Do Finished Basements Need a Dehumidifier?

SaniDry Sedona

Do Finished Basements Need a Dehumidifier?

Basements, even finished ones with walls and flooring, are by their very nature, underground. Because of this they are some of the most vulnerable areas within our homes, as they can most easily be affected by the moisture retained within the earth. The best way to keep your belongings from moisture problems is by using waterproofing and water management techniques--such as basement dehumidifiers. 


Why Basements Need A Good Dehumidifier

Despite the appearance of a clean and healthy basement, many dangers can lurk just out of sight, growing and spreading to different areas of the home: mold, pests, groundwater and high levels of relative humidity are the greatest enemies of homeowners around the world. 

The trouble is that many companies use organic materials to finish basements, things like drywall, classic wood trims, and carpet. These organic materials are prone to develop mold and mildew in a humid environment, taking as little as 24 hours for mold to grow and begin to spread. 

Mold will begin to grow when the level of relative humidity within your basement exceeds 70%. When it does, it usually won’t take long to become apparent, as it feeds off of organic materials and spreads to different areas--first around the basement, and then around the rest of the home. This is why professionals in the industry stress the importance of keeping RH levels at or below 50%, as stated by the EPA, Environmental Protection Agency

For this reason, here at Total Basement Finishing, we finish all basements with inorganic materials and always recommend one of our Energy Star rated dehumidifiers to complete the job. 


Signs Your Basement Could Benefit from a Dehumidifier 

Mold in Finished Basement

So how do you know when you need a basement dehumidifier? Some of the warning signs to watch for include:

  • Condensation--A big sign of moisture issues is condensation, beads of water that will appear and soak into personal belongings and natural materials, facilitating mold growth. Often seen on basement windows and smooth surfaces, such as tables and mirrors in the basement.

  • Mold Spots--Depending on where the mold has found it’s foothold, this may be visible to the naked eye. Mold can spread very quickly once it’s found an agreeable place to grow, so it’s important to keep an eye on humidity. It’s common to see these spots on furniture and personal belongings kept within the basement.

  • Musty Odors--A common tip for many homeowners is an unpleasant odor in the basement, usually strongest around carpeted spaces or furniture. It smells wet and dank, and can travel through the home and into upstairs living spaces. 

  • Water Damage & Water Staining--Another very visible sign of humidity and moisture issues in a finished basement: sections of walls and ceilings stained by water, usually coming through the material, leaving it damp to the touch. This could eventually result in cave ins and walls crumbling apart if not dealt with in a timely manner. 

  • Allergies & Respiratory Issues--For members of the household with pre-existing respiratory issues or sensitivities, such as asthma, if there is mold in the home these issues will worsen. Even if no allergies or respiratory conditions are present, prolonged exposure to mold can cause these issues in otherwise healthy individuals. 

If you’ve noticed any of these things, or other issues such as wood rot or an increased number of creepy crawlies down in the basement, it’s time to call in the professionals. It’s never wise to try handling such large and pressing issues on your own, and the experts will be able to determine exactly what your basement needs to be a healthy space for the whole family. 


Choose A High-Performance Basement Dehumidifier

Here at Total Basement Finishing, we have our very own dehumidifiers! Our SaniDry Sedona is Energy Star certified, high capacity--up to 100 pints per day, and is proven to improve indoor air quality. It’s easy to operate, with a user-friendly LCD screen, and has an automatic self drainage feature so that you never have to lug water around. 

Dehumidifiers can do a lot of wonderful things for your home including reducing the risk for serious health problems and structural concerns, as well as serious property damage. The effects of high humidity in the basement can quickly spread, causing issues around the home more quickly than should be possible, but with a dehumidifier you’ll be able to rest easy, knowing that your finished basement is protected. 

If you’re concerned about the humidity in your basement, the experts here at Total Basement Finishing always conduct free, no-obligation estimates and consultations, so you know exactly what you’re dealing with, and how much it’ll cost--right down to the penny. 

Reach out today for your free quote


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