How to Control Moisture in Your Basement This Summer

In recent newsletters we have discussed asbestos and household mold, a common concern in many homes. For this newsletter we wanted to focus on controlling humidity in your home, especially in the basement, which are prone to problems related to excess moisture.

RTS Environmental Services wants to help by providing you with the facts about moisture in the home so you can take the steps necessary to prevent a small problem from becoming a major crisis.

Keeping Humidity in Check

Whether you use your basement for storage or as a living area, the lower level of your home is vulnerable to damage from humidity that can eventually lead to problems with mold and mildew. Controlling the humidity in your basement is the key to creating a healthy and livable space that your entire family can enjoy.

Household occupants are usually very comfortable when the temperature and relative humidity are maintained within the ranges of 68 to 72 degrees and 25 to 50 percent relative humidity, but maintaining a proper humidity level isn’t always easy. Normal household activities such as cooking, cleaning, bathing, washing and drying clothes – even breathing and perspiring – can raise the humidity level too high.

It has been estimated that the typical family of four converts three gallons of water into water vapor per day. It takes only four to six pints of water to raise the relative humidity of a 1,000 sq. ft. house from 15 to 60 percent. To avoid the problems of excess moisture it is necessary to limit or control the amount of water vapor in the house.

For effective humidity control in your home, follow these suggestions:

  1. Ensure that the exterior of your home has a sloped grade and moves water away from the foundation.
  2. Extend the down spouts by at least 3 feet away from your foundation and assure the gutters are free of debris.
  3. Operate a dehumidifier in the basement especially after heavy rain and humid weather.
  4. Additional air movement also helps to mix humid air with dry air allowing a dehumidifier to be more effective at drying. Operate an inexpensive circulating fan in rooms with poor ventilation.
  5. Check your clothes dryer vent to assure it is pushing its exhaust outside and not into your house or attic.
  6. Retrofit your HVAC unit (Heating, Ventilating, Air Conditioning) to provide effective return inlets low to the basement floor if one does not exist now.

We can help answer these questions…

Contact Information
RTS Environmental Services, Inc.
Tel: 1-800-722-5589
301-607-6276 Maryland Line
Fax: 301-831-6235
Email: info@rtsenvironmental.com

www.rtsenviro.com

Consumers: Ask About Your Contractor’s Mold Certification

These days, lots of contractors say that they’re experts. But are they really? Before you hire someone to inspect, test, or remediate mold from your home or business, ask about their mold certification.

Some contractors obtain Mold Certificates from organizations that aren’t very credible. The most credible organizations for certifying mold professionals are the American Indoor Air Quality Council and the American Board of Industrial Hygiene.

The American IAQ Council has several mold certifications related to both mold inspection and mold remediation. The following list describes their mold certifications and the associated experience requirements which are dependent on university level of education:

  • Certified Microbial Investigator (CMI), requires minimum 1-2 years of field experience
  • Certified Microbial Consultant (CMC), requires minimum 4-8 years of field experience
  • Mold Remediation
  • Certified Microbial Remediator (CMR), requires minimum 1-2 years of field experience
  • Certified Microbial Remediation Supervisor (CMRS), requires minimum of 1-5 years of field experience
  • The other recognized certifying organization, the American Board of Industrial Hygiene (ABIH) has a more general certification, Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH).

You can view our certifications here. RTS has provided thousands of inspections including Radon gas, Lead Paint, Asbestos, and Mold / Indoor Air Quality issues. With more than 20 years of experience in the environmental, mold and asbestos industry, RTS Environmental can protect your family and your home from the dangers of mold.

Contact Information
RTS Environmental Services, Inc.
Tel: 1-800-722-5589
301-607-6276 Maryland Line
Fax: 301-831-6235
Email: info@rtsenvironmental.com