There’s magic going on in your home, especially in the places out of sight. One of the most important behind-the-scenes spaces is your crawl space, the small not-quite-basement under your ground floor. It’s probably a bit dirty and dingy, but this space is essential to your home’s construction and function.
Not every home has a crawl space; many use slab construction instead, where the home rests directly on a huge piece of concrete. But if yours has a crawl space, here are some tips for maintaining it and essential things to know about it.
Because the bottom of your crawl space is the ground, there’s a huge potential for water vapor to evaporate and collect in there. The most important part in this regard is something called the vapor barrier, a sheet of plastic that should cover the ground. Make sure you keep tabs on it, especially if you store lawn equipment or other items in the crawl space.
There is also ventilation to worry about; after all, the vapor has to go somewhere. Your crawl space should have vents built into the walls that you can open or shut. In the summer, it’s critical to keep them open to prevent mold and mildew. But in the winter, close them up: you don’t want your pipes to freeze. Which brings us to…
A great deal of your plumbing sits underneath your house in the crawl space. Make note of where the pipes run when you first move in, and check regularly for leaks. For reasons outlined above, moisture buildup in the crawl space is bad news!
Depending on the home, your water heater may also sit in the crawl space. One of the easiest things to check for is rust around the heater, particularly on the bottom. If you see rust, it may be due to the heater’s anode no longer functioning.
Because of all that dirt and (potentially) moisture, critters love your crawl space. Some spiders and the like are fine, but you should take critical steps to prevent roaches, termites, and other more problematic pests. The easiest things you can do here are to keep moisture in check and seal all holes with caulk, even if they’re small.
Are you looking for a beautiful custom home? Tingen Construction has been creating dream homes in the Triangle for decades. Contact us today about your custom dream or to see our current listings!