signs of water intrusion in a Crawlspace
A healthy crawlspace contributes to a healthier living space throughout your home. Crawlspaces are notorious for having mold, water intruions issues, and high moisture contents. This in turn causes unhealthy air quality in your living environment, floor joist deterioration, and an increase in insects.
Foundation water intrusion issues have three obvious signs. The first and most obvious is standing/running water in the crawlspace. This is cause by a spring under the house, failure in exterior waterproofing, downspout/gutter issues, buried crawlspace vents, and holes in the foundation. The second sign is wet foundation wall block. This is a clear sign of the foundation wall absorbing and holding water. The third sign is efflorescence. This chalky white residue is the mineral deposits left behind when moisture transpires through masonary.
The Stack Effect
As the air inside of your home is heated, it rises upward and out of the house through the attic and or second level of your home. When the warm air escapes through the upper levels, it creates a vacuum in the lower part of the home. As much as 40% of the air in your living space comes from the crawlspace. If you have excess moisture, termite waste, dust mite waste, animal dander, and mold inside of your crawlspace, this will in turn have a negative effect on the air quality inside of your home. In the summer, air hot/humid air is drawn through the vents and cooled quickly. This in turn creates excess condensation and humidity under your home. In the winter, the cool air is drawn through the vents and cools the crawlspace. The cool air is drawn through the floor causing cold floors and sometimes a draft.