When was the last time you cleaned your crawl space? Most homeowners rarely, if ever, clean their crawl space. It’s not until a problem arises when they realize the importance of keeping it clean. Neglecting to clean your crawl space increases the risk of health problems like allergies and respiratory issues as well as structural damage to your home.
#1) Inspect the Insulation
After entering your crawl space, check to see if any insulation is missing or falling down. According to Huffington Post, worn insulation forces a home’s heating system to work overtime during winter. If your crawl space isn’t properly insulated, warm air inside your home will escape to the crawl space below, thus raising your power bill.
#2) Inspect for Pests
You should also use this opportunity to inspect your crawl space for pests. From spiders and cockroaches to mice and raccoons, common pests often seek refuge in this uninhabited space. Simply turning a blind eye to pests living in your crawl space can lead to serious problems. So, look for signs of an infestation like insect shells and rodent droppings. If you believe your crawl space is infested with pests, you should remove them as soon as possible to protect your home from damage.
#3) Install a Dehumidifier
Mold is a common problem in crawl spaces. When the soil releases moisture, that moisture becomes trapped in the crawl space and subsequently creates the perfect breeding grounds for mold. As explained by ABC News, certain types of mold produce a toxic compound known as mycotoxin that may cause illness individuals exposed to it. Furthermore, statistics show that roughly one in three people are allergic to mold.
Installing a dehumidifier is a simple and effective way to keep your crawl space dry and mold free. When activated, it will extract moisture from the air, either storing the moisture in a tank or dispensing it through a hose.
#4) Cover the Ground
In addition to using a dehumidifier, you can also protect your crawl space from moisture by covering the dirt with a waterproof membrane. Also known as a vapor barrier, it prevents water from rising out of the soil and into your crawl space.
Even if your home is pristine and well kept, your crawl space could be a different story. Thankfully, you can keep this are clean by following a few simple steps.