If you’ve ever dealt with moisture intrusion in a basement then you know how frustrating it can be. Every Construction Professional follows the “Building Code” for their project, so why are there problems? Here in New Jersey, the Department of Community Affairs regulates and enforces the various Division of Codes and Standards which are only a “Minimum Standard”. It takes a builder who recognizes that the Code doesn’t fit every situation to truly understand moisture intrusion management.
Moisture Degrades Building Materials & IAQ
Elevated humidity in your home helps create a cave-like environment. It is commonly found in basements and crawl spaces. But can also lurk inside wall cavities and places with poor ventilation. Building materials absorb elevated humidity and stimulate biodeterioration. It also attracts insects, rodents and microbial organisms. They all need moisture to complete their life cycles. Mold in particular has become quite a nuisance in Built Environments.
Also Read: An Introduction to Indoor Air Quality Testing for Homeowners
Where Does One Learn How to Address Moisture & IAQ?
First, find an experienced Environmental Contractor well versed in the Code and Moisture Management. They will help point you in the right direction. There’s a lot of relevant moisture & ventilation resources out there.
Great Government Resources
The Federal Government has great resources. Like the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Dept. of Energy (DOE) and Energy Star are a few. Here are a few links to help get you started:
EPA IAQ and Ventilation
Ventilation and Air Quality in Offices
Energy Star and Benefits of Mechanical Ventilation
DOE / EPA Moisture
Foundation Insulation Effectiveness
Moisture Control Guidance for Building Design, Construction & Maintenance (EPA)
A Brief Guide to Mold & Moisture (EPA)