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What is a Crawl Space ?

A crawl space, as the name implies, is an area where one can crawl around. It is not like a basement wherein a person can stand and store several things. It is only a small area, probably a foot tall, made of bare earth. Long before, crawl spaces are made for homes that lack basement or those that are not constructed with a slab. Nowadays, several commercial buildings have crawl spaces between walls in order to promote air circulation and easy access to wires or any plumbing materials. Any repair or installation can be done without hassles due to the presence of crawl spaces.

Is a Crawl Space good for your Home?

Crawl space can be advantageous at some point but it can also impose threat to your home and health. If this small area is overexposed to dirt, it can create disaster. Moisture that is present in the ground below can be a good medium for the molds to thrive. Termites, cockroaches, rodents and other kinds of pests can lodge and breed in this area, making the house more prone to destruction that is why excessive humidity can be alarming. It can rot the floor structures, even the pipes and wires that are present in the crawl space. Aside from that, molds and mildew will continue to reproduce until it creates an unhealthy environment. People who are exposed to molds will experience respiratory problems, throat irritation, sinus and nasal congestion as well as skin, nose and eye irritations. A crawl space that is created for ventilation purposes is now a threat to your health.

Avoiding potential problems of Crawl Space

Crawl spaces should be properly insulated in order not to cause problems. If a crawl space that has water pipes is not insulated, these pipes might freeze and burst during extreme temperatures. On the other hand, an uninsulated crawl space can affect the comfort of the household as it enhances the room temperature during winter or summer. Crawl space insulation is beneficial in eliminating the mold and mildew smell. Although it can either be expensive or not, the most important thing to remember is to keep the crawl space away from mold and mildew growth as well as its potential problems that it might bring. If money is not an issue, a concrete slab in the raw space can be poured in order to create a flat surface serving as an additional storage area. However, an inexpensive way in creating a crawl space vapor barrier is through installation of polyethylene thick sheet. The entire floor and walls should be covered and fastened with a heavy duty tape or masonry nails in order to keep it intact for months and years.

Just remember that crawl spaces should be checked from time to time. Any leaks or holes found within the area should be repaired or replaced right away so that it will not become an environment for mold and mildew to grow as well as a place for pests to thrive.

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