In many areas of the country, homes have basements. Basements work well for extra living space. Homeowners may also use the basement as a safe space during dangerous storms, such as tornadoes. A basement can cause problems, however, if you do not care for them properly. Moisture remains one of the biggest problems for a basement. You can prevent damage and keep the space healthy with proper preparation and maintenance.
When you purchase a new home have the entire house inspected for foundation problems. You may notice cracks in the floors or walls if you have foundation problems. Get a professional opinion before attempting repairs. If you have underlying foundation problems, the cracks may return after you repair them.
You can prevent problems with your basement by hiring a basement waterproofing company. You must have sealant reapplied every 2-5 years to keep your basement in the best condition. You can also prevent problems by taking good care of your yard. Make sure your trees reside at least 15-20 feet away from your house. Check drainage regularly, as well. You may have drainage problems if you notice standing water in your yard. With proper grading and clean gutters, water should move away from the house.
Humidity builds up in basements when moisture gets inside. With proper waterproofing, you can prevent water from outside sources. Moisture can also build up inside your basement from showers and appliances. Many people use their basement for laundry and food storage. A dryer emits moisture as it dries the clothes. A refrigerator or freezer may produce condensation. If you have a bathroom in the basement, steam from a shower can also contribute to humidity in the air. You can add air conditioning vents or use a humidifier to keep the space dry.
If you need repairs, get them done quickly to avoid severe issues. Water can enter your basement through very small cracks. Call a professional as soon as you notice damage to the basement or other parts of your home. Cracks, sticking doors, and standing water can happen when you have foundation problems.
While opening windows can help air out your basement, look out for extra condensation when you have them open. If the air outside carries a lot of humidity, condensation may form on surfaces in the basement. Depending on the weather, you may need to use a dehumidifier to help with air quality after you open the windows.
When you learn to take care of your basement, you can avoid serious damage. Taking good care of your foundation helps prevent damage to the basement. You can start maintaining your foundation by taking good care of your yard. Make sure the soil drains properly and plant trees away from the house. Adding an air conditioning vent or dehumidifier can also help the basement stay dry and comfortable. If the humidity level suddenly rises or you notice cracks, get a professional inspection and repair immediately. With proper care, a basement can become a great asset to your home.