Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Dealing with Basement Moisture

Basement moisture is a real pain in the neck (to say the least.)  A wet basement is not only a breeding ground for unhealthy mold, but it can create a habitat for bugs, weaken walls, and really --here's the technical term-- make your house stink.  Fortunately, there are some remedies:  Here's one from the Cleveland Park Listserv. 

Since our daily deluges began last Thursday, I've noticed that the basement carpeting is wet about three feet in from the back corner of two exposed walls, neither of which has a door. I'm asking for advice/experience on: Getting the carpet dried, identifying the leak, avoiding mildew.


Basement moisture is a never-ending battle, and there are plenty of layers of solutions you can apply to the problem.  I'm certainly no expert, but can share with you some of the methods we've used.   However, for a quick attack to your current issue: If it's a lot of water, use a wet-vac to suction up as much as you can. Next, nothing beats a dehumidifier to remove the moisture that you describe and prevent mildew (ours has been running all summer). If you do have mildew or mold, we've found that the "mold-zappers" work well.  You can find them on Amazon.  

Check and see if you have an outside drain around that corner of the house.  We have one which drains directly to the city pipes.  It became silted in a few years ago, backed up, and all the water came straight into the basement.

If you see an outside drain, you might need to have it snaked.

The bigger issue might be clogged gutters, which are causing a spillover of water to the corner of your house, so definitely check and clean the gutters.  We had to replace a downspout and PVC piping all the way through yard, but it made a huge difference in getting the water away from house.

1 comment:

  1. We learned the hard way that basements - at least those prone to flooding - should not be carpeted. Once saturated, carpet takes forever to dry out. The result is mold. In addition to snaking the drains, I'd suggest the person rip out the carpeting and paint the basement floor - which is probably concrete under the carpet - with a mildew-resistant floor paint. If it should ever flood again, cleanup is much, much easier.