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Wet Basements and Mold

Oct 11, 2007
Those of us who have basements in our homes see it as either a curse or a blessing, depending on the condition of it. You can leave the drywall and carpet out of the basement and use it for storage like many homeowners do or you can put it in and use it for an extra bedroom, family room, or an area to entertain guests.

The bad thing about using the basement sometimes, though, is that if it is not properly waterproofed, you can have some moisture and humidity issues to deal with later on if you are not dealing with them already. No one wants to stay in a humid, smelly basement for long and this will turn off any guests that you might want to have over in that area.

Take care of any indoor water issues first. This can include bursting water pipes, hot water heater (that really should be in the basement and nowhere else) or if you use a portion of the basement as a laundry room, it can be a malfunctioning clothes washer. Make sure that your dryer has a vent so that the excess humidity will be directed to the outside of the house.

It is also a good idea to never hang clothes up to dry in the basement, unless it is just a single article or two. Water evaporates from the clothing and settles into the air, creating humidity. Clothes should also be dried in the electric dryer as soon as they are done washing to help reduce this problem.

Another thing you should do, especially if you use the basement for a laundry room or if you have an extra bathroom in it, is install an exhaust vent. You can do this in more than one spot if you need to, depending on the size of your basement. This will displace some of the humidity to the outside of the house and not allow it to be soaked up by the ceiling.

Another thing to worry about when you have a humid basement is mold. Mold loves to grow on any dead organic material and once it starts growing, you will be hard pressed to get rid of it without removing the source of the water first. If you have water issues in the basement, make sure these are taken care of before putting any carpet down, since carpet that becomes molded is hard to clean and any padding underneath it that becomes contaminated will have to be torn up and thrown away.
About the Author
Jim Corkern is a writer and promoter of quality
Florida water damage restoration companies and
Miami Water Damage Restoration. contractors
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