We love portable dehumidifiers for small, damp spaces like under sinks, in poorly ventilated bathrooms, and in closets. But did you know there's a very inexpensive and easy yet effective way to absorb low levels of moisture in your closet and other similar spaces? Using chalk as a makeshift ‘dehumidifier’ of sorts can actually make the difference between moisture-damaged clothes and a nice, dry closet.
Martha Stewart, famous guru of home care, recommends such a chalk dehumidifier, and suggests tying a bundle of chalk with an attractive ribbon and hanging it in the closet from a hook.
Interestingly, the Riverwalker's Stealth Survivor blog offers a similar dehumidifying tip, although this time in reference to ammo storage. The Riverwalker describes how to pound chalk into a powder and then place it in an old stocking. Tie the stocking in a knot and place it in a plastic container. Punch holes in the container and place with your ammo. When the chalk clumps or gets moist, place the chalk-filled stocking outside in sunlight to let it dry out and it's ready to re-use.
Indeed, chalk is a known dessicant, which is defined by Wikipedia as ‘a hygroscopic substance that induces or sustains a state of dryness (desiccation) in its local vicinity in a moderately well-sealed container.’ The Wikipedia article further describes that ‘because of their common use in preservation, it is usually desirable for a desiccant to be substantially chemically stable or chemically inert, and a number of useful desiccants with this property have been identified and are in common use, such as silica gel, chalk and clay-based desiccants.’
Image courtesy of Air and Water, Inc.