Mold/Mildew on Basement Walls?


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Old 08-05-14, 03:40 PM
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Mold/Mildew on Basement Walls?

My wife and I just started noticing these spots on our basement walls (drywall). They are spreading and I'm thinking it's some sort of mold/mildew problem. Here are some facts...
-The basement is a little damp but no more than any other typical basement. The HVAC for the house also serves this basement area.
- The spots are easily removed with a damp cloth almost like they are just dirt. This makes me feel like it is just on the surface of the drywall from the inside and has not come through from the other side.

Anyone have any ideas of what is causing this? I'm working on just wiping down the walls but not sure if there is anything better I can do. Do I need to call a professional in?

Any help appreciated.

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Old 08-05-14, 07:24 PM
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Even if the moisture didn't pass through the wall, how did it get there & when did it start? Was any other work done inside or outside of the house?
 
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Old 08-06-14, 03:14 AM
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just a wag but it looks like either mold or mildew,,, ' little damp ' = what % humidity ? do you run a dehumidifier ? IF so, on what setting ? just running 1 won't resolve any m/m issues behind the drywall,,, far's calling in a pro, how handy are you as this is a diy forum for most

lettuce know
 
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Old 08-06-14, 03:35 AM
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The basement is a little damp but no more than any other typical basement
That indicates that a dehumidifier needs to be used .... or a bigger one if you currently run one. If the humidity is too high there is always the chance of mold/mildew. I'd clean the walls, get the humidity under control and see if it returns.
 
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Old 08-06-14, 05:10 AM
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Do you know what is behind those walls, insulation (what type), vapor barrier (where in the wall?) and framing?

You need a meter (not expensive) to be able to monitor the humidity (RH). The RH also varies with temperature so the same basement air will have a higher RH closer to a cooler wall.

You also need to be looking for the sources of moisture and do whatever you can to reduce/eliminate some of them.

Bud
 
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Old 08-06-14, 12:32 PM
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There is currently no dehumidifier for the basement. It's interesting because we've lived in the house for about 4 years and are only just started noticing this issue about a month or two ago. No major work was done in or outside of the house. I don't have a humidity meter but might get one now to give me a better idea of the %. I will need to look into my options for a dehumidifier. I'm pretty handy but wasn't sure how involved it would be to make sure it's done right. I don't know what is behind the walls except for a brick wall that separates my unit from the unit next door. I doubt there is a vapor barrior or even insulation but I could be wrong. I wasn't involved when they renovated the house.
 
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Old 08-06-14, 12:39 PM
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You tell me your basement has a moisture issue and that there is not a dehumidifier in place and my first thought is to get a dehumidifier and see what happens.

Additionally, make sure the dehumidifier is set to a reasonable level - one thread going on the forums now had someone using one which was set at 60%, which is too high.
 
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Old 08-11-14, 12:37 PM
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Additionally, make sure the dehumidifier is set to a reasonable level - one thread going on the forums now had someone using one which was set at 60%, which is too high.
Was following this thread, and just wondering what you think the optimal humidity level should be? Mine runs 24/7 in my basement and the level is between 49-51% all summer long. Is that to high?
Thanks!
 
 

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