Informational Guide

Do Basement Dehumidifiers Help The Whole House?

Learn about home humidity and what is necessary for healthy home air.

by Josh M

Basements serve many different purposes in the home. If they don’t have good air quality, it could spread throughout the rest of the rooms in your home. You’ll want to make sure that the air there isn’t too humid, so you’re not uncomfortable.

Wondering, “will a dehumidifier in the basement help the whole house?” Here’s what you need to know about why you should add one of these units to your basement.

Dehumidifier with Condensate Pump

Why Do Homes Need Large Scale Dehumidifying?

The basement is always damp, when it really shouldn’t be. When you let it stay damp, you run the risk of water damage, mold, and mildew appearing in your home. This could also harm your foundation, leading to costly repairs.

Water always makes its way into the basement since it’s the lowest point of the home. As a result, moisture can enter the basement or even home crawl spaces after heavy rain or simply after a family member taking a shower. Because of this, it’s essential that your home has large-scale dehumidifying in the basement.

Here are all the ways water can enter the home:

  • Rainwater entering through the cracks
  • Leaks From bathroom, toilet, water & gas pipes
  • Gaps in the window framing
  • Unvented clothing dryers
  • Heat from the kitchen
To Basement Arrow Sign

How Does a Dehumidifier In The Basement Help The Whole House?

Having a dehumidifier in the basement will help your whole house feel less humid. Since the basement is such a huge collector of moisture, controlling it helps lower humidity levels throughout all your rooms.

When the basement’s humidity level reaches 80%, you’ll be able to feel it. Plus, this level makes it so much easier for mold to appear- which could quickly grow anywhere in your home! Simply adding a dehumidifier will cause the levels to drop from 80% to 50% after running the unit.

Adding a dehumidifier also reduces the amount of heat in the home. Since people feel warmer when they’re surrounded by humidity, removing excess moisture from the air should make you feel much more comfortable.

Overall, controlling the humidity in the basement is your best option for reducing the amount of moisture in your home. It’s also the best way to prevent structural damages and keep your property safe from water. If you live in a humid area, you might want to consider adding a larger unit to the basement.

This is a quick rundown of all the benefits you receive:

  1. Discourage mold growth
  2. Helps with asthma & allergies
  3. Promotes healthier skin
  4. Prevents corrosion of metal objects
  5. Wooden windows & door frames last longer
  6. Food stays fresh for longer
  7. Saves on energy bills (AC)
  8. Prevents mildew & smells in the home

Portable Vs Whole House Dehumidifiers for the Home

There are two main types of dehumidifiers- the portable and the whole house units. The portable models are meant to handle moisture in one room, while the whole house options are better for the basement.

The whole house models are much larger and made from stronger materials. However, the portable models are cheaply made, so they won’t last as long. Still, you can easily use a portable model on the upper floors of your home. If your bathroom often builds up moisture, it’s best to add one of these smaller dehumidifiers there.

In short, both options have their place. If you want one strictly for the basement, then you should choose the larger, whole house unit.

White Comforter Set in Basement Bedroom

People Also Ask (FAQ)

Will a dehumidifier help a flooded basement?

As you dry out your basement, you should use a unit to remove the moisture that evaporates into the air. Doing so reduces the chances that you get mold. However, it won’t lower the water levels from a flood.

How long should you run a dehumidifier in the basement?

You should run your unit for at least 12 hours each day. That way, it has enough time to remove humidity from the basement and pull it down from the upper floors. Basements are very damp, so you should run them for more extended periods. Learn about setting a dehumidifier here.


To summarize, a dehumidifier will help the rest of your home when added to the basement. You want to ensure you use a larger model so that it can run as efficiently as possible.

Last Updated on January 13, 2023

Josh M

My name is Josh and I am obsessed with the HVAC industry. I created this website to help HVAC techs of all levels get the best out of their heating & cooling systems. I have spent thousands of hours studying air conditioners, heaters and home air products so you can learn & buy with confidence. Learn more about the team here.