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Basements are notorious for being damp, just by virtue of being underground. If you have a damp basement, your first job is to find and stop any possible water penetration. If your basement is watertight but still feels damp, or if it registers more than 50 percent humidity on a humidity meter, it’s a good idea to use a dehumidifier.
Listen to BOB VILA ON DEHUMIDIFIERS or read the text below:
A dehumidifier is about the size of an air conditioner, but it doesn’t require window installation. It works by pulling moisture out of the air, then directing it into either a collection tank or through a hose to a drain. If you’ll be collecting water in the tank, you can place a dehumidifier anywhere you have an electrical outlet.
The dehumidifier will turn itself off when the tank is full, so you’ll need to empty it every time that happens. Depending on how humid the room is, that might be once a week or several times a day.
If you’d rather send the wastewater right down the drain, you’ll need to position your dehumidifier near a sink or a floor drain. Unless the dehumidifier has a pump, it drains using gravity, so if you’re draining it into a sink you’ll need to position the dehumidifier above the level of the sink so that the water runs down into it.
Bob Vila Radio is a newly launched daily radio spot carried on more than 75 stations around the country (and growing). You can get your daily dose here, by listening to—or reading—Bob’s 60-second home improvement radio tip of the day.