Tammy, we use one every summer in our basement. If not running, the cement floor is wet with moisture and just terrible.
I would look for one that does the largest square footage of air with a good sized water container to hold the water the machine will extract from the air. This is critical if you don't have a place to drain water off on its own.
It does make a big difference to the humidity in a room, we've found.
Tammy, I cannot understand why you have a high humidity problem when we are in a heating period of the year. If the crawl space or basement is wet then that needs corrected first. Otherwise you must have a clothes dryer or shower that is not vented or a water leak. You need to determine why you have this moisture and address that issue prior to getting a dehumidifier.
I use one and the main sources of my humidity problem is showers, dishwasher and washing machine in a tightly sealed house. They do work great, mine is old so I wouldn't recomend any brand names to you, just make sure you buy a good one and be aware of it's capabilities. I find that when I'm not using mine, the elevated humidity in the house makes it feel cold all the time, not to mention the ice that forms on the windows.
Actually we heat with a wood stove and I think the problem is that the heat from the wood stove does not get back to the 2 back bedroom enough to keep them dried out. Does this make sense? We also have a forced air propane furnace but we only use that when we are going out of town. Will a dehumidifier help this problem? I got into a closet last weekend and the wall was really wet and the books on the bookshelf have mold growing. (What a nasty sight!) Thanks again for the help.
We're in WV also and use a dehumidifier year round in our basement. It is not that there are leaks in the basement, but merely that the foundation is very thick stone blocks. They never get so moist as to drip or anything, but after heavy snow melt or rains there can be a dampness to the basement. In WV even at this time of year, outside humidity is frequently 90% or more.
Air circulation might be poor in general and affecting your back room. Try using a fan if you have one to carry the heat/dry air back there. Empty the closet and leave the door open after scrubbing it down. Paint it using "killz" brand paint after it is dry.
A dehumidifier lasts a very long time and is easy to operate. They do cost over $100 if I recall right after seeing them at the hardware store recently. You might find one used in good shape.
To maintain a dehumidifier, keep the filter clean. Periodically remove the pan that holds the collected water and scrub it out to keep molds, etc. from growing there. Inspect to be certain the cord is in good condition.
Buy a new one. There are new ones that work at lower temperatures and don't freeze up...so it is more versatile and will work better in the basement. Another reason to avoid buying a used dehumidifiers is that there was a massive recall on them 2 years ago. The manufacturer repaired the 2 we have for free, but I don't know if we would've found out about the recall if we hadn't sent in the new product registration card.
Leave the door open to the closet and have a fan blowing in there. Also check the roof and walls for leaks. Water follows the least path of resistance so the water on your wall might actually coming from a leak in your roof or plumbing and running along joists until it comes through the wall.
Thanks so much for all your help. We bought one yesterday at Lowes and it is already making a major difference in the dampness in the house. I just wished that spring would come and dry up all this dampness. Thanks again!
I have 2 steam humidifiers running 24/7 to keep the humidity UP... my woodstove has the house dried out so bad my nose bleeds.
my humidit gauge is now down to 28%, i havent filled the steamers today. They keep it up about 40%.
Something that can also help is taking off closet doors to walk-in closets (especially in a master bedroom, no one else is going to care if there is a door or not), or if you have sliding doors, put up a couple of "stoppers" (sorry, can't think of a more technically correct term here) at the top and bottom so the doors do not completely shut to allow for better air circulation.
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