While areas like Colorado Springs, CO, aren’t as humid as other parts of the country, elevated levels of humidity still have the potential to cause problems with damage and mold growth.
The area of your house that is most prone to mold growth is your crawl space. While this type of foundation is extremely popular among homeowners because it allows them to build a home on uneven terrain and is much cheaper than a basement, it has its downsides. A crawl space is dark and humid, which makes it an ideal environment for mold growth.
Just like plants, mold has cells. However, it cannot make its own food through photosynthesis and it cannot feed without moisture. Furthermore, fungus reproduces by releasing airborne spores. These can spread quickly through space, so if your crawl space is infested with mold, soon your entire home could be as well.
Apart from moisture, mold also needs food to thrive. It loves to feed on high cellulose materials, such as wood and dirt. Both can be easily found in most crawl spaces.
So, what makes mold growth so problematic? Although a mold presence in your home won’t necessarily cause health problems, it has the potential to make you sick. Inhaling airborne mold spores or even touching mold can trigger allergy-related symptoms such as runny nose, congestion, eye irritation, sneezing, coughing, sore throat, skin rash, headache, as well as lung irritation. Those who have medical conditions such as allergies, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder, or a weak immune system are more at risk of developing complications.
Homeowners with asthma need to be careful around mold since it can easily trigger an attack.
Causes of High Humidity Levels in a Crawl Space
Unfortunately, living in a humid area can make your home prone to mold growth. However, there are several other reasons your crawl space could have a moisture problem. Let’s check them out.
Water accumulation: If your drainage system is malfunctioning or you have a plumbing leak, your crawl space will end up with a lot of standing water in it. This water can increase humidity levels and cause mold growth. In addition, water damage can compromise your foundation and make it weak, so you need to address this problem as quickly as possible.
Moisture from the soil: Most crawl spaces have dirt floors. During heavy rains in Colorado Springs, CO, the soil becomes oversaturated. When this moisture begins to evaporate, it will increase humidity levels in the crawl space. Luckily, with encapsulation, you can prevent this from happening.
Humid air coming in through the vents: Several decades ago, it was thought that crawl space vents were a great solution against humidity. It was thought that they allowed outside air to circulate through the crawl space and keep it dry. However, contractors soon realized that these vents were letting moisture-laden air in, which then caused various problems.
Preventing Crawl Space Mold
If you have been at war with mold for some time, having a mold-free crawl space in a humid area may seem like mission impossible. Although keeping your foundation dry and clean is not the easiest task, it is far from impossible. With these crawl space repair and encapsulation solutions, you can solve your mold problems once and for all.
By covering your crawl space with a vapor barrier, you can stop moisture from passing through your floors and porous concrete walls. Our CrawlSeal™ Crawl Space Vapor Barrier is a durable, bright white crawl space liner that will instantly turn your dirty crawl space into a clean, functional area ideal for storage. It comes with a longtime warranty against rips and tears, so it will serve you for many years. It features a mold-resistant additive, so it won’t support mold growth on its surface.
Not only does encapsulation prevent mold growth but it also helps you save money on utilities, keeps pests at bay, seals away odors, and increases home value. By sealing your crawl space, you keep the outside humid air out of your crawl space and out of your home.
With our ExTremeBloc™ Crawl Space Wall Insulation, you can easily seal your walls from outside humidity infiltration. This type of insulation features a built-in radiant heat barrier surface. Since it has closed cells, it won’t soak up moisture like other insulation types.
A Drainage System
A crawl space drainage system will collect water from the soil and prevent it from entering your crawl space. It will direct excess water to a crawl space and then away from your home where it cannot cause any damage. Since your crawl space will remain dry, it will be much less prone to mold growth.
A Sump Pump
A sump pump is the heart of the waterproofing system and it can prevent crawl space flooding. This device can quickly pump out substantial amounts of water and keep your foundation dry. It sits in a sump pit, a basin in the ground that is in charge of collecting water that accumulates beneath your home.
With these waterproofing measures, you can keep humidity levels in your crawl space under control. When your crawl space is encapsulated, insulated, and properly drained, you can install a dehumidifier, which is the last piece of the puzzle. This appliance will regulate humidity levels in your crawl space and always keep them under control.
For expert help with crawl space repair and encapsulation, don’t hesitate to reach out to Complete Basement Systems to schedule a free inspection.