Condensation on PVC and copper


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Old 06-24-11, 06:52 AM
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Condensation on PVC and copper

Hello all,
I noticed some significant condensation on the PVC line out from my sump the other day. So much so that it was dripping on the floor and I was worried there was a leak or a problem with the sump itself. After some investigation...no leak, no problem with the sump, just a lot of sweating. Any suggestions on how to fix this? Is it as simple as buying some of the foam insulators and putting them on the pipe?

Also, I have copper water (cold) lines in the basement that drip occasionally, should these be insulated with the same pre-made foam insulator sleeves as well?

Thanks for your help.
 
  #2  
Old 06-24-11, 08:21 AM
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The insulator sleeves are the quick fix, but that basement humidity can be causing issues that are not as obvious as dripping water. A significant portion of the air in your home comes from the basement, warm air leaks out high and replacement air seeps in low.

Depending upon the outside temp and humidity, sometimes you can just open a window during the summer. In some climates, you keep them closed and run a dehumidifier. The place to start is to pick up a gauge to monitor the RH down there. Remember it is a relative number and varies with the temperature. Anything over 50% and you are getting into mold country. If you ac the main house and this basement air is being pulled up into the house, where it contacts any colder surface it can deposit moisture just as it does on the cold pipes, except you won't see it.

Test and post
Bud
 
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Old 06-24-11, 01:22 PM
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Thank you Bud. I take it I can get a humidity guage at one of the big box stores?

In the event that I am way to humid...is a basement portable dehumidifier the way to fix things properly?
 
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Old 06-24-11, 03:10 PM
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There are lots of threads/posts here related to dehumidifiers. Getting rid of the water they generate is one concern, floor drain or existing sump pump. Humidity is not usually as big a problem in the winter, but if it needs to work when it is cold, there are better units that operate at lower temperatures.

In my experience, a dehumidifier in a basement is a must, especially as homes are tightened up to be more energy efficient.

Yes, the humidistats aren't that expensive and really tell you where you are. Try a few different locations in the basement to see how much it varies. Air with a certain amount of moisture will have a different reading based upon the temp. So it might be 45% in the middle of the basement, but 55% in a cool corner, same air and it is uauslly in those isolated corners where the mold gets started.

Bud
 
 

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