LESLIE: Now we’ve got Doris from Delaware on the line who’s dealing with a dryer that thinks it’s a washing machine.
LESLIE: Tell us what’s going on.
DORIS: More frequently now, I have puddling in the bottom of the dryer, in the drum. It seems that on the top – and I’m going to call it the rib that’s in the inside, the drum – there’s condensation that drips. There’s no wet clothes in there and it’s probably maybe four or five days that – since I have used it. But this last couple times, it’s actual puddling.
TOM: Is it in your basement? Is that where the washer/dryer is?
DORIS: Yes, it is.
TOM: OK. And you must have …
LESLIE: Is it a newer dryer? Is it a steam dryer or is it your traditional dryer?
TOM: I don’t think it matters, Leslie. I think what she’s got is condensation and I think it’s because the basement is very humid.
Do you have a dehumidifier going down there?
DORIS: Yes, we do.
LESLIE: And is the dryer vented outside?
TOM: Yeah, I don’t think it has anything to do with the function of the dryer; I think it’s just warm, moist air striking a cold surface and condensing. And so, the solution is to lower the relative humidity in the basement space. And I – that work would start on the outside of your house.
I suspect that your downspouts may not be extended away from the walls, that the grading may be very flat. It could be very mulchy or lots of topsoil. You’re probably holding a lot of water right around the immediate foundation perimeter and you want to try to move some of that water away from your house. If you do that, the relative humidity will go down in the basement, because there’ll just be less water to accumulate at the foundation perimeter, and you should see some of that problem go away.
And by the way, as you get into the chillier months, you probably won’t see this coming back; it’s pretty much a summer type of a thing.
DORIS: Oh, OK.
TOM: Just think about it. It’s like when you take a glass of iced tea outside in the summer, you get water that forms on the outside of it?
DORIS: Right. Right.
TOM: Well, it’s kind of like that.
DORIS: OK. That’s something I will check out but thank you. I appreciate that. I would have never thought of that.
TOM: You’re very welcome. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.
My dryer also has water puddling in it. Mine is “not in the basement”. It started as condensation in the drum. Now I have actually found water in the drum. My washer & dryer are located in the laundry room. It’s between garage and living room and the door to the living room is always open. The house is air conditioned and on a crawlspace. Dryers aren’t made to hold water. I’m concerned that it is going to rust inside somewhere. Thanks for any ideas.
Dryers hold plenty of water in the form of wet clothes! This is condensation, and should not damage the dryer. I’d leave the door open a bit so air circulates in thiere.