8 Ways To Fight Back Against a Wet Basement

Many of the homes in Toledo, Ohio have the unfortunate privilege of being susceptible to damp, wet, or even flooded basements. Not only does this damage the home you are renting or purchasing, and quite possibly some of your belongings that may be stored in the basement, but it also can lead to something potential worse, mold and mildew. When moisture levels increase in a basement, these unwanted house-guests will rear their ugly little heads. Follow these 8 steps to ensure you are doing everything you can to protect you and your family from mold and mildew in your rental home.

1. Clean Regularly

One of the most important aspects of keeping mold and mildew at bay is to make sure to keep problem areas as clean as possible. If you notice mildew in area, mix 1 tablespoon of liquid laundry soap and 2 cups of cool water. Apply the suds to the stained area with a damp cloth, sponging lightly. Then repeat until the stain is gone. Rinse it thoroughly then dry the area completely.  For fabric you can use ammonia and cool water to sponge the area well, then rinse with cool water. Be sure to dry everything extremely well, either using a fan or even a blow dryer.

2. Reduce Moisture

Reducing moisture can happen a lot of different ways, some handled by you and your family, and some handled by the landlord (if you are a renter). As a renter your main concern is to make sure you are not creating your own moisture issues. This could mean leaving windows open, not properly ventilating areas when needed, or even not cleaning up spills. When all else fails and you’ve done the basics, a humidifier can help keep problem areas from accumulating too much moisture. Ask your landlord if a humidifier is a good option for you.

3. No Wet Items in Basement

Sometimes we just don’t know what to do with items that have become soiled. Say you are cleaning up a large spill in the kitchen and you use 3 full-sized towels that are now soaked with something like Kool-Aid or even water. DO NOT toss these objects in the basement and just leave them there. This is like putting gasoline on a fire, and it will not end well. You want to make sure you are taking the time to clean and dry all objects that become wet, especially if you live in a home that has known moisture issues.

4. Remove All Clutter

We have all been tempted to just store objects in the basement so that we can have more room and less clutter upstairs in our living area. While this seems fine and dandy in a normal scenario, if you happen to live in a home with excessive moisture issues, this could lead to making the problem much worse. By having clutter and various objects taking up all the space in your basement, you are taking away its ability to ventilate itself, or breath so-to-speak. Keep all clutter to a minimum and consider getting storage if you have items that need put away for a good amount of time.

5. Report All Leaks Immediately

If you happen to notice a leaky pipe anywhere in your rental home you need to make sure to contact your landlord right away. All leaks can come with pretty hefty consequences if left unattended, and this rings especially true if you live in a house that is susceptible to moisture build up. Pipes, vents, excessive condensation, washer, dryer, sinks, toilets, anything in your home that create moisture, can leak.

6. Report Clogged Gutters Immediately

If the gutters on your rental home’s roof become clogged with leaves and debris this can have a laundry list of consequences. The biggest when it comes to homes that have too much moisture is the fact that it could cause the water to not flow away from the home. Instead the water could end up spilling out of the gutters and landing close the foundation which could allow the water to build up and seep in to the home. If you notice any water spilling from your gutters and NOT going down the downspouts, contact your landlord immediately.

7. Check Your Dryer Vent

This seems simple enough, your dryer creates a lot of heat and it uses a tube in the back connected to an exterior ventilation port to get the hot air out of the house. If the air does not freely exit the home the heat will cause large amounts of condensation and increase the moisture in your basement or home considerably. Always make sure there are no holes in the tubing and that it is securely fastened on both ends.

8. Do Not Use Carpet

Unless your basement is completely finished there is a rarely a time that carpeting is called for. Sometimes people will lay it down just to make the area feel a little more homey and hide some of the concrete. It is bland and boring, why would you? Well that’s pretty easy. As we mentioned before, your basement needs to breathe. It needs space to be available to ventilate and allow moisture to evaporate normally. Just like adding wet objects or loads of clutter, adding unnecessary carpeting will drastically increase the moisture issues in your rental home.


Considering that there are a laundry list of health concerns surrounding mold, and how easy it is to get mold in a home that has excessive moisture levels, we urge you to be very cautious when dealing with moisture, spills, leaks, and anything of the like. Keep in constant contact with your landlord if you have concerns or issues, and don’t forget, buying a dehumidifier for your rental property is never a bad idea. In face, it may help things considerably.

If you have any questions about rental properties available in Toledo, Ohio please contact us now to learn more!

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