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5 Ways to Improve Basement Air Quality

Musty, moldy basement.

If your basement smells musty, it’s a sign of mold and poor air quality that needs fixing. Making your basement healthy involves using different methods to keep it dry. We’ll show you how to get rid of the musty smell and mold, making your basement a safe space.

Best Tips for Improving Basement Air Quality 

1. Dehumidification  

Georgia’s humid summers can worsen your basement’s air quality, leading to mold and mildew growth. This mold can cause health issues like sneezing, coughing, and allergic reactions.

It’s crucial to monitor and maintain humidity levels below 50% in your basement to prevent mold growth. Using a dehumidifier can effectively control humidity and prevent mold and mildew.

2. Air Purification 

Ensuring the air you breathe is clean and free from allergens like dust and pollen is crucial for easier breathing and avoiding allergies. Air purifiers can significantly improve your basement’s air quality by filtering out these contaminants.

For the best results, choose an air purifier equipped with a HEPA filter, carbon filter, and ultraviolet light, which can eliminate up to 99% of airborne pollutants. Selecting the right size air purifier with these features will enhance your home’s air quality.

3. Proper Ventilation 

Improperly ventilated basements can accumulate air contaminants, but installing a mechanical ventilation system can introduce fresh, purified air, replacing the stale indoor air. If a ventilation system is too costly, using an air purifier alongside a dehumidifier can be an effective alternative to improve basement air quality.

4. Removing VOCs 

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) include things like paint, gasoline, oil, lacquers, stains, and many more. These items are often stored in the basement and can release toxicity in the air. It’s a good idea to remove any old or unused VOCs. Even if you don’t spend a great deal of time in your basement, toxic air from VOCs can waft to other areas of your home and pose a threat. 

5. Sealing Cracks & Gaps 

Radon, an odorless gas formed from the breakdown of uranium in soil, can enter basements through foundation cracks, posing a lung cancer risk and causing over 2,000 deaths annually. These cracks can also allow mold and mildew to grow, further endangering health. Consider covering basement walls with a vapor barrier and work with a professional for even more help.

What Causes Basement Air Quality Issues?

Basement air quality can become compromised due to a variety of factors, with one of the primary culprits being excess moisture or basement water issues. Here’s a rundown of how this happens:

  • Water Intrusion: Basements, due to their location, are prone to pooling water. Whether from ground water leaking through windows or from plumbing leaks, water can easily find its way into the basement. This can lead to an increase in humidity levels, making your basement an ideal environment for mold and mildew growth.
  • Poor Ventilation: Basements are often not as well-ventilated as other parts of the house. Without sufficient ventilation, moist air gets trapped, contributing to the high humidity levels that encourage the growth of mold and bacteria.
  • Condensation: In a basement, warmer air from upstairs can mix with cooler basement air, causing condensation. Persistent condensation can lead to damp surfaces, providing perfect conditions for mold spores to multiply and spread.
  • Lack of Sunlight: Sunlight is a natural mold killer, but basements usually don’t get much of it. This lack of sunlight combined with damp conditions can exacerbate mold and mildew issues, which can negatively impact the air quality.

The resulting poor air quality in your basement can manifest as musty odors, increased allergy symptoms, and the proliferation of mold and mildew. By addressing the root cause, primarily the water issues, you can greatly improve the air quality in your basement.


Yes! Basement waterproofing services often increase a home’s value by 10% or more. For a $200,000 home, that’s at least a $20,000 increase in home value! Basement floods are a major liability to homeowners, and every measure you take to prevent a flood from occurring is a worthwhile investment.

While basement floods are often covered by flood insurance, basement leaks from ongoing neglect are not. Your insurance company may not cover the costs of basement waterproofing products or installation, either. However, many companies provide incentives for having your basement waterproofed, such as lower flood insurance premiums.

At AquaGuard, we offer lifetime-warranted solutions that are designed to keep your basement dry permanently. Depending on the waterproofing solution designed for your home’s specific needs, we offer a variety of warranties and guarantees to ensure that your basement is safe and dry for years to come. If you have questions about how often you should maintain or replace specific systems, such as dehumidifiers or sump pumps, call AquaGuard today! We can discuss your home’s issues, our products and systems, and schedule an appointment to initiate the process for restoring your peace of mind.

Does Your Foundation Need Maintenance? 

AquaGuard Foundation Solutions specialists have been helping homeowners protect their basements for over 20 years! When it comes to expertise, and experience, no one does it better than AquaGuard.

Contact us today for your free inspection! Make your basement air quality concerns a thing of the past.

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