Should I Clean Out My Crawlspace?
The crawlspace (raised foundation) of our home is not something we think about on a regular basis...nor do we think about cleaning it out...but crawl space maintenance is a must! Having a clean crawlspace is important for the health and safety of your home and your family.
Crawlspace issues that can affect your health and/or compromise the structural integrity of your home can be avoided with regular maintenance.
Inspecting your crawlspace is a disgusting thought, and is probably not on the top ten list of things to clean…probably doesn’t make your top 100! It’s dark, damp and smelly, and who knows what’s crawling around in there.😬
You may not realize this, but your crawlspace plays an important role in your homes air quality. You may have noticed that you have vents on the outside of your crawlspace. These vents allow outside air to circulate under the floor, and this constant air circulation rises back up into your living area. Basically, your breathing whatever is in the air down there.
Poorly maintained crawlspaces can develop cracks or gaps that allow moisture/water to seep in and will allow bugs and mice to get in. Not having vent screens can allow larger creatures like rats, cats, snakes, possums, and depending where you live, even raccoons.
Having a damp crawlspace can encourage mold and mildew to grow. It will grow on your wood posts, causing them to rot, which can lead to the instability of your subfloor. If it seeps into your insulation, it can cause it to not properly insulate your home. Now your home's energy efficiency is reduced.
So, before going under there you may want to prepare yourself. Definitely wear a mask. You don’t want to breathe in any dust or air that's contaminated with mold spores. Long sleeve shirt over coveralls and gloves. Don’t forget your flash light!
Some of the things you’ll be looking for are animals (dead or alive), moldy or damp insulation, lack of insulation, pest infestation, dampness or standing water.
Knowing what issues you have, will allow you to address each issue with confidence. Now that you know what to look for, you can take a peek inside your crawlspace yourself! If you’d prefer not to go in your crawlspace (that would be me), you can have a professional (such as ourselves) check the health of your crawlspace!