Excess moisture in the home can turn into a serious problem. When moisture levels are not kept in check, structural problems can occur. Too much humidity can stimulate mold growth and act as an attractant to household pests such as termites and crickets. As a preventative pest control method, you should take measures to stop excessive moisture within the home to avoid the costly repairs of structural or pest-driven damage.
Fix Household Leaks
Have you ever noticed standing water in your basement or around the house? If you have leaky pipes, then you’re going to have a moisture problem in your home. Check household pipes for rust or leaks and contact professionals for the appropriate repairs. After checking the pipes, look for any leaks that could be occurring around household sinks, showers and bathtubs. Always check the caulking around tubs, toilets and showers to see if these areas need to be re-caulked.
If water is entering your home from the outdoors, you need to find ways to divert the water away from the foundation. Your home’s drainage system should include gutters and downspouts that collect rainwater and transport it away from the home. You may also want to revise your landscaping to create sloping that will move water away from the foundation.
There are a couple of moisture control products and services you can use to mediate this problem. If flooding is a consistent issue in your basement, then a sump pump may be the solution for you. A sump pump collects water in a ditch at the lowest point in your basement and expels the liquid from your home. A French drain, on the other hand, will move water away from the house before it can enter and harm your home’s foundation.
Cut Down Crawl Space and Basement Humidity Levels
The dirt floors within your home’s crawlspace could be leading to significant moisture issues. Putting down a vapor barrier will help address this problem. In the basement, excess humidity can result from leaky concrete walls. To help, cracks should be repaired immediately, and waterproofing products should be considered.
Use Air Conditioners Year-Round
Believe it or not, air conditioners are useful for combating humidity throughout the seasons. However, avoid setting your home’s air conditioning fan to the “on” position because this can actually cause humidity by distributing air over wet coils within the system. The automatic setting is preferred. Check the air conditioning unit’s drip pans and drain lines regularly too. These parts should not be blocked and should be kept clean for optimization. Dehumidifiers can also be added to your home HVAC system.
If high moisture areas of your home aren’t getting proper ventilation, you are going to run into problems. Areas that should have ventilation fans include the kitchen, bathrooms, laundry room, attic and basement. Remember to turn on vent fans, including power vents, regularly and leave them running for longer periods of time if the humidity in the room is high. In the case that ventilation fans aren’t installed, open windows to dry the area out as needed. Exhaust fans typically require professional installation and should be vented to the outdoors. Attic fans can also be useful for controlling moisture levels throughout the home.
Since vents are the best and most convenient option for most homeowners, there is one vent you can purchase to help with the issue of seasonal humidity. The automatic temp vent can protect your home and crawlspace from moisture damage during hot and humid summer months. This option is appealing to most as the vents open and close depending on the temperature, taking most maintenance and human error (i.e. forgetting to adjust the vent based on the weather) out of the equation.
Certain household appliances are responsible for causing home humidity levels to surge. Kerosene heaters and humidifiers are responsible for increasing moisture levels. Avoid using them when you start to notice condensation on counters and windows.
If your home is carpeted, moisture issues may arise. Carpet fibers can absorb moisture and stimulate mold growth. If possible, decorate your home with smaller area rugs that can be easily removed from the room to be washed and dried on a regular basis. When installing new flooring, install a vapor barrier on the sub-level to reduce moisture levels coming in from exposed dirt. This is especially important when carpeting is being placed over concrete.
Just a few simple changes to your day-to-day habits could have a big effect on the moisture levels within a home. For instance, reducing the temperature of your showers will lessen humidity. Cutting back the time spent in the shower also helps. When cooking, keep pans covered if possible. Run your oven’s exhaust fan when using the stove.
Although you may love having greenery indoors, your houseplants could be contributing to your humidity problems. Houseplants release moisture into the air. Limit the number of plants you have inside or move them safely outdoors if possible. For any plants remaining inside, avoid over-watering them. You may want to focus on some landscaping outside the home, too. Heavy vegetation surrounding the home can trap in moisture. Trim back any trees and bushes that touch or are nearly touching the house.
Invest in a Dehumidifier
Dehumidifiers are vital to lowering humidity levels, especially in damp areas like the basement. Choose a well-rated model that is approved for the size of the room you wish to place it in. For instance, small Peltier dehumidifiers are usually only helpful in areas such as bathrooms and closets. Mechanical dehumidifiers are traditionally the best option for moderate to high moisture areas. If this sounds like the right moisture control treatment for you, learn more about the Crawlspace Care Installation package.
Remove Standing Water Around the Property
Getting rid of standing water not only helps with moisture control, but also will prevent pest invasions from insects like mosquitoes. Mosquitoes breed in standing water, so your yard can be overcome with these pests if you let water linger. Pots, garbage cans, outdoor toys and wheelbarrows are common spots to check for standing water.
We Help with Moisture Control Issues in the Carolinas
Do you have pest or mold issues because of too much humidity within your home? Get professional and expert help from Carolina Pest Management. With over 75 years of experience in pest control, our family-owned company has assisted countless customers located in the Carolinas and surrounding areas. Contact us today to see how we can help with our moisture control services.