How Moisture in Crawl Spaces Can Damage Your Health and Your Home
For most homeowners, the crawl space isn't something that is given special attention. For the majority of homeowners, the crawl space only matters when the electrician or plumber needs to access the area. However, treating the crawl space with an out of sight, out of mind mentality can be a dangerous mistake. Allowing moisture into the crawl space can damage your home and your health.
One of the most immediate threats caused moisture in crawl spaces is the potential for mold and mildew to develop. It doesn't take a lot of moisture or a lot of time for this to happen and it can have immediate adverse effects on the building's occupants. Even if you aren't sticking your head into the crawl space and deeply inhaling, mold and mildew can affect the air quality of the entire home. It's estimated that 40 percent of the air in a home goes through the crawl space.
The dangerous mycotoxins that mold and mildew can release into the air can cause an immune response that many people assume are the result of dust sensitivity or an allergic reaction. However, if the problem is mold and mildew in the crawlspace, all the dusting in the world isn't going to solve the allergy problems. Furthermore, moisture-filled crawl spaces are an inviting environment for certain kinds of pests and rodents, which brings another level of potential health hazards. These issues are why it's essential to have an air quality check for your home and to make changes that can improve air quality.
The adverse health effects are bad enough, but damp and moist crawl spaces can also damage a structure. If there is enough moisture, it can form drops of water that flow to other parts of the home. For example, if some of the moisture from the crawl space consistently seeps through, it can cause problems with the sub-flooring. Similarly, any moisture that's allowed to accumulate around the frame of the building can severely weaken support beams. This damage can even include the foundation of the home. Having your crawl space inspected can save you a lot of money in costly repairs to the house and foundation.
Moisture in crawlspaces can be an even more significant concern for older homes. Though building science has changed a lot during the past two decades, many homes are built based on coding standards that are out of date. These factors are why most homes built with crawlspaces have vents spaced throughout the perimeter. The problem is that these vents can allow moist and humid air to infiltrate the crawlspace. Once there, the moisture can lead to issues mentioned above.
Many things can be done to prevent moisture and dampness in crawl spaces from becoming a problem. Volunteer Home Services can install items like a crawlspace liner, a dehumidifier, or even a crawl space drainage system if necessary. Taking these steps can prevent costly repairs and significantly improve the overall air quality of your home.
If you’re looking for an expert in crawlspace moisture, water, and air quality management in Hamilton County and the Greater Chattanooga Metro area, consider Volunteer Home Services. Volunteer Home Services is owned and operated by a Certified Crawlspace Encapsulation Specialist with over a decade of experience in foundation repair, waterproofing, and crawlspace encapsulation experience.
To learn more about the ways Volunteer Home Services can help with a wide range of home repair issues, visit our website or call us at 423-682-0260 to schedule an appointment.