LESLIE: David in Alaska is on the line with a question about moisture in basement. What can we do for you?
DAVID: Yes. What I’ve got is a daylight basement. It’s made out of Quad-Lock with a porch slab and getting a lot of moisture in on the – coming in from the outside. I put the Bituthene over the Quad-Lock and over the footing and I’m still getting a lot of water inside the house. In the wintertime – so when it’s bad, we have to run at least one, maybe two, dehumidifiers (inaudible at 0:05:14). Yeah, dehumidifiers.
TOM: Does it seem to be consistent with maybe the warmer temperatures in the winter, like where maybe it’s starting to melt a little bit? Or is it the same moisture in basement all the time?
DAVID: Yeah, pretty much the same all the time. And the Bituthene was sealed with a heat gun all the way down over the footing. But I don’t know if that’s where my problem’s at – that the house is close to 20 years old.
TOM: Typically, when you get high humidity and high moisture in basement like that, it’s because of drainage. The water has to melt, the snow has to melt, then it gets into the concrete one way or the other. And it gets drawn through because concrete is very hydroscopic. It really soaks up a lot of moisture and then it evaporates to the inside spaces.
If your drainage is in good condition on the outside – in other words, in the spring or the summer, you want to make sure that your soil around the house, if at all possible, has a good slope away. So that when that snow starts to melt, that water runs it that direction; it doesn’t fall down along the foundation where it could become drawn into the house. And then, of course, you also want to make sure that your gutters are clear and free-flowing and all that. Doesn’t sound like that’s as much of an issue for you in particular.
Now, you mentioned you were running a dehumidifier. What kind of heat do you have in this house? Is it forced air or what kind of heat is it?
DAVID: [For your stove?] (ph)
TOM: So it’s not – you don’t have a furnace – you don’t have warm air that’s blowing through it. It’s not ducted?
TOM: What I would recommend in that basement space is a better-quality dehumidifier.
David, take a look online at the dehumidifiers that are made by Therma-Stor – T-h-e-r-m-a-S-t-o-r. They have two brands. One is called Ultra-Aire and the other one’s called Santa Fe. They’re either free-standing or they’re designed to be suspended from the ceiling. I have one – I have an Ultra-Aire that I use in my basement, which tends to get damp even though I have good drainage conditions on the outside. And it’s been very effective for us. And it basically drains into a sump pump and it takes out a surprising amount of moisture from that space every single day.
So, that might be a good solution for you for the moisture in basement. I just asked you those earlier questions to make sure that anything that you can do physically to make sure water’s not collecting around the house is done. And it sounds like that might be the case. So the next step would to be install a good-quality dehumidifier. OK?
DAVID: OK. Is it energy-efficient?
TOM: Oh, yeah. Mm-hmm. Yes, absolutely. Alright, David?