Crawl spaces help with air circulation in your home. They are also a necessity in areas where unstable clays or high water tables prevent the use of traditional basements. Unfortunately, a crawl space can also trap moisture which can create problems with mold. The following tips can help to prevent crawl space issues.
Add A Moisture Barrier
To avoid moisture, and the problems associated with it, homeowners can install a barrier in their crawl space. These barriers are made from thick plastic (usually around 6 mm in thickness) that is spread across the entire compartment. This sheeting helps to prevent moisture build-up from humid conditions.
Ventillation Can Help
Another solution to eliminate or prevent issues with mold is to install proper ventilation. Many crawl spaces use passive venting ducts to promote air movement. Another option to consider is the use of fans to ventilate the space. Sensors can be added that will automatically turn the fans on and off when needed.
Routine Inspections Make A Difference
Moisture damage and mold can’t be ignored. These problems won’t go away on their own and need to be identified as soon as possible. If you rarely enter the crawl space area, it may be time to take a look. This can be critical after local flooding and heavy rains also.
Examine Closed Or Encased Crawl Spaces As Well
It is also necessary to perform inspections of crawl spaces that are protected from moisture. Mold can still grow under the plastic sheeting used as a blocker and holes or tears in the fabric may introduce the mold into your home. Also, examine the foundation and subflooring areas.
Eliminate Spots Where Water Can Gather
Small holes and indentations in the dirt can hold standing water. This can increase the humidity in your crawl space if that standing water cannot drain. Fill in holes so that any barriers placed over them can’t collect water pools. Another trick is to place a layer of sand to absorb standing water.
Drain Water Away From The Foundation
Gutters and downspouts can carry a lot of water during a rainstorm. That water can make its way into your crawl space through cracks in the wall as well as oversaturated soil. Position downspouts so they drain away from the house to deter water from entering the crawl space.
With a bit of work and routine maintenance, your home’s crawl space can stay dry enough to avoid building up water condensation. This prevents water damage as well as eliminates potential breeding grounds for mold. Protected crawl spaces provide better air quality and insulation for the house.