Published on February 1st, 2013 | by Henri


Venting foundation could worsen moisture problem

Q.    I have a California ranch with a full basement with half of it finished; the other half is part garage/storage (the house is built into a hill, the back is at grade, the front is underground).

I run a dehumidifier in both areas and it controls the moisture level well but I was wondering if I put a vent in the foundation would it remove some of the moisture or make the problem worse? I also have windows in the finished area and was wondering the same: Would opening the windows help or hurt? Right now I keep them closed and just run the dehumidifiers.

A.    In the humid part of summer, all basement windows should be kept closed and dehumidifiers should be kept running. Open the windows only on cool, breezy, dry days if you wish, otherwise all the wood components of the framing and other items stored in the basement will absorb the moisture in the air. This often leads to mildew.

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