A crawl space drainage system protects your home’s structural integrity and your health. This article will cover what a crawl space is, how crawl spaces get wet, how crawl space drainage systems work, crawl space encapsulation, and other ways to keep your crawl space dry.
A crawl space foundation lifts a house approximately 1.5-3 feet off the ground and creates a space under the house that’s just big enough to crawl around in.
Crawl space foundations have been popular for decades, and when they’re waterproofed and encapsulated (more on this below), they can be used to store things like holiday decorations, tools, canned food, etc.
Crawl spaces get wet for various reasons, including the following:
For more information see, Crawl Space Waterproofing: Why You Might Need It.
A wet crawl space encourages mold growth. You don’t want mold growth in your crawl space because some air from the crawl space ends up in your home’s living area. Breathing mold spores can cause allergies and other respiratory issues – some potentially serious – for anyone living in the home. Mold will also eat away at the beams and joists in the crawl space, affecting your home’s structural integrity.
A wet crawl space also attracts pests like wood-eating termites, snakes, and rodents that leave behind toxic droppings.
If the above weren’t bad enough, if the soil under your home is prone to erosion, a wet crawl space will slowly destabilize the piers holding up the home by washing away the soil.
Bottom line: If you want a healthy home, the crawl space should be kept clean and dry. Fortunately, there’s a way to do that.
A crawl space drainage system ensures that the soil around the home’s foundation and crawl space doesn’t get saturated with water that can’t drain off. When the soil around the crawl space is dry, your chance of having a wet crawl space is significantly reduced. So, getting groundwater under control via good drainage is the key to effective waterproofing. In fact, a crawl space drainage system along with a sump pit and sump pump can even keep your crawl space dry during storms.
Crawl space drainage system installation process
Excess water in the soil will go into the drainage pipe and be directed to the sump pit. When the sump pit fills with water, the pump kicks in and expels the water away from the foundation.
After installing a crawl space drainage system, homeowners often encapsulate their crawl space as well. Crawl space encapsulation involves covering the floor and walls of the crawl space with a thick vapor barrier. This seals off the crawl space from moisture in the dirt floor and from any moisture that finds its way through the foundation wall.
If you want to kick it up a notch, you can add a dehumidifier as well for a crawl space that’s both clean and extra dry.
If you can’t afford a crawl space drainage system right now, that doesn’t mean you’re totally out of luck. There are other things you can do that will help keep groundwater around your home’s foundation under control. These include:
If you think your home might need a crawl space drainage system and are in our Kansas City, MO service area, contact us today for an estimate.