How to Rid Moisture From a Basement Naturally

Excessive moisture in a basement can cause a host of problems.
Mold can cause respiratory problems.Mold can cause respiratory problems.
These problems include window condensation, peeling or blistering of paint, wood rot, insect infestations and musty odors. Perhaps the worst problem is the possibility of mold and mildew growth, which can damage basement materials and lead to serious health problems. Fortunately, there are several natural ways to remove excess moisture from the basement.

Step 1

Remove interior sources of moisture. The most natural way to remove moisture from your basement is to remove the sources of moisture. This may include humidifiers and water leaks. Similarly, clothes dryers should be removed from the basement or ventilated outdoors.

Step 2

Remove exterior sources of moisture. Removing exterior sources of moisture requires evaluating the gutters, downspouts and surface grading around the house and addressing any problems.

Step 3

Improve ventilation. Install as many windows in your basement as your building codes permit. Opening the windows will help remove moisture.

Step 4

Install an exhaust fan. Exhaust fans can help eliminate moisture and prevent it from spreading to other areas of the home. The capacity of an exhaust fan is measured in the number of cubic feet of air it moves per minutes (CFM). To determine the proper CFM for a room, multiply the cubic feet of the room, in this case the basement, by the number of desired air changes per hour, in this case 15, and divide that number by 60.

Step 5

Install a vapor barrier. Vapor barriers can be installed under concrete slabs to prevent ground moisture from moving up through the concrete. These vapor barriers should have a maximum permeability value of 0.50. Asphalt-laminated films, roll roofing and polyethylene are commonly used as vapor barriers under concrete slabs.

Step 6

Run a dehumidifier. Dehumidifiers are especially effective when moisture problems are confined to one area, such as a basement. Dehumidifiers are designed to remove moisture from the air and can be programmed to turn on automatically when the relative humidity in the basement reaches a certain level.

About the Author

Thomas King is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh School of Law where he served as managing editor of the "Pittsburgh Journal of Environmental and Public Health Law." He currently lives in Aberdeen, Washington where he writes and practices law.