Moisture can do some real damage to your property. Not to mention the mold that can potentially hurt your family’s health. This is why we put together an article to help you moisture proof your home before winter has reared it’s head behind the corner.
Direct water away from your home
Naturally the first step to moisture proofing your home is to not let it get wet in the first place. Sloping the ground near the walls of your home away from it so the incline naturally leads the water away from them is a good start. If water pools around the walls after rain, you should immediately seek to remedy that. Air conditioning drain lines should be lead away too. It may not seem like it’s expelling much water but over time the effect of constant dripping stacks up. A french drain around the base of your home can help greatly with this.
Clean your gutters
Your gutters are very important in regards to getting rid of moisture. For them to do their thing however, they should be maintained regularly. Ensure the fittings are intact and there are no cracks through which water can drip. They also have to lead water as far away from the facade as possible. It’s always better if they can connect directly to a drain pipe. Even if they are in perfect condition you still have to keep them clean, because all the debris and junk that gathers in them not only clogs them, but also retains moisture.
Choose a waterproof outdoor coating.
There is a number of waterproof products on the market that are easily applicable to external walls and ward against moisture. Take these in consideration:
- Waterproof Paint – Similar to vinyl paint but specifically design to offer improved water resistance. Always go for the breathable variant which in addition allow your walls to breathe, allowing moisture to escape through evaporation. It can be apply to previously painted surface but this can diminish the “breathing” effect.
- Concrete Waterproof Coating – This product is applied one time only to concrete and masonry like cement and does. It’s advisable to coat the surface while bare but it can also be applied to already painted surfaces.
- Silicate-based Concrete Sealant – This product reacts with masonry and conrete to form a waterproof coating. It can only be used on fresh walls, so it won’t work on painted or already sealed walls.
Pay attention to humidity
To successfully moisture proof your home you first have to figure out where most of it comes from. Is it the bathroom, the basement, or the laundry room? Knowing what you are dealing with will naturally help you deal with it. There are moisture detectors on the market if you wish to be scientific about it, but we find that with simple observation the task is easily achievable.
Ventilation is probably the biggest factor in keeping your home dry. A good airflow allows moisture to evaporate quickly and good ventilation allows it to be lead out of your house quickly. Keeping your HVAC in optimal performance will get rid of as much as 80% of the moisture in your home. This goes double for the bathroom. We recommend yearly duct and unit inspections to ensure yours is up to the task.
Dry wet areas immediately
Never let wetness linger. This can lead to mold formations. Whenever there’s a spill or leak in your home see to it as quickly as possible. Indoor plants can contribute to this as potting soil depending on its composition can retain a lot of moisture. If you have many of those always keep them in airy rooms where moisture can’t accumulate. Two or three plants aren’t a big deal but if you care for a lot of them, the best course of action is to spread them around the house instead of bunching them up together.
Vent appliances to the outside
Appliances such as the cooking stove and dryer are a prime source of moisture. It’s advisable to set them up in such a way that they have an external vent. Range hoods for stoves already offer a good option for cooking, but to get the most of them you have to ensure the external vent isn’t close to a surface where the steam can condense into water.
Dryers can be as good as if not better contributors for humidity depending on the size of your laundry loads. There are options on the market that allow for easy venting. If there isn’t a way to directly lead the moisture from the drying clothes outside, make sure your laundry room is properly ventilated.
There are a number of options on the market, and they all work well. We advise you to get one or two of these and strategically position them. Prime candidates for one are such places as under the kitchen sink, in the bathroom, or your plant room as mentioned above. The only drawback is that you’ll have to occasionally change their filters, which depending on the model can be expensive. However if you are having problems with accumulating humidity anywhere in your home, one of these will help greatly.