A Dry Basement For the New Year

The idea of having a wet, mold-infested basement is long gone.  Families now expect to have a dry basement for extra livable space, a place where they can entertain, store personal items or as a playroom for their children. 

Extra livable space or extra storage should not be the only factors when considering waterproofing the basement of your home.  The health of your family should be the primary concern when considering this home project.

The Institute of Medicine’s research found the strong likelihood that mold is linked to serious respiratory system illnesses such as upper respiratory tract symptoms, cough, and wheeze in healthy people. These symptoms can be acerbated with people suffering from asthma or other respiratory illnesses as well.  If you have small children or children that are susceptible to develop asthma, a wet and moldy basement cannot only accelerate but prolonged their illness and symptoms.

For many families with older homes, the tar around the foundation of their home might be gone or severely diminished. Water might be slowly, but surely seeping into the walls and foundation of your home causing damage or making the basement unlivable.

If the basement of your home is wet, has water sediments, or puddles on the basement of your floor, chances are you have mold as well.  Mold typically grows in wet places or places with a lot of moisture. Mold can grow on the drywall, furniture, fabrics, carpet, and insulation.  If you have water in the basement of your home, chances are the items you have stored there are moldy, rusty and need to be thrown away.

How can you prevent mold from growing in the basement of your home?  The Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention (CDC) offers three very easy steps to follow for controlling the mold in your home.

  1. Control the humidity levels in the home. Kitchen and bathroom fans should be used to help control humidity levels when cooking and showering.
  2. Fixing leaky basements, roofs, windows, and pipes of your home can help you control the humidity in your home.
  3. Cleaning and drying the basement after a flood is paramount to keep mold for growing unchecked in the basement of your home

Mold is dangerous if left unchecked.  Preventing it from growing in the basement should be our first step in becoming healthy.

So, if you were thinking about a new bathroom or kitchen remodeling for a project this year, check the basement of your home and see if that is needed first and foremost.  It is not sexy and perhaps not what you wanted, but if it is needed, you will be happy and healthy in the end.