It’s easy to overlook the humble crawlspace. Most people see crawlspaces as no more than places for dust to collect or sunlight to fall. Unfortunately, ignoring the crawlspace in your Flint home is not just an aesthetic concern; it’s a safety one. Crawlspaces are just as vulnerable to water damage and mold troubles as more popular areas of the home, like a well-furnished basement.
Fortunately, a thorough waterproofing job of a crawlspace can prevent these issues from growing out of control.
What Causes Cracks in Crawlspace Walls?
When you notice small cracks in your crawlspace walls, you might shrug it off as simple wear and tear from those harsh Michigan winters. These cracks may signify a much larger problem, however. Some common causes of crawlspace cracks include:
- Severe Weather – Heavy snow and pounding rain can take a toll on even the hardiest of foundations. Unlike thirsty soil and durable drains, your foundation is simply not designed to take on all this extra weight and water. As a result, cracks may form.
- Plumbing Problems – Extreme weather isn’t the only culprit when it comes to foundational damage by water. If a sink above your crawlspace is leaking even slightly, water can seep into that space and start wreaking havoc. Minor cracks may be the first sign that anything is even wrong.
- Settling Foundation – The earth on which your home sits is not some unmovable force. It will inevitably shift and change with time. Sometimes, you can see what is going on beneath your feet just by looking at the cracks on the walls of your crawlspace. In some cases, these cracks are minor and may not be a pressing concern. However, even minor cracks should be monitored to ensure that they don’t become more than a simple nuisance.
Why Should You Waterproof a Crawlspace?
The problem with cracks in your crawlspace foundation is that they don’t always stay small. As the seasons rage on year after year and the foundation settles and resettles again, cracks can widen and even grow in number. As a result, your home becomes more susceptible to unwanted guests like mice, rats, and insects. What’s more, the excess moisture from an uncontrolled leak can invite another potential pest: mold. Mold not only looks gross, it also smells and can cause health problems in some people.
Even if you do manage to avoid furry, scaly, or odorous intruders, water can do unspeakable damage to valuable items, carpet, and floor joists. It’s not just water that manages to get through these cracks either; air can, too. When this happens, pipes can freeze more easily when the weather gets cold.
Finally, foundational issues tend to grow rapidly. The longer you wait to address a problem, the more costly it will likely be. Waterproofing your crawlspace is a long-term investment.
Insulation vs. Encapsulation: What is the Difference?
Leaving your crawlspace exposed to the bitter cold and rain not only makes for a drafty home. You could be letting precious heat escape, which you surely cherish during cold Flint winters. You can combat these issues by investing in crawlspace insulation.
When we insulate your crawlspace, we use materials like spray foam to shield the warmth of your home from the chill outside. This process can also keep pipes from freezing on those particularly harsh winter days. The insulation serves as a buffer against the elements.
Encapsulation is essentially insulation amplified and is an ideal option if your crawlspace is prone to leaks and floods. When encapsulating your crawlspace, we will look for the places in your crawlspace where water is most likely to creep in. We then seal the crawlspace to prevent any moisture from seeping through.
How We Can Help
You don’t have to tackle the waterproofing project on your own. At Bluebird CFW, we can easily transform dark, damp crawlspaces into clean, dry, and welcoming ones. We have been helping residents of Flint repair their homes and businesses for over 20 years. Let us help you keep the water and draft out of your cozy Flint home.