Crawl space dryness seems like a holy grail for many homeowners. Some struggle with crawl space moisture and mold almost the entire year. And this winter the same script can play out. Water gets into the crawl space through cracks, vents, or underground, damages anything in the area, and raises the humidity levels. After a few days, mold starts growing and the air turns acrid.
If you’re having a problem controlling moisture or are afraid snowmelt could damage the crawl space this winter, here is what you need to beat them back and why it’s important to waterproof your crawl space.
1. Get vent covers
As long as the crawl space stays open, outside air will keep flowing in and hurt the crawl space. You will also have little control over what happens down there. Insects and pests escaping the winter cold will have unfettered access to the crawl space. Mold and mildew will also grow and thrive. To beat back the moisture and discourage mold and pests, cover the vents. Our experts can install durable plastic covers over the vents to block outside air. Installation takes less than an hour.
2. Install a crawl space drains
Snowmelt and rain in Colorado Springs, CO, are two threats you can’t afford to overlook. They can inundate the crawl space floor and turn it into a water park. You can avoid this scenario by installing drains in the crawl space. Once in place, these systems will arrest water and redirect it to a sump pump before it causes substantial damage. We can help you install a clog-free and durable system that’s also compatible with your sump pump and other waterproofing solutions.
3. Install a sump pump
Whether from torrential rains or snowmelt, floodwaters have to go outside before they wreak havoc on your home. The best antidote is a crawl space sump pump. This device ejects water that’s coming into the crawl space before it causes water damage. We advise you to pair it with your crawl space drain.
4. Insulate the crawl space
Since the crawl space affects the conditions indoors, it has to be insulated. We recommend a rigid, waterproof foam board. Insulation helps prevent heat loss. Without this material, you will find yourself heating your home for hours. This could lead to higher utility costs.
5. Encapsulate the crawl space
You need to seal up the crawl space tightly over winter to stop outside air, moisture, and water from damaging this space. Typical encapsulation entails covering the floors and walls with a 20-mil vapor barrier. The material goes around joists and beams and is taped down at the seams. What this does is isolate the crawl space from the outside. Water, moist air, pests, and insects are all locked out. This way, the crawl space stays dry, healthy, and energy-efficient during cold winter.
6. Dehumidify the crawl space
Sealing up the crawl space won’t eliminate internal moisture. You need to control the moisture levels for a drier, healthier home. The best way to dry out the air is to install a dehumidifier. As well as removing moisture from the air, the dehumidifier can also filter the air, removing dust, and pollutants. If you need help with the sizing and installation, talk to crawl space experts.
7. Improve exterior drainage
The grading of your yard also determines whether you’ll have water problems in winter or not. Poor grading means one thing: Water from the roof or melting snow will flow towards the crawl space and not outside. Ideally, the ground should slope by six inches for every 10 feet. Ask your landscaper to help you re-grade this area. Don’t forget your gutters and downspouts. Without these, water from the roof will end up on your perimeter and flow to the crawl space.
Be sure to request a free crawl space waterproofing inspection and quote from Complete Basement Systems. We have licensed and experienced technicians who can waterproof this space. Our experts will check the condition of your crawl space, perform any necessary repairs, and waterproof it so winter water and moisture won’t trouble you.