. It also lowers moisture and removes contaminants from the air. A Humidex system is a comprehensive solution that provides fresh and dry air for your entire home and rids your house of basement humidity.
Interested in our dehumidification services? Contact us today.