|Check Your Plastic Vapor Barrier
Before you begin installation, it’s a good idea to double check your vapor barrier. Make certain the plastic sheeting is secured and that all vents and cracks are tightly sealed to provide effective moisture control.
What to Do With Your Crawl Space Vents
Until recently, crawlspace vents were designed to allow outside air into the crawlspace to help reduce humidity. This practice began in 1938, but is currently being phased out. Some out dated websites and contractors still repeat the fallacy that adequate venting will reduce crawlspace moisture levels. The reality is that venting will only reduce crawlspace moisture levels when the outside air is dryer than 40% Relative Humidity. Yet, in humid climates and conditions, the outside air will actually contain far more moisture than what you want in your crawlspace.
Where to Place Your Dehumidifier
When locating a spot in the crawlspace to place your dehumidifier, it is usually best to place the unit in the middle of the crawlspace. This will provide a more centralized airflow that will allow your crawlspace dehumidifier to efficiently remove the most amount of moisture. If you are using multiple units, space them apart to cover maximum area.
Raised Blocking for Proper Drainage
The next step is to determine how far off of the ground you must place the unit to allow for effective drainage. The unit must be placed higher than the drain to allow the water to flow downward and out of the crawlspace. This is referred to as a gravity drain. Depending on the depth of your crawlspace and grading, you can place the dehumidifier on cinder blocks or you may simply use the half pallet on which the unit was delivered. We do not recommend pouring water into the unit, though some people have been known to disregard our warning and remove the filter so that they may gently pour a cup of water into the styrofoam drain pan to test the effectiveness of their drain hose positioning.
Setting Up Your Drainage System
There are three ways to drain your crawlspace dehumidifier:
- through the sump pump
- through your existing HVAC/drainage systems
- create your own drainage system
Creating your own drainage system is pretty easy. Make a hole in your vent or outside wall, just big enough for the drain hose. Be sure it drains far enough away so it cannot re-enter the crawlspace. Depending on the size of your crawlspace and drainage logistics, you may need a condensate pump with additional drain tubing. This is optional on most crawlspace dehumidifiers, and you can find them by clicking Buy-Now in the navigation above.
The final step is to make sure your crawl space dehumidifier is plugged into a properly grounded outlet. To insure smooth and safe operation, clean the dehumidifiers’ filters yearly, as recommended in your instructions.
Clean Up That Moldy, Wet Crawlspace Below Your Home
By installing your new crawlspace dehumidifier, you have not only helped protect your home from moisture damage, but you are also helping to protect the health of you and your family by improving your indoor air quality. The air beneath your home directly feeds into the air above where you live and breathe. Mold colonies beneath your home constantly release spores into the air that travel upward into your home. An effective crawlspace dehumidifier will dry out the mold colonies, causing them to fall dormant. Maintaining a dry crawlspace will also prevent new colonies from forming. Mixing bleach with water gives you a solution you can use to clean up and kill any existing mold. This is usually a good practice when installing a dehumidifier. To purchase one of our unique Dri-CrawlSpace® Dehumidifiers, go to the Buy-Now page in the top navigation.