Often times as a homeowner, many find themselves seeking for ways to save money so they do a project themselves, they want to make their home more energy efficient, they don’t realize what they are doing is wrong, etc. Where crawl spaces are concerned, making a mistake in this area can have catastrophic repercussions both in personal safety and in the structural integrity of the home. It may not seem like there are that many things that can go wrong where the crawl space is concerned, however, there are three main mistakes that people make when considering this area of a home.
House Water Run-Off is too Close
During wet weather, gutters and drains serve as the means to keep water from saturating the foundation of your home. When gutters and drains aren’t properly placed, their water run-off flow can lead to water not only hitting the foundation, but also flooding the crawl space. Especially since this issue wouldn’t be immediately apparent, the ramifications of this, once they rear their head, are already at a crisis level. Water plaguing a crawl space can mean mold, a compromised foundation, crumbling wood, or ruined insulation. The process to right this scenario can be expensive and intensive.
Venting the Crawl Space
On its surface, this particular mistake seems completely logical. Many homeowners add air vents to their crawl space to help eliminate humidity. Aside from the fact that adding vents often times means drilling holes through the foundation which can compromise its soundness, it also can actually increase the humidity. When warm air enters the cool environment of a crawl space, the air condenses and becomes damp. This is a completely counter productive effect.
Venting Dryers into the Space
In general, dryers use airflow and heat to take the water in washed clothes, turns it into vapor, and vents it away from the clothing to yield nice, dry items. Sometimes, when creating the vent that carries the moist air away, homeowners go the easiest route. This is typically down into the crawl space instead of directly outside. Venting a dryer into a crawl space takes all of that warm, wet air and takes it directly into the nooks and crannies of a crawl space. This is the perfect breeding ground for mold, bacteria, and general nastiness that has no place beneath a home. This is also an intense fire hazard as carelessness, particularly with dryers, is responsible for over 10% of the fires that occur in the United States.
No one can blame a homeowner for wanting to take on a project themselves. Whether that’s installing your own gutters, creating a vent for your dryer, or simply wanting to make sure your crawl space stays nice a dry. Improper practices can create serious problems for a home. Don’t let yourself fall victim to these common mistakes for homeowners to make in their crawl spaces.