Different things can cause your basement to be wet or damp. The first step to drying out your basement is to find out what is causing the problem. A basement waterproofing contractor can inspect your basement and look for signs of foundation damage, drainage problems, and ventilation issues that lead to condensation. Some waterproofing methods are costly and disruptive, but if your basement is damp due to condensation, the repairs are easier. Here are the signs of condensation and how the problem can be fixed.
Signs Of Basement Condensation
Condensation forms in your basement because the walls and pipes are cooler than the air in the space. This causes the humidity in the air to condense and drip down walls. When dampness is caused by condensation, you may see water dripping from exposed water pipes in your basement and dripping from around the windows. The walls in your basement may feel sweaty or have drips of water running down them. This can cause the floor to be wet and damp.
While condensation may sound like a less serious problem than foundation cracks, it can still cause significant water damage to your home. The problem should be corrected to prevent water damage, reduce the risk of mold, eliminate stale odors, and dry out your basement so you can use it for storage or living space.
How Condensation Can Be Stopped
Your contractor will look for things that contribute to high humidity in the basement. One problem could be ventilation to the outside through a vent to a crawlspace that isn't encapsulated or through an open window. An opening to the outside lets warm, humid air into the basement and this increases the amount of condensation you experience. Other things that can cause increased condensation are venting a dryer into the basement and having cold water pipes exposed.
Eliminating condensation may take a number of fixes. Your contractor might start with wrapping all exposed pipes in insulation. Placing insulation on the walls might be necessary too. If you have a dryer, it is vented to the outside and installing an exhaust fan can help draw out humid air. Your contractor may also install a dehumidifier in your basement to keep the air dry, but sources of excess moisture should be cleared up as well.
If you're planning to finish your basement for use as a family room or game room, you'll want to make sure the condensation problem is corrected before you start your renovations or you may have to put up with dampness and a musty odor when you watch TV or play cards in the basement. It's worth hiring a contractor, like All-Systems Waterproofing Inc, to uncover the exact cause of your moisture problem and implement effective treatments so you'll have peace of mind your basement will stay dry.