When it comes to protecting your crawl space from unwanted moisture damage, you can do more than just waterproof your home’s perimeter. You can also seal off the crawl space altogether, too. Of course, you will want to hire experts to repair any damage that might lurk within first.
Accessing your crawl space can be a bit of a hassle, especially if you cannot locate it in the first place. You might even have a crawl space door that is located below grade level in an open well, which obviously invites all sorts of issues into your crawl space. You need a solution that can not only seal out any moisture issues permanently, but also allow our experts to travel in and out of this space safely.
Installing a crawl space access well is a good first step to mitigating any damage this space might face. Our experts can fit the best well over your crawl space while also having it work in tandem with our other crawl space solutions. Let’s take a closer look into how a crawl space access well can benefit your home below!
Protecting Your Crawl Space
Your crawl space doesn’t make up a significant percentage of your home. Even so, it is essential that you keep this spot as watertight as possible. Any exposed pipes that end up in contact with high levels of internal humidity can readily burst, causing flooding throughout your home. External moisture known as hydrostatic pressure can wreak havoc not only on your crawl space but the structural supports therein—not to mention those in your foundation.
Most concerning, however, is the stack effect. The stack effect sees the hotter, lighter air in your home outmatched by heavy, cool, and damp air. Under most circumstances, hotter air in your home moves to the upper levels of your home. That air tends to rise because it is not as dense as cooler air. However, as moisture settles in your crawl space, the amount of cool air in your home can create a pressure difference between the lower floors and the upper ones. As such, that moisture can more readily make its way into your upper levels as your home attempts to re-stabilize. That transfer, directly related to the aforementioned pressure imbalance, is known as the stack effect.
When it comes to preventing the kind of imbalance that spreads moist air through your home, you have a few options available to you. You can collaborate with the professionals in your area to determine which may suit your needs best.
Signs of Potential Crawl Space Damage
Before you can reach out to area professionals, you’ll want to determine whether you’re taking preventive measures or investing in crawl space repairs. Being as sensitive as it is, your crawl space will let you know almost immediately if something is wrong. With that in mind, you’ll want to conduct your own crawl space investigation and look out for:
- Damp walls
- Sagging floors
- Rusting floor and rim joists
- Standing water or ice
- Mold growth
- Warping door frames
- Fogging windows
Note that unpleasant smells can indicate that something may have gone wrong in your crawl space. However, these symptoms can just as readily indicate foundation damage. If you don’t have experience looking through your crawl space or otherwise assessing the health of your home, you’ll want to reach out to the professionals in your area.
It is essential that you see any crawl space damage attended to before you invest in a crawl space access well. If you try to install these protective measures without first fixing what damage has impacted your crawl space, then your investment will be for naught. The continued exposure to significant levels of moisture will see these protective measures damaged long before their time. Alternatively, by fixing up your crawl space in advance, you can make sure that your access well has as much of an opportunity to protect your home as possible.
The Solution: Crawl Space Access Wells
If your crawl space is dealing with moisture issues or other damage due to broken crawl space doors or other open points, then it makes sense to seal it off. Of course, you will want to hire a crawl space expert from Innovative Basement Authority to repair all these issues first. After we do that, however, we can also offer a secure exterior access to your crawl space that will seal it off from any issues.
- Better than Average Crawl Space Doors
Most crawl space doors are made of wood or metal, which can either rot or rust over time. This then makes it easier for moisture, mold and mildew, or pests to infiltrate this space and cause even more damage within. For those with any open wells as an access point to the crawl space, however, this damage can be even worse. You need a solution that will totally seal off this space to any outside threats.
Our crawl space access well will do just that! Any moisture that attempts to infiltrate will merely wash off the top, keeping your crawl space completely dry. No mold or mildew spores will be able to invade and spread, and it will be more difficult for pests to get inside as well. This easily tops any loose crawl space door or open well source any day.
- Easy to Access and Lock
Our crawl space access well has a durable hinged top with a locking mechanism to help deter any pests or other creatures from wandering into your crawl space. If you need to go into your crawl space for whatever reason (which experts absolutely do not recommend), you can simply flip the top back up again and peer inside whenever you wish.
The top of the well is a much safer and more secure option compared to the average crawl space door or open well plan. With it in place, you can rest easy knowing that your crawl space will not face any issues now or in the foreseeable future!
Perhaps the biggest benefit this well can provide your crawl space is the lack of any maintenance you need to perform. Indeed, once this system is put in place, you do not need to do anything at all! It will simply seal your crawl space from any issues that threaten to damage it and that’s that. No need to paint over this well or refurbish it whatsoever.
At most, you will need to call the crawl space experts from Innovative Basement Authority to perform a yearly inspection within this well. Annual inspections can assure you that everything within the crawl space is still running smoothly. Protecting your crawl space has never been so easy!
Crawl Space Access Wells
Your crawl space is one of the most sensitive parts of your home. It can fall victim to water damage for a myriad of reasons, ranging from overexposure to hydrostatic pressure to the mere presence of tree roots beneath your foundation. When you protect your crawl space, you’re not only working to get ahead of potential damage. You’re simultaneously protecting your home’s value, not to mention the health of your family.
- Water Damage and Your Home’s Market Value
Moisture that makes its way into your home poses an immediate threat to your crawl space’s structural integrity. As mentioned, hydrostatic pressure can build up outside of your home and can cause your crawl space’s structural supports to crack. The stack effect can carry that moisture through the rest of your home, causing similar cracks, wall bowing, and floor damage to appear elsewhere in your home.
Installing a secure access well is one way to keep the amount of hydrostatic pressure your home has to interact with on the manageable side—and if you want to put your home on the market at some point in the near future, you’ll want to make sure you’ve done as much as you can to keep that unwanted moisture out. If you let water damage spread over an extended period of time, you risk losing up to 30 percent of your home’s market value.
- Water Damage and Your Family’s Health
It isn’t just the value of your home that’s at risk due to unwanted crawl space moisture, though. Hydrostatic pressure, the stack effect, and the general presence of high humidity in your home can put your family’s health at risk. This kind of moisture aggravates pre-existing conditions, including allergies and respiratory problems. Even residents who’ve never experienced these problems before can begin to show symptoms if your crawl space stays damp for too long.
What’s worse is that these problems can arise before moisture-loving mold takes root in your home. If your crawl space falls victim to both leaks and mold, then your family members may experience worsening health problems ranging from a persistent cough to long-term lung damage. If you make an effort to protect your home from unwanted moisture, you can get ahead of these conditions and prevent mold from accessing the nutrients it needs to thrive in your crawl space.
If you’re concerned about the cost of repairing your home, you may consider exploring alternative means of repairing or sealing off your crawl space. While doing so is an option that’s readily available to you, trying to fix up your space without professional help can lead to a litany of problems.
- DIY and Your Budget
Your crawl space may not take up much of your home’s square footage, but that doesn’t mean that repairing it can’t cost you a good chunk of change. When it comes to installing a crawl space access well, your expenses can run even higher. You will, after all, have to purchase all the materials you need not only to seal off your crawl space but to repair any damage done to it as well. You may even need to invest in special tools to properly complete your installation.
Comparatively, professional contractors already have the tools and connections they need to seal your crawl space for a fraction of the DIY cost. If you go out searching for materials on your own, you won’t be able to benefit from a contractor’s material deals. Not only that, but there’s a risk you may purchase materials that aren’t suited to your crawl space, meaning you’ll have to pay even more to find the correct supplies. If you’re not careful with your preliminary research and your initial purchase, you may end up blowing your repair budget out of the water.
- DIY and Additional Crawl Space Damage
There’s always a chance that you may do more damage to your crawl space when attempting a DIY crawl space access well. If you don’t have any experience working in home repair, then there’s a chance you may, as mentioned, install a well that is altogether inappropriate for your crawl space. In installing these inappropriate materials, you may think you’ve sealed off your crawl space when, in reality, you’ve obscured the real damage and made things worse for yourself in the long run.
If you’ve accidentally obscured signs of damage in your crawl space, your DIY attempt may cost you a significant chunk of change over the course of the coming years. When you work with professionals, comparatively, you can rest assured knowing that parties with years of experience are working with you to protect your crawl space from the worst of the moisture that might otherwise damage your home.
Additional Home Waterproofing Measures
That said, there are more waterproofing options available to you beyond just a crawl space access well. While both can help drive water away from your home, they will not actively push out any water that may have settled or otherwise risen into your crawl space. Similarly, they only block the impact of cracks instead of attending to that kind of damage themselves.
If you want to discuss additional waterproofing measures, you’re in luck. The professionals in your area will be able to work through an extensive catalog of options with you. Some of the most effective that you can pair with your access well:
- Encapsulation with a vapor barrier
- Sump pump
- Interior drainage system
- Waterproof insulation
When it comes to the ins and outs of stacking home waterproofing measures, the professionals working in North Dakota, Minnesota, and Montana have you covered. They can walk through your crawl space with you and help you determine which of the solutions in their catalog can help you best protect your space from unwanted moisture.
Working With Professionals In North Dakota, Eastern Montana, and Minnesota
Ready to seal off your crawl space and have a safer access well? You can reach out to the Innovative Basement Authority professionals serving eastern Montana, North Dakota, and Minnesota to schedule a free inspection. Afterward, you can look over a free services quote to determine whether you need any crawl space repairs and what kind of waterproofing measures might best suit your needs.