Wet Crawlspaces in Atlanta
One area of the home that is too often overlooked is the crawlspace. This area is often used as a storage area, and many homeowners forget that the crawlspace actually helps to support the entire home. Because the crawlspace is one of the main sources of support for the home above, it is important to keep it healthy and strong. However, many crawlspaces are affected by moisture issues. Damp or wet crawlspace can jeopardize the structural integrity of your entire home, and can lead to several issues throughout areas of the home. It is important to examine your crawlspace regularly and contact a professional as soon as any moisture issues are discovered.
Wet crawlspaces can be caused by many different things – poor drainage or waterproofing, excess hydrostatic pressure in the soil, or foundation failure. When the drainage system around your home does not function properly, it may cause water to pool around your foundation. This water is then more likely to seep through cracks in the foundation and enter the crawlspace. Increased groundwater and hydrostatic pressure can also result in a damp crawlspace, as the water in the ground can push against the foundation, forcing groundwater through cracks. The more cracks in your foundation from settlement or sinking, the more water may seep into your crawlspace and cause serious damage.
When examining your crawlspace, there are a few key symptoms of water issues to watch out for, such as:
- Wet or damp walls or floor
- Wet or damp insulation
- Water stains
- High humidity
- Condensation on pipes
- Wood rot
- Metal rust
- Mold or mildew growth
All of these are the common signs that there is a moisture problem in your crawlspace. Some of these issues are very serious. If the wooden support beams in your crawlspace begin to rot, or if the metal structural supports start to rust, it could compromise the structural integrity of your crawlspace. This causes the floors above to sag and become sloped or uneven. Wood rot or rusting metal can also cause cracks to form in the floor, walls, or ceiling, as the floor above sags and pulls away from the walls. Another dangerous issue that results from crawlspace moisture is mold or mildew growth. If there is mold growing in your crawlspace, it will infect the air in the crawlspace. Many homeowners do not know that much of the air throughout the home comes from the crawlspace and basement. This means that you and your family could be breathing the mold infected air from your crawlspace even if you are in other areas of the home!
Crawlspace Encapsulation and Repair in Atlanta, GA
If you have a settling or sinking crawlspace due to moisture in the ground, it can be fixed with underpinning services. Underpinning is the installation of foundation piers to support and stabilize the structure above. In the case of crawlspaces, these piers can be installed to keep the foundation secure and prevent cracks from forming in the crawlspace walls. If cracks are allowed to form, they could lead to water seepage and a damp or wet crawlspace.
The most effective and most common solution for a damp crawlspace is wall encapsulation. This process involves installing a vapor barrier all along the interior of the crawlspace to keep water out. The vapor barrier seals out moisture by resisting the permeation of water vapor through the porous concrete of the crawlspace walls. This means that water will not be allowed to seep through the concrete or leak through cracks in the foundation walls. Waterproofing your crawlspace with a vapor barrier will not only prevent water seepage, but will also keep your crawlspace strong by keeping the water from seeping into the concrete and weakening it. Encapsulation can also improve the air quality in your crawlspace by preventing mold growth, and can even act as insulation, keeping your home cooler int he summertime and warmer in the winter months.
If you notice any of the signs of a damp or wet crawlspace in your home, come see a professional immediately. Atlas Piers of Atlanta, Georgia can provide you with all of the necessary services to keep your crawlspace dry and safe. Contact us today for more information!