If you have a crawl space, you probably know that it’s a bit tougher to care for than the rest of your property. Given the size of the space, it can be hard to get into it with the appropriate tools and cleaning supplies needed to care for it. Many people are tempted to let their crawlspace be because it’s so difficult to care for, but this isn’t the best idea seeing as your crawlspace is an integral part of your home’s foundation and can contribute to energy usage in the home as well as the health of you and your family.
The following will explore a few things that you can do to help properly care for your crawlspace.
Why Does It Matter?
Moisture, heat loss, and pests can all cause serious problems for your home’s integrity. Beyond this, as much as 40% of the air in your home originates within your crawlspace, meaning that mold and mildew can pose serious threats to your household. Finally, poor insulation and other factors in your crawlspace can cause loss of heat or cool air, meaning your utility costs can dramatically increase.
One of the most important things you can do maintenance-wise in regards to your crawlspace is by regularly checking for signs of moisture. Moisture can allow mold and other bacteria to grow, it can attract pests, and it can result in the swelling and warping of your home, damaging the structural integrity. Two common solutions to moisture discoveries are installing a vapor barrier or encapsulating your crawl space. Moisture should never be ignored because of all the impacts it can have.
While it first might not seem related to your crawlspace maintenance, it’s important to pay attention to your energy usage. If you find your energy bill exorbitant or notice cool air or hot air drafts in your crawlspace area or floors, you might have an energy loss problem. The solution to this problem revolves around improving the insulation of your crawlspace.
Your preference for insulation material will depend on cost, your climate, and any environmental concerns you might have. If you don’t know what type of insulation is best for your climate, it’s a good idea to speak to a local contractor; they’ll be able to tell you what sort of insulation is most effective given the local terrain.
Indicators Of Pests
Regularly look for signs of pests in your crawlspace. Things like droppings and nests can indicate that you have critters in the area. Often proper sealing and insulation can help reduce the risk of pests getting in. Proper traps can help get rid of pests you have, but some pest problems might require professional intervention depending on how extensive the issue is. Pests can damage electrical wiring, increase the chances of disease in your home and leave you with nasty smells.
The above list should give you an idea of a few practical ways you can maintain your crawlspace, as well as an understanding of why this is important. Many of the above steps can be completed on your own, but of course, if there are tasks you’re not comfortable with, seek out help.