Does your home have a crawl space? These small areas below homes can serve a wide range of purposes. One is that they get your home off the ground, minimizing your home's exposure to bugs and ground moisture. The crawl space also provides room for things like duct work, plumbing, sump pumps, and other devices that are critical to your home's upkeep. Many builders will opt for a crawl space instead of a basement because the crawl space is a more affordable route.
A crawl space can create problems, though. This is especially true in humid climates. Moisture can seep into the crawl space foundation through the surrounding ground. Since the crawl space is a small, enclosed area, the moist air accumulates and develops mold, mildew, and other troublesome problems. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to reduce moisture in the crawl space. Below are three solutions to consider:
Connect it to your air conditioning. One step that may seem obvious is to connect the crawl space to your air conditioning system. After all, your HVAC system pulls warm, moist air from your home and replaces it with dry, cool air. However, there are issues with this strategy. One is that there may be times during the year in which you don't run your air conditioner. Your crawl space is still vulnerable to moisture in the spring and fall even if you aren't using air conditioning. Also, depending on the placement of the duct and the vent, there's no guarantee your air conditioner will pull all the moist air from the crawl space.
Use an exhaust fan. Another strategy is to install an exhaust fan in your crawl space to pump air to the outside. The fan pulls air from the crawl space and pumps it outdoors. There are many companies that offer this as a crawl space solution. It could be effective, depending on the size of the fan and the crawl space. However, if the fan isn't large enough, it won't pull all the air. You could still have a moisture issue even after installing an exhaust system.
Encapsulate and dehumidify. The most effective strategy involves two steps. The first is to encapsulate your crawl space. An encapsulation company installs a barrier, usually a plastic sheet, around the inside of the crawl space. The barrier covers the walls, floors, and all other potential entry points for moisture. It essentially blocks moist air from entering the space. The second step is to add a dehumidifier, which eliminates any moisture that is already present and additional moisture that makes its way past the barrier.
Ready to eliminate moisture in your crawl space? Talk to a crawl space encapsulation company in your area. They can evaluate your crawl space and offer a recommended strategy.Share