Basements are the #1 source of humidity in most homes. The humidity level in a basement is likely to be around 55% (average across the country), while the recommended level is 30%. What does this mean for you? It means more dust, mold, and bad odors. However, there are some simple solutions to help reduce the moisture level in your basement. That’s why you will hear most people installing a dehumidifier in their basement. So, what benefits can you enjoy when you install a basement dehumidifier?
1. Prevention of Water Damage by Keeping the Basement Dry
One of the main benefits of installing a basement dehumidifier is that it helps prevent water damage. This includes not only surface damage but also structural damage. Trust me; you don’t want to find out your foundation has started to crack because you were too late on taking corrective measures on your humidity levels in your basement.
The basements are susceptible to high humidity levels because of their proximity to the soil and groundwater, and moisture can find its way to the rest of your home, causing damages. Installing a basement dehumidifier can ensure you control the humidity source from the root and prevent any water from causing problems. And the good news is, preventing water damage will save you money and heartache in the long run.
If you use the basement for storage, you probably have a stockpile of old clothes, books, toys, and other items that have started to absorb the moisture in your basement. If this is the case with you, it’s important to remember that mold thrives on moisture, so the dehumidifier will be your best friend if you want to prevent mold growth. Humidity removal can also prevent rust and corrosion of any bare metals in the basement and your home in general.
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2. Promotes a Healthier Living Environment
Reduces Dust and Odors You probably already know that high humidity levels in a basement lead to dust mites and mold growth, which can be hazardous for anyone with allergies or asthma. What’s more, the room might start to develop a musty smell when the mold is growing, making the environment less hospitable.
The good news is when you install a dehumidifier in your basement, the air quality will improve dramatically. The appliance will prevent the problem from expanding while removing the odor, dust, and other contaminants using its air filter.
Remember, dust mites in your house are among the most common allergens that trigger allergies and asthma attacks, so it’s important to keep their levels low by controlling humidity in your basement. In the end, you can enjoy a space a healthier living environment in general.
3. Positive Effects on Your Home’s Furnishing and Infrastructure
Improves the Appearance of The Basement Installing a dehumidifier in your basement can make it look cleaner, fresher, and more inviting to guests that come over. This is because mold loves darkness and moisture; therefore, basements are always susceptible to certain types of mold growth, which can turn it into a dirty and dark place.
Worse, if the mold spreads to other parts of your home, you might have to look for a professional to handle it for you. On the other hand, installing a dehumidifier in your basement should negatively affect your furnishing or infrastructure. It can maximize your investment if you add a dehumidifier in your basement.
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4. Reduced Energy Costs
By installing a basement dehumidifier, you will be reducing the workload of your AC, and in return, this will work in your favor. Dehumidifiers don’t consume a lot energy as air conditioners do. And installing it in your basement can help remove the excess humidity that might be making the AC work hard trying to cool down wet air while stripping it of the excess moisture.
How Can You Tell When You Need a Basement Dehumidifier?
The truth is, basements are known to be the #1 source of high humidity levels in many homes across the country. For most homeowners living in wet areas, a basement dehumidifier is necessary. However, for some, they wait until the signs start to manifest before investing in the appliance. If you’re one of them, you will want to know how to tell it’s time to get a basement dehumidifier before it is too late.
Signs you need a basement dehumidifier include:
1. Air Feels Damp
If you enter the basement, turn on the lights, and feel a dampness in the air, you need to invest in a dehumidifier. Even if you have other high humidity spaces, the basement is particularly prone to mold growth because of its proximity to the soil and groundwater.
2. Damp and Muddy Flooring
If you start to notice water spots on the flooring, it means your humidity levels are too high. While this can happen during rainy seasons or after heavy showers, it’s time to get a basement dehumidifier installed if these spots have been around for a while.
3. Condensation Formations
When there is excessive dampness in the air, condensation forms on surfaces where the wet air has accumulated; these formations include walls and windowsills because they are closer to the moist area and include other items that absorb moisture present in the environment such as furniture and electrical appliances.
4. White or Greenish Patches On Wood
You might not be able to see this with your naked eye without proper lighting, but you will see those “white patches” on wood surfaces such as the walls and beams of your basement. If it worries you, inspect the spots with a magnifying glass and check if they’re mold or just dirt.
5. Musty Odors
If any mold is growing in your basement, then you’ll start to notice a musty scent that’s very similar to the smell of soil after rainfalls. This happens because fungi and microorganisms present in wet spaces such as basements contribute to bad air quality. Therefore, it pays to invest in a dehumidifier before it worsens over time.
6. Mildew and Mold Growth
This might be hard to spot if you’re not a handy homeowner, but you’ll notice damp and dark-colored patches on surfaces such as wood and drywall. You can also see that these areas start growing with mildew and mold caused by the excessive presence of humidity in your home.
7. Humidistat Reads Anything Above 50%
Install a humidity meter in your basement to know if the room is too humid. If it reads anything above 50%, you’ll need to install a dehumidifier in the area. The ideal humidity level for a basement ranges from 30% to 50%; anything above this is dangerous.
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Can a dehumidifier in the basement help upstairs?
Yes, a basement dehumidifier reduces the humidity level in the entire house. It does so by drawing in humid air from other spaces and releasing fresh, less-humid air to the vents. Read more on this here.
How much power is needed for a basement dehumidifier?
Standard models consume around 300 to 600 watts of electric power, while high-capacity models need anything between 800 and 2000 watts. Be sure to match your dehumidifier’s wattage with the circuit breaker in your home, so you don’t trip it while using. Read more on this here.
What size dehumidifier do I need for the basement?
There is no standard size for basement dehumidifiers. However, you may determine the dehumidifier’s size based on your basement’s dimensions. If your space is 500 square feet and moderately damp, go with a 10-pint dehumidifier. For an additional 500 square feet, add four pints to the machine’s capacity. Read more on this here.