How Your Crawl Space Is Impacting Your Home
Some homes are built over a crawl space. And for most homeowners, this space is often “out of sight, out of mind.”
Yet if you’ve ever had a reason to head down into your crawl space, you might be surprised at what you find. People often find moisture, rot, even biological growth forming in many places underneath their homes. And this can impact your living arrangements.
Poor Air Quality
If you don’t check in on your crawl space on a regular basis, moisture can easily build. Because crawl spaces are conditioned, temperatures can vary widely. And if it wasn’t installed correctly with items like vapor barriers, moisture can settle in and create havoc underneath your home. Rot can develop on wooden beams. Biological growth can start releasing toxins. And all of that can seep through your floorboards and into your home.
If your crawl space has problems, so does your air quality. Because the crawl space is the foundation of your home, everything that happens in your crawl space also impacts the air you breathe. If you’ve noticed a member of your family has increased sensitivity to dust or has developed allergic reactions, it may be in response to toxins seeping up from your crawl space.
High Energy Bills
In a lot of cases, crawl spaces aren’t properly insulated. That means a significant amount of your conditioned air may be escaping from your home. Cold air can easily break through the barrier and settle into your crawl space. Hot air rises, which means as you run your furnace, the heat will quickly move upwards, away from the colder air settling near the base of your home. If your energy bills have been rising, it may be from an ever-growing problem in your crawl space.
When moisture settles in, it slowly begins to rot away wood. The wooden beams that give your home strength can be compromised, putting your home at risk. In some cases, crawl spaces have flooded and have remained with high levels of water for long periods of time, unbeknown to the homeowner. Significant structural damage can occur quickly in these conditions.
The best way to prevent problems before they happen is to check your crawl space regularly. If it doesn’t have proper levels of insulation, consider improving the conditions and creating a warmer foundation for your home.