moisture how-to detect humid areas home

Moisture Matters: How to Detect Humid Areas at Home

Households get wet, and a moisture-free lifestyle isn’t possible in any home. Boiling water, heaters, baths, rain, and daily activities can introduce moisture to your home, and it’s essential to check your house’s walls for wetness regularly.

Of course, your home’s foundation and built-in materials reduce moisture, but long-term damage can occur behind closed doors. Mold, residue, weakened structures and soaked walls are possibilities in unchecked areas. As you scope your home for potential damages, you must protect it from mold, rot, and wet-related cracks.

Check out the following moisture detection strategies; you won’t regret it:

Strategy One: Check the Walls

Sometimes, visual indication is enough. Look at your walls, and check them for the following “moisture indicators”:

  • Yellowing wallpaper
  • Rounded surfaces
  • Mildew growth
  • Peeling paint

Often, wet wall interiors will reveal themselves at the surface.

Pay close attention to your interior’s wall structure, and contact a professional at first sight of a misaligned surface. While peeling paper may be peeling paper, trapped moisture should be dealt with quickly.

Strategy Two: Check for New Paint

Newly painted walls can be a dead moisture giveaway if you’re in a new home. Many leaving homeowners cover up problem areas to reduce expenses and speed up the move-out process.

Unfortunately, their negligence can be your problem.

Check for newly painted walls. Chances are, off-color areas are hiding water damage. Sometimes, the damage is minimal. Other times, however, it can hide deeper problems only to be revealed by home inspectors.

Strategy Three: Locate Buckling Floors

Buckling walls and floors are clear signs of moisture damage. If you can feel a raised surface as you walk over it, it’s likely to contain long-term water damage. Floor-based water damage typically occurs in bathrooms, where shower and sink leaks accumulate over time.

Other house areas can experience floor-based water damage, too.

Check your corners after a storm during home inspection, and examine window and door thresholds every springtime. Sometimes, water damage comes and goes, rearing its head following harsh weather conditions.

Strategy Four: Sweep the Basement

‘Sweep,’ here, refers to intensive checking. If your home has a moisture problem, it will first surface in the basement. Your basement is your home’s lowest point; moisture will collect in-wall leaks and residue first.

While your home foundation’s surrounding ground will soak up most excess moisture, structural-based leaks will almost always land in your basement. Check your basement for sewer, pipe, and wall leaks. Even a tiny leak can reveal pipe problems from above.

Strategy Five: Examine the Ceiling

Mainly, check any ceiling sharing a floor with your bathroom. When located beneath pipes, tile, and water basins, bubble ceilings reveal water damage. If your roof is flaking and bubbling, don’t wait. Likely, your bathroom’s tub area has sprung a leak. These areas, heavily tiled, rarely reveal water damage on the surface. If you’ve started a leak, the floor below will show it first.

Remember to check your home for water damage regularly. Sometimes, water damage occurs quickly during storms. Other times, your foundation and walls “soak up” moisture until fully saturated, revealed The Department of Energy.

You might have a moisture problem far before you see it—so keep a constant lookout and always discuss potential issues with your home inspector.