Is the water in the crawl space normal?
The term “craw space” basically refers to a hollow area underneath the floors of some homes.
This space separates the ground and the first floor. The primary function of the crawl space is for purposes of moisture insulation.
In other words, it serves as a space barrier that keeps moisture from seeping through the building floor.
Is Water In Crawl Space Normal?
If crawl spaces are meant to guard against moisture penetration, it means that moisture is an ever-present reality. This is especially true in humid climates or during periods of heavy rainfall.
When dealing with moisture, the worst-case scenario will be standing water below your basement.
For the most part, this is likely to go unnoticed especially in situations where homeowners aren’t vigilant enough. Pooling or standing water in your basement is what we seek to discuss. Is it normal?
If not, what’s the risk level posed by such?
Water Under House: Crawl Space Matters
In seeking to find out whether water present in a crawl space is acceptable, we’ll have to first determine the extent of water present.
Speaking of the extent of water, there’s moisture, and then there’s standing water. It’s impossible to eliminate moisture from a crawl space as well as a structure.
In other words, 100% elimination of moisture isn’t possible as there’s always some level of moisture arising from climatic conditions. However, at certain levels, water becomes problematic to your structure.
This could lead to its rapid deterioration. Your best bet of preventing water damaging is by addressing it.
Is Water in Basement Normal?
This is a good question to ask because the crawl space was originally meant to shield or protect the structure from damage due to moisture problems.
As long as no visible pooling of water is noticed, moisture presence shouldn’t be much of a big deal.
The crawl space should be sufficient to deal with such by protecting your property from significant moisture penetration. However, there are situations where pooling water is noticed.
Such could arise from natural or artificial causes which will be discussed shortly.
When the water in the crawl space is in the form of moisture and isn’t visible, such shouldn’t pose much of a problem.
However, pooling or standing water becomes a major problem that needs to be addressed before it worsens your home’s condition.
In a nutshell, standing water in your crawl space is a bad idea that needs to be tackled as urgently as possible. To find out why this is a problem, you’ll have to take into consideration the different reasons provided below.
Why Standing Water in Crawl Spaces is a Bad Idea
Standing water decreases your home’s value in addition to promoting pest invasion on your property. Structural integrity is likely to get affected as well.
What more? The likelihood of mold and mildew growth on your property is high when there’s standing water.
Another reason why standing water in crawl space might become a problem is increased spending on energy bills. Let’s discuss each of these problems to offer more clarity.
Decrease in Property Value
One of the immediate negative impacts regarding standing water in crawl space has to do with the decrease in a property’s value. This is seen in situations where you need to sell your home.
Prospective buyers will want to find out whether the property is worth investing in.
Withstanding water noticed in your crawl space, you should expect a significant drop in value. The same reaction is likely for other related conditions like mold or pest presence.
You’ll have to eliminate such a problem to shore up your property’s value.
Promotion of Pest Invasion
Standing water in a crawl space is a sure recipe for future pest problems. Pooling water offers the perfect conditions for pests like roaches and a wide range of other bugs.
One of the most troubling pest situations that could result is termite infestation.
With termite presence, the risk of losing your home increases significantly.
Getting rid of these pests is also quite difficult. Termites can establish colonies on your property with millions of members within a single colony.
Your best shot at control will be to prevent any condition(s) considered favorable to termites including standing water.
Structural Integrity is Affected
Having standing water in your crawl space is likely to affect the structural integrity of your property. Crawl space and basement walls are made from concrete and concrete are known to be porous.
Now, the continued exposure to water causes such concrete to soften while also expanding and contracting.
When this happens, cracks eventually develop. The most exposed or affected parts include foundation supports found within the crawl space. These are likely to become twisted or warped.
Ultimately, such a condition affects the structural integrity of a home.
Mold & Mildew Growth
The possibility of mold and mildew growth is quite significant when water collects in your crawl space. These are surface fungi that easily cause damage to wooden components of your home’s structure.
While this is true, the problem goes beyond property damage.
Health risks are presented when spores released by mold and mildew are inhaled by humans. Increased water presence in crawl spaces further promotes mildew growth.
Increased Spending on Energy Bills
Water in a crawl space leads to an increased presence of humid air.
Such air increases your home’s temperature to higher than usual levels. An air conditioner will be necessary to help cool the air down to acceptable levels.
The continued cooling action translates to higher energy bills.
Causes of Standing Water in Crawl Space
We’ve earlier stated that standing water in the basement could be due to several causes (both natural and artificial).
Why is my crawl space wet?
These include a high water table, broken water heater, cracks on mortar joints, walls, and floors, surface water flooding, and condensation (also called sweating walls).
Other possible situations include leaks or burst pipes, and sewer backup. Whatever the problem is, your best bet is to have it fixed by calling in the pros.
A wide range of solutions could be offered that help eliminate the standing water problem.
Water in the basement isn’t normal. It leads to a wide range of problems as discussed above. This is why you’ll have to take urgent measures to address such problems.