Author Topic: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea  (Read 8026 times)

Thegoblinchief

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Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« on: June 30, 2014, 02:26:22 PM »
So we've got a basement that's more or less one room, about 730 sqft. Humidity hasn't been an issue until the past couple weeks, but my combination of box fan + furnace fan isn't keeping up with the moisture from laundry and seed propagation area.

We're trying to avoid using the house AC as much as possible because good cross ventilation at high 80s (F), even with high humidity, is more comfortable than stuffy 80F with AC.

But the basement walls are getting sweaty, and I don't want mold to start growing, because both DW and I do have indoor allergies to some degree. The only airflow to the basement is a doorless staircase, so there's not a lot ventilation between upper floor and lower, so I think a dehumidifier will help knock humidity down.

A 30 pint model is a bit oversized but everything else I've seen is silly small (a couple pints at most). This is the one I'm considering:

http://www.amazon.com/Frigidaire-FAD301NWD-Energy-30-Pint-Dehumidifier/dp/B00AU7GOIK/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1404052891&sr=8-3&keywords=dehumidifier

Thoughts?

Rural

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2014, 02:52:21 PM »
That model is about what we have. It works well, and you likely won't have to run it continuously. It'll pull some power; any compressor does.


If your walls are sweaty, though, you need to do something, and that will not pull as much power as your AC. It will heat the basement up a good deal, though, so consider that -- are you easily cool enough in the house, or will the added heat mean you run the AC anyway?

Glenstache

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2014, 03:01:49 PM »
Note that if the fluid storage capacity is the issue, many of them can be retrofitted to drain continuously to a floor drain or other receptacle (set it over a 5-gal bucket, for example). Some units are already set up for this, others require a drill and some badassity.

I have a dehumidifier that I no longer use (saw one season of intermittent use) and would sell for a mustachian price if you're interested.

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2014, 03:21:30 PM »
I have a dehumidifier that I no longer use (saw one season of intermittent use) and would sell for a mustachian price if you're interested.

What state are you in and what model do you have?

Glenstache

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2014, 06:54:31 PM »
Will send info when I get home. I am in Washington.

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2014, 07:43:27 PM »
Cool, contacted the one ad. For some reason completely forgot to check CL.

neo von retorch

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2014, 07:46:33 PM »
Just a note that the "pint" listed in the name is a rating for "how much moisture you can expect to remove from the air each day" while the capacity is usually around the same for almost any unit. (In the first link, it's listed as having a 12 pint drain capacity or 1.5 gallons, which is typical.) So you buy higher or lower pint ratings based on how quickly the moisture returns to your basement, thus how quickly you have to remove it to keep a reasonable humidity level. If you have not had much of a problem, then a low rating unit might be more than enough.

Glenstache

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #7 on: June 30, 2014, 10:47:56 PM »
Looking at the CL offerings in your area, you are probably better off going local once you factor in shipping (they are kinda heavy). 

AaronMN

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #8 on: July 07, 2014, 07:43:44 PM »
Definitely worth getting.  Mold can grow when you get north of 55% humidity; it would be well worth the electricity to run.

Erica/NWEdible

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #9 on: July 07, 2014, 07:55:26 PM »
We got one when mold grew on our windowsills. Man that sucked. Trust me, the electricity and appliance price is FAR cheaper than home repair due to mold.

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #10 on: July 07, 2014, 08:30:13 PM »
Ours came in the mail. The humidity is better, but I think we'd need to close off the basement with a door to get it down to optimal levels. We'll see how the summer goes :)

okashira

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #11 on: July 07, 2014, 08:45:20 PM »
By dehumifying the air and drying the walls, it will just pull more moisture out of the ground, will it not?


Is there anything else that can be done to seal the foundation / mold preventative to get at the core of the problem?

AaronMN

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #12 on: July 08, 2014, 06:28:15 AM »
It may pull some, but you will be able to get your humidity down to livable levels.

The long term solution would be to lower the water table at your home.  Gutters, downspouts getting rain fall away from the foundation, ensuring you have a proper grade away from your home, sump pumps, etc. would all help if the moisture is coming from below.


GuitarStv

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #13 on: July 08, 2014, 06:56:57 AM »
We live in a humid climate and get days of 80 - 100% humidity pretty regularly through the middle of summer.  Our basement is finished and we have no moisture coming from the walls or floor.  However, the basement is always slightly cooler than the main floors.  This means that hot humid air from upstairs tends to work it's way downstairs to the cooler basement and it gets uncomfortably clammy.  Running a dehumidifier or the A/C is really the only way to rectify this situation.

I notice however that you mention two things specifically:
- Laundry room:  If you are drying clothes on racks indoors in the summer, DON'T.  An ass-ton of humidity comes off of those, and they're dry slower in the cool basement than any other room in your house.  Or better yet, dry 'em outside.
- Seed propagation area:  If you have large amounts of wet dirt in the basement, you will have high humidity levels.  Running the dehumidifier will dry out your plants.  Watering your plants will create a really humid environment in the basement.  If you have them on racks it may be possible to cover the racks/plants with polyethylene sheeting (can be purchased cheaply from home depot or wherever) which will help to keep the moisture where you want it and slow the leakage.

LibrarIan

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #14 on: July 08, 2014, 07:55:26 AM »
I have the exact model you linked to above. It works like a charm for my 1100 sq. ft. apartment. We just sit it in the central hallway and let it run, emptying it periodically. We take mold really seriously since the last apartment we lived in had it (and management lied and told us it didn't have a history of mold) and we had some health issues until we could move out. My walls don't sweat or anything, but I prefer just having a dry climate over getting seriously ill.

CaptainFrugal

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #15 on: July 09, 2014, 12:14:08 AM »
We just invested in a 70 pint dehumidifier this year, and I'm running it nearly constantly. We have extreme summer humidity here, and I've found that the wife is much more tolerant of higher ambient temps if its not humid inside. Running a dehumidifier is far cheaper than cranking down the A/C unit five more degrees. Here in southeast Michigan we don't experience nocturnal cooling, so in the heat of summer the windows are closed and the A/C runs 24/7 much of the time. The nighttime lows are frequently 75-80F with high humidity. Right now at 2am it's a whopping 11 degrees F below the midday high yesterday....

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #16 on: July 09, 2014, 06:29:04 AM »
I notice however that you mention two things specifically:
- Laundry room:  If you are drying clothes on racks indoors in the summer, DON'T.  An ass-ton of humidity comes off of those, and they're dry slower in the cool basement than any other room in your house.  Or better yet, dry 'em outside.
- Seed propagation area:  If you have large amounts of wet dirt in the basement, you will have high humidity levels.  Running the dehumidifier will dry out your plants.  Watering your plants will create a really humid environment in the basement.  If you have them on racks it may be possible to cover the racks/plants with polyethylene sheeting (can be purchased cheaply from home depot or wherever) which will help to keep the moisture where you want it and slow the leakage.

Thanks for the input!

The weather has been really rainy this year so far, but I'll probably string a clothesline outside for next summer. That said, clothes dry like a snap with the dehumidifier running :P

Next summer I plan to germinate indoors but set up a second grow area in the garage to keep the main humidity outside. I just don't have space in there right now until I reorganize some things.

soccerluvof4

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Re: Feedback on whether a dehumididfier is a good idea
« Reply #17 on: July 09, 2014, 07:14:58 AM »
I live just to the west of you in the lake country area and this has been one of the dampest summers I can remember. I think too the model you have chosen is sufficient and agree with the amount of humidity this summer for sure hook up a hose to end or you will be constantly be having to empty it.  With sweat on the the wells its going to take sometime to catch up. I doubt its a water table issue.  But I do like to drylock all my basement walls.  One other thing obviously is get as much sunlight you can in basement to avoid mold developing