Are Dirt Crawlspaces Bad?

While your home’s living spaces are generally dry, it’s easy for the earth beneath your home to get wet and damp, especially after a heavy rain. If you’re wondering “what is a crawlspace?” and why do houses have crawlspaces, they are meant to help protect your home against this moisture, acting as a buffer zone. Over the years, crawlspaces have also been used for the placement of piping, cables, and ductwork, but it’s not as great as it may seem. On its own, a dirt crawlspace can actually be very vulnerable to persistent moisture, and it can even become a place for standing water to collect and pool.

Along with potentially becoming a miniature swamp, your dirt crawlspace can become a haven for mold and pests, and the moisture can do lasting damage to your wooden structures. So, what is the purpose of having a crawlspace at all? It doesn’t have to be an inconvenience—it can be a great asset and add value to your home. But the first important step is to get your crawlspace dry and to keep it dry. Let’s take a dive into how crawlspace encapsulation can make a dirt crawlspace very worth having…

Crawlspace Encapsulation: Vapor Barrier

For dirt crawlspaces, the first step to preparing your crawlspace and keeping it dry will likely involve what’s called crawlspace encapsulation. With the use of a heavy-duty vapor barrier, the moisture from your dirt floor will be blocked off from your crawlspace and the living spaces of your home. This vapor barrier will be used to line both your floors, walls, and columns, ensuring that moisture has no way in.

Crawlspace Encapsulation: Installing a Sump Pump

Another key element of a crawlspace encapsulation system is a sump pump. A crawlspace sump pump will help push any water that collects in the sump pit out and away from the house. Groundwater will make its way to the sump pit via drainage channels that can be installed along your crawlspace’s perimeter walls. We would recommend having a battery backup for your sump pump to ensure proper operations, even during a power outage.

Crawlspace Encapsulation: Dehumidifier

A heavy-duty dehumidifier may be necessary, especially if your crawlspace has been exposed to a lot of moisture problems over a long time. Fortunately, ’58 Foundations & Waterproofing offers a heavy-duty dehumidifier that will make sure your crawlspace is made free of humidity. When coupled with the rest of our crawlspace encapsulation system, your crawlspace will be safe, dry, and very useable.

Crawlspace Encapsulation: Crawlspace Vent Sealing

Some crawlspaces have vents that were originally designed to let crawlspace air out. However, the real result is that outside air gets into the crawlspace, affecting the humidity and temperature of the crawlspace. This incoming air in turn influences all that is within the crawlspace, such as belongings, equipment, and water pipes. When crawlspace vents are left open, the moisture within your crawlspace can draw all manner of pests looking for a dark and damp place to hide, hibernate, or breed. Having your crawlspace vents sealed will prevent outside humidity and temperatures from invading your crawlspace, allowing you to better maintain a consistent climate within.

A Dirt Crawlspace Can Be Made Good!

With a ’58 Foundations & Waterproofing Crawlspace Encapsulation system in place, your crawlspace can become a beneficial part of your home. You can use your encapsulated crawlspace as a useful place for storage, where your items can be kept safe and protected in a dry environment. When properly sealed against groundwater and moisture, your crawlspace can also serve as a proper barrier between your home’s living spaces and the earth beneath. You can rest easy knowing that no musty odors, post-rain humidity, or pests are going to be creeping into your home from below.

Give New Life to Your Crawlspace with ’58 Foundations & Waterproofing

At ’58 Foundations & Waterproofing, we know that every home and crawlspace is unique. When you call us about our crawlspace encapsulation services, we’ll be happy to offer you both a free crawlspace inspection and a detailed estimate that’s designed to fit your crawlspace’s needs. We’ve been helping customers just like you since 1958—with over 64 years of expertise, you can rest easy knowing that our crawlspace solutions are designed to be both effective and long-lasting!