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Question DetailsAsked on 3/2/2014

My basement has wooden walls. Lately I started seeing football like white shapes starting appearing.

My wooden wall is unfinished wood. Is this sign of moisture in the basement. These shapes are appearing few centimeters apart. What is the real issue?
I can share the picture if you email me at Kapil.sharma@gmail.com

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10 Answers

Voted Best Answer
3
Votes

Where is the home located, what is the exterior wall construction and type, how is the space heated?


It could be a whole host of different scenarios that would generate that result. It is nearly impossible to tell but I would say that most basement moisture problems are a result of bulk moisture intrusion or condensation issues.


Given the deep and hard winter this year, it could be a condensation issue that hadn't previously been shown.



Answered 3 years ago by WoWHomeSolutions

0
Votes

I live in Nj and movEd to this 30 year old house last summer. I have humidifier attached to the forced air heating. I have increased the humidifier level recently. My basement walls are insulated. Full basement has unfinished wood walls and book cases are also their in one of the walls. I do see this pattern on the book case doors.

I have not seen these before.

What should I do so that these white football shaped marking go away. There 3 inch by inch and some timea overlapping at a regular interval.


is this lot of moisture In the basement?

basement is a concrete and front part of the house is concrete

Answered 3 years ago by Kapil

1
Vote

Answered 3 years ago by Kapil

0
Votes

Exterior wall is concrete but other walls is normal one. See another picture

Answered 3 years ago by Kapil

3
Votes

Those are splices in the wood and are not as big a deal as them showing up now.


What is the humidity level in the home right now? Given the cold snap in most of the country, adding extra humidity into the home is not advisable in many situations as customers go a bit over the top and create condensation issues at foundation walls and rim joists.

Answered 3 years ago by Davidhughes

3
Votes

Those are imperfection repairs. Nothing to worry about specifically but I am worried about the potentially high moisture in the home.

Answered 3 years ago by WoWHomeSolutions

2
Votes

1) Those are wood plugs machine glued into the veneer layer when the plywood is made - to replace worm holes, burned spots, cracks, or loose knots (the most common reason) to improve the wood integrity and allow them to make functional use of trees with defects in them that would otherwise disqualify the wood from most uses. Their presence is of no import because they are basically as good or better material than the surrounding veneer, unless you are trying to create a nice finished appearance in which case a higher grade of plywood would be used that does not have these type of flaws or repairs. What you have there looks like cedar T-111 sheathing (wood siding) in the first picture showing one plug closeup, and the one with all the plugs looks like it is a construction grade sheathing - what would normally be used for roof sheathing and subflooring, for instance.

2) I am surprised you never noticed them - evidently standing out more against the damper stain made them noticeable to you. The darker greenish zone to the right of the photo with a lot of plugs in it looks like a potential wet area, but could also be just a spot which got water stained during construction. Could be due to excessive interior humidity, or due to water wicking through the foundation, causing the wood to darken with moisture.

3) As other comment said - cut back on the humidity and see if dampness goes away. generally, basements need dehumidifying, not added humidity, because added humidity tends to condense in the cooler basement air, and especially on cold foundation walls.

4) If the plywood is not wet to the touch, does not "ooze" or "bleed" moisture if you hit it with a hammer or stick a screwdriver point into some obscure area, and does not start showing mildew or mold, reducing humidity will probably solve the issue. If damp areas or darkening spreads or starts molding, then time to start looking at whether moisture is coming through from behind the wall.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

1
Vote

Thanks every one for the answers. I could not sleep last night as I was thinking that aliens are making these shapes all over my basement :). I searched yesterday all over the google and could not find any answers. You guys are real experts and I am satisfied that I need a dehumidifier and I have also switched off humidifier on my ac now

Answered 3 years ago by Kapil

3
Votes

Actually, those ARE alien eggs - remember the ones in Alien ? But then, we won't tell you that, because all bloggers are aliens, right ?

I would hold off on buying a dehumidifier with its continuing electric cost - if you have not noticed this issue before now, maybe turning off the humidifier in the basement will solve it. For about $10-15 on Amazon or box stores you can buy a dial-type humidity gage, or for about $20-30 a digital one with a programmable high humidity alarm that you could put down there. If your humidity is below 50% you are probably OK - 55-60% is where mold really starts taking off, so 35-45% is generally the "recommended" humidity level in a home or storage area.

IF the gage does not show a dropoff in humidity in a few days with the humidifier off, THEN you can still get a dehumidifier.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

0
Votes

I always think of them as "little footballs"


Ace Ventura reference.


Answered 3 years ago by Davidhughes

0
Votes

OK David - now you REALLY freaked me out - now I am going to start losing sleep.
I was thinking just normal cute little aliens like the one that cuddled up to Sigourney Weaver, but you are getting WAYYYYY out there in the freaky zone now.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD




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