When you notice crawl space moisture in your home, the first thing that comes to mind is whether it is a normal occurrence in Orlando, FL, homes. After all, the ground gets wet and dry throughout the year as weather patterns change. Although having a damp crawl space is a normal occurrence in some cases, this may be a sign of other, bigger problems.
What does it mean when a crawl space is damp?
A damp crawl space can mean water vapor is seeping through your foundation. If not mitigated, this seepage can weaken the concrete, leaving it more susceptible to many foundation problems like cracks, flaking, or even crumbling.
Sometimes, crawl space moisture may be a sign of groundwater around the foundation. Pooling water seeps through the foundation concrete or leaks through tiny foundation cracks, causing a damp crawl space. In such a case, you may need to consider installing interior drainage.
When should you worry?
If you notice the following issues within your crawl space or home, you need to act fast.
- Mold and mildew
The growth of mold and mildew is a sign that there is a moisture issue in your crawl space that needs to be addressed immediately. A damp crawl space provides a favorable environment for mold and mildew to spread and become an even bigger problem if not addressed quickly.
- Pest infestation
Dark and moist areas like the crawl space provide the perfect breeding grounds for pests and insects. If you notice more spiders, roaches, and rodents in your home, this is a sure sign that your crawl space is having problems. Although using insecticides or calling pest control can mitigate this problem, chances are that the problem could return if you do not fix the issue in your crawl space.
- Damp air
If the moisture levels in your crawl space rise, the air automatically becomes damp and heavy. Since air is not just limited to the affected area, it will travel to all other areas at home. As such, it is important to have the problem repaired immediately to avoid health problems in the future.
- Higher electricity bills
A damp crawl space can cause higher electricity bills. A poorly insulated crawl space forces your AC and furnace to work harder, increasing your electricity bills.
- Presence of water
If there is a pool of water in your crawl space, this is a sign of a major problem that needs to be fixed before it causes damage to your home. Leaving the water to sit for a long time can lead to other issues like a weakened foundation, mold, and mildew.
How to Prevent Crawl Space Moisture
As a homeowner, your goal should be to keep the crawl space as dry as possible, or at the very least, keep the humidity levels at 55% or less. After all, a dry crawl space is far superior and better for the integrity of your home’s structure. Hence, it is important that you take precautionary measures to prevent crawl space moisture.
- Install a moisture and vapor barrier
Encapsulating your crawl space with a moisture and vapor barrier prevents excess moisture from getting into this area under your home. It ensures the space remains dry, comfortable, and free from mold and mildew for a long time.
- Install a dehumidifier
A dehumidifier effectively wrings moisture out of your crawl space, preventing the growth of mold. This also helps to keep everything in the area dry, removes any musty smells, and makes the area less hospitable for pests.
Do not let a damp crawl space destroy the integrity of your house. If you already have a damp crawl space, getting the moisture out should be the first step to fixing the problem.
Get in touch with your trusted local crawl space company. Alpha Foundations will provide you with a free crawl space inspection and waterproofing quote, they will offer you the right solution to stop recurring moisture issues.