A damp basement can lead to structural problems and mold growth. If you have a wet basement, your property could be at risk, and mold development might lead to respiratory problems, skin irritation, and other health issues. The good news is that there are things you can do to prevent moisture in your basement. Here are six tips to keep the basement dry and mold-free.
1. Clean the Gutters
Gutters help keep a basement dry by diverting water from the foundation of the house. Clean the gutters regularly to prevent them from becoming clogged and overflowing. Water seeping into the basement can lead to mold growth and structural damage.
2. Grade the Land Around the Home
When it comes to keeping a basement dry, proper grading around the home is critical. When you ensure the ground slopes away from the foundation, water flows away from the house. Good grading will help prevent moisture from seeping into the basement and causing problems.
3. Apply Waterproof Sealant to Basement Walls
While a waterproof sealant can’t guarantee to keep your basement 100% dry, it can help to reduce the amount of water that seeps in.
To apply the waterproof sealant, clean the surface of the walls to remove dirt or debris that could prevent the sealant from adhering correctly. Next, apply the sealant according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Be sure to follow all safety precautions when using any type of chemicals.
Once the sealant is applied, you may notice a difference in the amount of water that seeps into your basement. However, the sealant may take some time to cure and reach its maximum effectiveness.
4. Seal Cracks or Gaps in the Foundation to Keep the Basement Dry
To keep the basement dry, seal foundation cracks to prevent water from seeping into the space and causing damage. There are several ways to seal foundation cracks; choose the best method for your home.
One way to seal foundation cracks is by using caulk. Choose a caulk that is specifically designed for use on concrete. Be sure to clean the crack or gap well before applying the caulk, as this will help it to adhere better. Apply the caulk in a smooth, even line and allow it to dry completely.
Another way to seal foundation cracks is by using epoxy resin. This type of resin is very strong and can provide a lasting seal. As with any product, follow the instructions on the label for the best results.
5. Use a Dehumidifier to Remove Moisture
Dehumidifiers are a great way to keep the basement dry and free of mold. Make sure there is an available electrical outlet to power the appliance. Set the humidity level to 60% or less and allow the machine to do its job. You’ll need to frequently empty the reservoir or attach a hose to the dehumidifier and allow it to drain outdoors.
6. Ventilate the Basement to Keep it Dry
If you have a basement, it is essential to ventilate the space to keep it dry. In addition to using a dehumidifier, here are a few tips.
- Use a fan to circulate the air in the basement. Good airflow promotes evaporation and reduces moisture accumulation.
- Open windows and doors when weather permits, allowing fresh air to circulate and helping keep the basement dry.
Following these tips, you can reduce moisture in your basement and keep it dry and mold-free year-round.
American Home Inspection Services provides inspections to homebuyers and sellers including mold inspections in Southeast Michigan. Contact us to request our services.