It is important to know when you should use a dehumidifier in the basement. Its best to determine how humid your basement is before purchasing one. The most accurate way of gauging humidity levels is by buying and using a hygrometer. These devices measure relative air moisture content on a scale from 0% to 100%.
Once you've determined the humidity level your basement falls into during summer and winter, you will then be able to purchase a suitable dehumidifier.
A basement moisture content of 25 – 40% is ideal in winter, and during the summer months, anything above 60% can cause mold growth or lead to mildew.
Basement dehumidifiers provide a solution to the high humidity problem in subterranean spaces like basements. High levels of moisture are typically found in basements due to factors such as water seepage through the foundation. Mold and mildew that grow on damp surfaces cause structural damage over time, so it is important for homeowners with basements to install a dehumidifier before any damage is caused.
Humidity levels above 80% make it easy for mold and mildew to grow. By installing a basement dehumidifier, you help maintain humidity levels below the safe range to protect your home from damage that could be caused by structural problems or poor air quality.
Why Don’t Ordinary Dehumidifiers Work for the Basement?
Many homes have basements which are susceptible to high levels of humidity. The temperature in your basement is likely cooler than 65 degrees Fahrenheit, making home dehumidifiers ineffective for this environment.
Subterranean environments are much colder than enclosed areas above ground level. This is because the earth itself acts as an insulator, keeping underground areas at a cool 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Ordinary dehumidifiers don't work very well in these low temperatures and can leave your basement feeling humid on days when it's too cold to open windows for better ventilation and air circulation.
Basement dehumidifiers have been designed to efficiently remove excess moisture from environments below 65 degrees, keeping basements dry without them feeling clammy or damp throughout the year.
When you're buying a dehumidifier for your basement, make sure it has a drain hose, so you don’t have to empty the water bucket.
Using basement dehumidifiers is necessary for most homeowners with unheated basements. Make sure you buy one that can cope with the cooler, damper conditions found in most basements.