Basements are easy to monitor since it is a space big enough to either consider finishing off so it's another living space or at least walk around and see if things have cracked, moisture is collecting, or even if you just smell something damp. On the other hand, crawlspaces are almost part of the outside of your house and so it can be difficult to monitor. That doesn't mean you can ignore this space though!
Of the many skills we need to teach our kids, DIY is one of those things that can help us to maintain our home and not rely on contractors where possible, but there are parts of the home that sometimes require a bit more forethought and attention. A very good example is the crawl space.
There are a few different types of crawlspaces and chances are that you have at least one of them. This includes the closed in space below your deck or patio as well as the space for instance under your front porch. However, it can also be built under your home as part of the foundation. This is particularly common in manufactured homes.
A crawl space is built in homes as an alternative to basements and lifts the house off the ground. Crawl spaces are sometimes neglected, especially if you let moisture and pests attack them. But here are a few things to do if you want to look after your crawl space properly.
Keep Moisture Away
Regardless of your property, the ground below your home will contain a significant amount of moisture. In a crawl space, the moisture can collect into water droplets on the wood above the crawl space, resulting in mold and mildew. There are many ways you can keep your crawl space dry. Using waterproofing contractors can ensure that you cover a lot of components, for example, by installing water gutters on the edges of the roof, or landscaping the soil around the crawl space, which drains water away from the home. You could also use dehumidifiers or fans to dry out an already wet area.
Seal Openings and Vents
Many crawl spaces are ventilated, but it has proven to be more harmful to properties in recent years because they allow pests, air, and water into them. It's critical to make sure that you use vent covers or doors to seal the crawl space while also looking out for cracks or openings in the walls because if they are left unchecked, the cracks will expand and make for a very weakened infrastructure, resulting in costly repairs.
As obvious as it sounds, it's critical to get into the habit of inspecting the crawl space. It's not always easy to do, but if you are too big to get into the crawl space yourself, you may want to be a bit more creative in how you inspect it. For example, you may want to invest in a remote control camera, and attach it to a rope, and then if you have control over it, you can get a full 360-degree view of the space. Of course, this might also be something you could ask a child to help you with, but you must make sure that they are doing it safely!
Look at the External Causes of Moisture
It is not just about what goes on inside the crawl space, but about the exterior as well. Landscaping is one of those issues that can have an impact, for example, how the backyard slopes, because if it slopes a certain way, resulting in the crawl space being soaked constantly, you may want to attend to this landscaping issue so the yard slopes away from the home, resulting in no rainwater flowing back into the crawl space.
A crawl space is something that we don't always consider, but it is one of the essential foundations of your home, so ensure that you look after it properly.