If you have a basement or crawl space in your home (and let’s face it, most of us do) you could end up with a serious humidity problem not just in that space, but in other areas as well. Even if you haven’t noticed a hike in humidity or the signs of damp, that doesn’t mean it’s not lurking beneath your walls or floors.
You see the air we breathe doesn’t just come from outside, it comes from within our homes too. The problem with basements and crawl spaces is the warm air inside them tends to rise which means it will travel to other living areas, and if it’s not kept under control you could end up with a hefty repair bill.
Similarly, cold air will enter your house inside a crawl space. In fact, according to studies it’s estimated that around 40% of the air found in our living room comes from this part of your house. It kind of makes you disgusted when you think about all the things that can live down there doesn’t it?
To help prevent this getting a dehumidifier is a must, but since basements and crawl spaces are somewhat specific when it comes to air flow, you have to get a dehumidifier that’s made for those areas.
High humidity in your basement can compromise the structural integrity of your house, and damage electrical installations which can even lead to a fire. Wooden beams will begin to rot, and corrosion will settle in on everything that’s made out of metal. Inside your living area floorboards will begin to creak and bend, and you’ll start to notice damp spots on your walls as well as peeling paint. The list goes on!
If you notice any of these inside your home, you really need to get a basement dehumidifier. The most important characteristics to look for in a dehumidifier of this type are the ability to work in a low-temperature environment (auto-defrost is a must) and large capacity. Obviously, basements are cooler than the rest of the house, and they can cover a fairly large amount of floor space.
While your run of the mill home dehumidifier is able remove anywhere between 30 and 70 pints of water from the air, basement dehumidifiers are much more powerful because they’re capable of extracting 100 plus of moisture, and in spaces up to 2,000 square feet or more. This is the key requirement any basement dehumidifier must fulfil. Then there is the humidistat which will allow you to set the right level of humidity.
In case you’re wondering how to choose the right size dehumidifier, check out my article on sizing your dehumidifier.
Crawl Space Dehumidifiers
While doing my research, I wasn’t able to find a clear distinction between a basement and crawl space dehumidifier. In fact, most large capacity dehumidifiers are advertised as both.
I did however find that most crawl space dehumidifiers tend to have a horizontal design which makes them ideal for tight spaces. Again, in order to find the right size crawl space dehumidifier, read my article on dehumidifier sizing.
There are no major differences between these two types of dehumidifiers, so you don’t have to worry about what they’re called. Just remember you should make sure you consider capacity and the ability to work in low temperatures.