If you have a crawl space under your home, one of the concerns is with moisture. Moisture in the crawl space can lead to big problems if you don't address it.
Problems With Wet Crawl Spaces
A wet crawl space can lead to structural issues with your home. Wood rot can affect floorboards and joists, leading to sagging floors or even worse damage to your home's structure. If there is a lot of water, the foundation piers for the home may eventually shift and lead to even more severe damage.
Another problem with a wet crawlspace is that it can attract pests. Insects and small animals like rodents are attracted to crawlspaces when they are warm and provide a source of water. Moisture doesn't just attract animal pests. Mildew and mold growth may also set in. The spores and odors will spread into your home through the floor, where they can be both unpleasant and cause respiratory issues in some people.
Signs of Water Incursion
A crawl space should be completely dry. Crawl spaces often have dirt floors, so if you notice standing water in the crawl space or if the dirt seems damp or moist, then you have water incursion into the crawl space. Damp or moldy floorboards or supports are another sign that moisture, either from the ground or due to condensation, is getting into the crawl space.
You may also notice other issues that are a result of moisture. For example, if insects keep invading the crawl space, then chances are you are having at least some seasonal damp under the house. Moisture can get in from the ground, condensation through the floorboards, or from water runoff due to rain or snowmelt.
There are several ways to waterproof a crawl space. If water is coming in from weather-related events, then the installation of perimeter drains around the house can route this water away. For severe water buildup, from rain or from groundwater, a sump pump may also be a necessary tool to keep the crawl space dry.
For minor moisture issues and condensation, encapsulating is the best method. Special plastic sheeting is installed in the crawlspace, along with a venting system. The sheets keep moisture out while the vents ensure there is proper airflow so condensation doesn't develop and cause problems in the crawl space.
Contact a crawl space waterproofing service for more help with your crawlspace.