What’s that Musty Smell and How Can I Fix it?

As the warm, wet spring and summer months approach, many homeowners are starting to get that musty smell in their home.

What is the cause?Mold and mildew. The places that have the highest relative humidity in your home in the summer are the basement and crawl space – a perfect place for mold to grow! The mold is fed a constant source of moisture, even without any noticeable water intrusion. It doesn’t have to be WET to grow, just humid.

What is the fix?To reduce the water in the air, you must dehumidify the space. Prevention is the key. When we control the moisture, we control the mold. A dehumidifier is the best way to keep your basement and crawl space dry and mold-free during the wet, humid summer months.

Below are some things to consider when selecting the right dehumidifier for your home:

  • Is it self-draining? It should be.
  • Is it Energy Star rated? It should be.
  • How powerful is the blower? Does it have a 250-cfm blower or greater to handle the air movement in your basement?
  • Was the unit designed to perform in extreme environments, such as a basement or crawl space?
  • Does the unit run constantly or shut off when the air is dry? It should not run constantly (that is a waste of energy).
  • Can you monitor and adjust the dehumidifier from the upstairs of your home?
  • Is there a notification light that lets you know if/when your system needs maintenance?
  • Can it be ducted to help dehumidify other areas of your home?

If you answered “no” to any of these questions, then you may not have the right dehumidifier for your home. A commercial-grade dehumidifier is an essential element for keeping a basement or crawl space dry and mold-free during the humid months. If you are beginning to get the “musty basement smell” in your home, contact Tar Heel Basement Systems for a moisture reading and inspection.



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