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Thread: Moisture/Mold in garage storage

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    Sr. User maxwell's Avatar
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    Default Moisture/Mold in garage storage

    Hey Guys, my small converted carport (think 3/4 garage/storage) here in socal is having some moisture issues and reading up on mold is almost worse than looking up a cold. FUCK, i have aids and BLACK MOLD!

    Before I go too crazy here, let me lay it out. Personal experience is helpful.

    -Never really had issues the 3.5+ years here, but this past winter in socal has been wet, and this summer more humid than most
    -Rental unit, landlord is good... but not that good. He will probably only 'patch' the issue if possible.
    -garage floor has cracked slab, doubt there is any moisture barrier underneath.
    -Outside wall definitely got wet last winter due to poor outside drainage during some crazy rain we had. Drainage since fixed. Not a current issue, but there is a couple spots of mold near the floor on this walls drywall, inside the garage.
    -earlier this week I noticed some mold forming on old sporting goods and some storage items i had in the garage.
    -no ventilation in here currently.

    well... FUCK. Threw a few things away. I think i caught it early though, most things appear fine. Just a few lost items due to some white/green looking mold that formed in spots over like the past month...

    Originally my plan was to just paint the inside of the garage with some mold/mildew paint, buy a dehumidifier (bought one today) to run and keep below 60% rh, and bin all my sensitive stuff w/silica packets to prevent ruining anything in long term storage down there. My landlord is OK with fronting the costs on materials, and im OK with doing the work... id prefer it to some cheap day labor.

    but... should I press my landlord to deal with it in a better manner or should i be good? My 2 main concerns are my stuff, and health concerns over things like toxic mold. we are paying well below market for this great place, and I dont want to give him reason to raise rent or whatever...

    Any experience here?
    MAXWELL
    BLAOWW!!

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    Mr. G Q Onyx Z32's Avatar
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    https://www.dollartree.com/The-Home-...6485/index.pro

    BUY THESE.

    They're only $1 each. Always stocked in store. I keep one in the Z all winter while it sits in the garage. In the spring the thing is full of water that it pulled from the air.



    Also the KILZ paint works great. Nothing grows on it, and I've used it in bathrooms with zero ventilation.

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    Sr. User maxwell's Avatar
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    So yeah @Onyx Z32, i've got a couple of the large 'jugs' of damp ex on order (although these are crazy cheap thanks!) I just scooped up a BNIB kenmore 50 pint dehumidifier for a song on CL, and im going to paint this weekend after using a mold spray on the affected (small) spots.

    Beyond that I got a bunch of those silica moisture packets from amazon and im going to use those in plastic bins for all my sensitive stuff.

    I guess only real concern would be; is air testing or pulling out the wall really that necessary? Its not living space and the only time im down there is to wrench on the weekends for a few hours here and there, garage door open, sunny socal day. Do you think it's overkill?

    - - - Updated - - -



    cant seem to embed this. Heres an IG photo for reference.

    - - - Updated - - -

    https://www.instagram.com/p/1EdMxcTN...y=paul.maxwell
    Last edited by maxwell; 08-30-2017 at 08:36 PM.
    MAXWELL
    BLAOWW!!

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    Climbin in ya window... travisn's Avatar
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    Not much you can do in that dungeon. It needs airflow. I'd install a fan to keep the air mixed for the dehumidifier and set it up in such a way that it drains (to the street under the garage door?) instead of filling up the bucket

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    If rents top dollar complain if its a good deal dont or im sure rent will go up eventually

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    Sr. User maxwell's Avatar
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    Ran the dehumidifier (into the 50pt bucket) last night starting at 6pm. At 645 this morning the bucket was full and the garage was at 80% RH. OOF. I will definitely need to keep it hooked up to a hose and running more often. I also have a small fan down there.

    All my stuff is binned w/silica and cedar planks (they smell so good)

    Paint this weekend.
    @Oasis24-7 our rent is about 30% below market value. Most of our friends get pretty jealous when they hear what our rent is compared to theirs. The living space in the apt is top notch, so I am OK with remedying this without making a stink.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I will add that I firmly believe its an airflow and humidity issue, and not a current leak behind a wall. Being 1/2 mile from the ocean we get a dense fog that roles in almost every night with salty ocean air. Everything outside is almost always damp in the morning. Running a dehumidifier and fan should really help a ton. *fingers crossed*
    MAXWELL
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    Climbin in ya window... travisn's Avatar
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    Maybe borrow a second dehumidifier for a while to get a handle on it?

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    Sr. User maxwell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by travisn View Post
    Maybe borrow a second dehumidifier for a while to get a handle on it?
    When it runs it keeps the RH down in the 40's/50's pretty easily. Its a small space. It probably shut off early am when full... and with the morning fog it just got humid in there again.

    I'll definitely monitor it over the next few days. I also bought a cheap analog humidity gauge to keep opposite the dehumidifier and check.
    MAXWELL
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    Climbin in ya window... travisn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maxwell View Post
    When it runs it keeps the RH down in the 40's/50's pretty easily. Its a small space. It probably shut off early am when full... and with the morning fog it just got humid in there again.

    I'll definitely monitor it over the next few days. I also bought a cheap analog humidity gauge to keep opposite the dehumidifier and check.
    the 7.99 one on amazon? Some of the reviews said it was off a bit on the RH so I bought a digital one for the same price.

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    Sr. User maxwell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by travisn View Post
    the 7.99 one on amazon? Some of the reviews said it was off a bit on the RH so I bought a digital one for the same price.

    Yah, 7.99 and has temp/rh. Analog.

    You in a similar situation?
    MAXWELL
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    Climbin in ya window... travisn's Avatar
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    Not really, just bought a house (in NY, btw) and the dehumidifier is an older one with 'more humid' and 'less humid' on the dial, so I want to know where I'm at as to avoid pulling moisture through the walls.

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    Sr. User maxwell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by travisn View Post
    Not really, just bought a house (in NY, btw) and the dehumidifier is an older one with 'more humid' and 'less humid' on the dial, so I want to know where I'm at as to avoid pulling moisture through the walls.
    Congrats. Are you still in SoCal in any capacity?


    "as to avoid pulling moisture through the walls."

    Can you clarify on this? Like, you dont want to go too dry? Based on my reading i'd like to keep things at 45-50%, which is nice that the Fridgidaire unit lets me set specifically.
    MAXWELL
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    Climbin in ya window... travisn's Avatar
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    Nah, moved back 6/1.

    And yea, everything wants to maintain equilibrium so if there is too much of a gradient the moisture will go towards the dry side. Not that big of a deal for above ground structures. I've never seen it happen but it makes sense.

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    Sr. User maxwell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by travisn View Post
    Nah, moved back 6/1.

    And yea, everything wants to maintain equilibrium so if there is too much of a gradient the moisture will go towards the dry side. Not that big of a deal for above ground structures. I've never seen it happen but it makes sense.
    Got it, thanks!

    Oh, and congrats. My bad on never meeting up out here, that's on me. Too busy, too much travel!
    MAXWELL
    BLAOWW!!