Your house’s Crawl Space is often overlooked, but it is an important part of maintaining a healthy home and foundation.
Here in St. Louis, there are a lot of houses that have a crawl space. Like any other part of your home, they require regular maintenance to ensure they are functional.
Unlike your landscape, foundation concrete or driveway, however, crawl spaces are tucked away from the light of day. This makes it very easy for homeowners to overlook the importance of a crawl space in their home. Typical crawl spaces are home to essential house features, including foundation piers and electrical switchboards. If these areas are not inspected regularly, they can develop serious problems for homeowners.
A crawl space is a very unwelcoming section. Instead of going in yourself, it is often best to consult with a professional, such as the Foundation Doctor of St. Louis, to dive in an determine your crawl space’s health.
Here are a few of the things we look for during a crawl space inspection:
It may seem like air flowing through your crawl space could be a good thing. In fact, the opposite is true. If there is air passing through the area, it carries a ton of risk with it. During the more humid months, especially here in Missouri, outside hair can carry moisture into your home.
When your home is invaded by unwanted moisture, it increases your chance of getting mold in your basement. A foundation professional can identify problem areas and provide simple solutions to keep the moisture out.
After they examine the ventilation, professionals will also test the moisture levels themselves. In addition to outside air ventilation, your soil can collect water in a lot of other ways. Natural water movement through the soil or plumbing leaks are also big contributors to moist soil.
Excessive soil moisture creates multiple problems such as mold growth, wood rot, and corrosion of metal fasteners.
Most professionals will assess the moisture levels with their fingertips. If they believe there is a problem, they can do a follow-up with an electronic moisture meter to determine the precise level of wetness. After that, they can recommend a variety of options that can help resolve this issue and protect your home.
Damaged Masonry or Piers
The foundation holding your home up undergoes a lot of strain throughout the years. When you get an inspection of your crawl space, a foundation doctor will determine if the masonry and piering system under your home are in good condition.
This includes identifying temporary fixes that were installed at one point but were meant to be replaced. Things like concrete blocks or wood supports that sit below floor framing are usually there because of foundation issues. When they were installed, they were meant to be a quick fix. A properly trained Foundation Doctor will identify these issues and recommend a plan of action.
Pets & Insects
Finally, one of the biggest threats to your crawl space is the infestation of pests and insects you don’t want there. A professional inspection combs the area for things such as mice, bugs and, of course, termites.
If there is an infestation problem, we are happy to apply our expertise as best we can, or recommend a pest control business if it is beyond our scope. We also offer repair services to any areas that were affected.
There are plenty of signs that your crawl space needs attention, such as:
- Drywall cracks on the interior
- Uneven floors
- Foul odors
- Increased allergy symptoms
- Cold floors above crawl space areas
- Visible mold or moldy smell
- Rotting wood
- Standing water or wet areas in the crawl space
- Open crawl space vents
If you are experiencing any of these urgent problems, call the Foundation Doctor today. We service the greater St. Louis area and deliver the best foundation consultation in town.