Updated: Mar 16
You know the creepy area under your floor? The one that you have to crouch to get into and try to avoid at all costs? Well, that’s your crawlspace and it’s an area of your home you can’t afford to ignore.
Your home’s crawlspace can be the source of all kinds of stuff. If it isn’t properly sealed, you could have moisture, condensation, mold, and sometimes dead critters. If it’s been a while since you’ve poked around in there, it may be a good time to inspect it. You can give us a call, or run through some of the areas that we at Healthy Homes check for potential problems.
If you have a crawlspace that is encapsulated with plastic, you should still take the time to check these areas to be sure it is doing its job and keeping your home healthy.
1) Check for Moisture and Condensation
Moisture is one of the major signs that there is an issue in your home. And if that moisture has led to mold, then it is even worse. If you check your crawlspace and find pools of water, moisture along the walls, or anything that looks damp, you’ll want to get it checked out straight away.
Likewise, if your crawlspace has already been encapsulated, you will still want to check to be sure there isn’t any moisture trapped under the plastic. If your encapsulation was done properly, you should have a fan that pulls any potential moisture and humidity out from under the plastic.
2) Check the Wood
One of the first and easiest places to check for signs of a problem is any exposed wood in your crawl space. This will be the joists, in between the joists, and also removing any insulation on the edges of your crawlspace to look for signs of moisture or mold on the wood.
If your crawlspace was encapsulated, you’ll want to be sure the plastic is secured to the block foundation and not the wood. Plastic can easily trap moisture in the wood if it’s attached directly onto it.
3) Test Mechanicals
If your crawlspace has had some work done, you’ll want to test all equipment to be sure it is working correctly. This would be your sump pump, fans to route moisture and humidity out from under the plastic from encapsulation, and your dehumidifier.
Not all crawlspaces need a dehumidifier, so if yours doesn’t have one, that doesn’t necessarily mean something is wrong.
4) Ducts and Water Lines
Likely, you’ve got at least some ducts running through your crawl space. But you may also have some water lines and maybe even a sump pump in there as well. Check around the ducts to be sure you don’t have any areas where heat or AC is leaking out of the ducts. You’ll also want to feel around the ducts to check for any potential condensation. If your crawl space gets really hot in the summer and you are running cold air through your ducts, then it has the potential to create condensation and add moisture to the crawlspace (leading to a higher chance of mold).
Check your water lines to be sure there are no leaks or condensation occurring. You’ll also want to check any water lines coming off of your sump pump or dehumidifier to be sure they are draining properly. You should have no standing water in the drain lines.
If you’ve run through each of these areas and haven’t found any suspicious areas, congratulations on your healthy home! But if you feel like you missed something or would like a second opinion, let us at Healthy Homes take out the guesswork and ensure that your home is well on it’s way to being a healthy one!
Just give us a call at 309-418-9511 to schedule an inspection!