I’ve waterproofed my basement. So, why is my basement damp?

We get this question all the time. There’s nothing more frustrating than having a smelly, moldy, damp basement, and not understanding why.

“But I’ve already waterproofed my basement!” you say. “Why is my basement wet?”

Well, the problem might not be from problems outside the house, like seepage, runoff, and cracks in your foundation. If there’s no direct leak somewhere in your pipes or walls, you’re likely suffering at the hands of high humidity.

High humidity within your basement is a serious problem. Excessive moisture can lead to health problems including breathing issues and lowered immune system defenses, it can damage your belongings inside the home, contribute to structural problems, and cause a musty, dirty smell in all areas of your home.

There are a number of factors that can contribute to a damp, humid basement:

  • Do you keep your washing machine and dryer in your basement? They give off a lot of heat, which contributes to humidity in your basement. This can lead to musty odors and increased moisture levels.
  • Are your pipes insulated? If they aren’t, you’re risking moisture from condensation. The warm air from the dryer hits the cool pipe, and creates moisture.
  • What type of basement waterproofing systems have you invested in? At BWI, we hope you’ve avoided digging ditches around your home and waterproof paint, and instead went with our proven Bentonite injection. Those other solutions are not guaranteed to keep your basement dry—they actually let water in, just to pump it back out. That’s not the way we like to do things, because we know that can lead to damage in many homes.

So, what do you do if your basement is humid?

  • Do you currently run a dehumidifier? You should. That’s one of the easiest ways to maintain the moisture levels in your whole home. BWI specializes in whole-home dehumidification systems that are affordable and effective to clean the air that circulates through your home.
  • Use UV-germicidal lights. Turn them on every once in awhile to kill the bacteria that grow in moist environments. It’s inexpensive and simple.
  • Keep the dryer vents clear. Your clothes dryer emits high heat and moisture from the clothing. Make sure it’s well ventilated so moisture does not stay trapped in your basement.
  • Avoid storing items in the basement that hold moisture. If you keep clothing, linens, or papers in the basement, make sure you keep them in sealed containers. Once they are wet, they are likely to trap the moisture, grow mold, and cause unpleasant odors.
  • Insulate your pipes. Wrapping them with insulation is a simple way to guard against water damage from condensation.

If you think you may have a dampness problem in your basement, call the experts at Basement Waterproofing. We’ll come to you and help you understand why your basement is humid, and give you all the options to solve the problem.

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