I have a dirt floor basement, more like a mud basement I should say.

My copper has a lot of condensation, my duct systems and sometimes even my panel box which really concerns me. The ducts and copper will soon be insulted but how can I stop this?

There’s never really a flood, I just assume hydrostatic pressure and also live two avenues from the Hudson River.

Someone once told me level the dirt out, lay plastic out and go up the wall a few feet and then pour out some sort of fine rocks? If so, which ones? Will this help? There’s a sub pump which I’m sure it would help but I doubt it would dry it out that much.

I was also going to add a concrete on to the exposed bricks all around as in the winter I see frost in some of the bricks, very few spots.

Thank for you help!

  • Frost on the bricks means the bricks are cold and there's moisture in the air, not that water is coming in in that particular spot, generally. Might be an air leak making it cold, though.
    – Ecnerwal
    Jun 8, 2020 at 15:27
  • 1
    I know what ducts and a panel box are, but what is "my copper" that has a lot of condensation on it?
    – FreeMan
    Nov 5, 2020 at 18:15

2 Answers 2


Putting plastic down would help reduce the humidity, even though it has not flooded a large amount of water is coming up through the dirt. Th show you how this would help take a trash bag and put it on the ground spread out flat , put something on the edges to hold them down and in 24 hours the bottom of the plastic will probably be wet, that moisture would have been in the air if you would not have trapped it with the plastic, by covering the entire floor it may eliminate most of the moisture leaving a sheet of plastic down and pouring a concrete floor would be the best way to seal it off but A sheet of plastic is a good start and it can be left in place if you decide to pour a flooring the future.


Two major approaches - stop it coming in (which a through, careful, quality, unbroken plastic layer will help with) and get it out, which involves ventilation or dehumidification.

For the walls, you really want plaster, not concrete, if coating the bricks with a masonry-type coating.

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