Monday, November 16, 2009

Moisture Control: Part 2

I made a trip to Walmart the other day and came home with a new dehumidifier. I bought the GE 50-Pint model that I was researching earlier this month. What I've discovered with Walmart is you can't trust their Web site for two reasons 1) the cost listed on the site doesn't usually match the in-store price and 2) the site usually says that your item isn't available in stores even when it is. The site had the dehumidifier listed as $194 and online only, but I bought mine for $168 in my local store. Score!

I hurried home to install the dehumidifier in the basement since it's been feeling a little cool and damp down there ever since my trusty Haier dehumidifier died. I unpacked the dehumidifier only to discover that it doesn't come with a discharge hose - you have to hook up a garden hose if you want to use this feature (or rather, I completely forgot that it didn't come with a hose in my excitement). No problem since Home Depot is just around the corner. Did you know that it is incredibly hard to find a garden hose that is smaller than 50' in length? I finally bought a 15' hose for $7.

My sump pump is out in the open in the basement but tucked into the NE corner. When I bought the house the old owners had these two wooden doors lying over the sump pump to hide it so I simply added some hinges to make an actual screen of sorts because who wants to look at a hole and pipes? This works just fine until I decide to drywall the basement, at which time I'll have something else built to hide the sump pump (likely a closet of sorts). Also, when I moved in the sump pump didn't have a cover - there was just a hole in the floor with pipes coming out of it. Gross.

Basement sump pump
Sump hole covered with a lid I bought from Home Depot years ago
So why am I showing you my sump pump? Because my dehumidifier empties directly into the sump hole so I don't have to worry about emptying the bucket and the sump hole is in a corner of the basement where the dehumidifier won't get in the way.

The tools: dehumidifier, garden hose and branch cutter

Step 1: I used a branch cutter (no that's not the proper term!) to easily cut the garden hose

Step 2:
I then screwed the garden hose onto the dehumidifier through a hole on the side of the unit.
Step 3: I replaced the bucket in the unit.
Step 4: I put the unit in place and fed the other end of the hose (the cut end) into the sump hole
Step 5: Finally I replaced the screen surrounding the sump pump then plugged in and set the dehumidifier to 50% humidity control.
My unit allows you to set the humidity level between 35% RH (Relative Humidity) and 80% RH, or you can set it for continuous operation. When you first use the dehumidifier you should set the humidity control to 45 or 50% and allow 24 hours for it to achieve the humidity level. If you still have damper air than desired, you can set it lower to select Continuous for maximum dehumidification. Currently mine is set to Medium fan and 50% humidity control - I'll check the basement at 7pm tonight and reset as needed.

What I also liked about this unit is that it has a light that tells you when to clean the filter since I'll be honest - I only cleaned my old one once a year.


  1. Hmmm.. I am planning to make something like that, thanks for guiding me through this. I've got some tips!


  2. Basements really do need to have a dehumidifier. It's a good option to control moisture, and it helps prevent damage among items that are stored in the basement. Aside from moisture damage control, it also purifies the air, cools one's body and lessens the skin irritation of people who are sensitive to humid conditions. It's a good thing you were able to replace your previous dehumidifier! Its light feature can also help you maintain it a little longer than your old one. Don't forget to clean it regularly, alright? :D


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