5 Ways Humidity Damages Your Crawl Space
Humidity in your crawl space isn’t a minor issue—it causes significant, escalating damage to your home over time. Some of these could even lead to serious expenses and potential health concerns. When warm, moist air gets trapped in your crawl space, a variety of problems manifest. These range from structural damage to increased energy costs or unwelcome pests. Such damage not only threatens the physical integrity of your home but also the wellbeing of you and your loved ones
The risks associated with crawl space humidity necessitate swift and appropriate intervention. Understanding these potential problems underscores the importance of regularly monitoring your crawl space, ensuring proper ventilation, and taking action at the first sign of humidity-related issues. Early detection and prevention are key to avoiding severe damage and costly repairs.
1. Mold and Mildew
When your crawl space is humid, it almost always leads to mold and mildew. Mold has far-reaching effects on both your home’s structure and the health of anyone living in it.
These fungi flourish in damp conditions and slowly eat away at organic materials—most notably wood, which provides critical structural support in many crawl spaces.
Over time, this decay compromises the strength and integrity of these elements, leading to costly repairs and replacements.
Beyond the physical damage, mold and mildew also impact health. Mold spores can rise through the floor into your living spaces, contributing to poor indoor air quality.
These spores can also trigger allergic reactions and respiratory issues in some individuals. These factors make your home a less safe and comfortable environment, especially for those with pre-existing conditions like asthma.
2. Higher Utility Bills
Humidity actually has an impact on your home’s energy efficiency. Moist air retains more heat and results in condensation, which makes your air conditioning unit work overtime to extract moisture and cool your home.
This increased demand on your HVAC system can lead to higher energy usage and, consequently, an increase in your utility bills.
Humidity can also shorten the lifespan of your air conditioning system. The harder your system has to work to maintain comfortable temperatures, the more wear and tear it endures.
This could result in more frequent repairs and earlier system replacement. Ensuring your crawl space is dry and properly ventilated can therefore be an essential step towards energy efficiency and cost savings.
3. Sagging Floor Joists
A common and serious issue caused by excessive crawl space humidity is the deterioration of wooden structures within your home, specifically floor joists. When exposed to continuous dampness, the joists can start to absorb the moisture, leading to rot.
Over time, this weakens the wood, causing sagging floors and structural instability. This isn’t merely an aesthetic issue—it’s a structural one.
If left untreated, it’s likely to compromise the overall stability of your home, leading to major repairs or renovations!
A humid crawl space creates an attractive habitat for various pests, including rodents, beetles, termites, carpenter ants, and even raccoons.
These creatures are drawn to damp, moldy environments and may cause significant damage to wooden structures below your home. Over time, their activity may damage the crawl space, leading to pest control and repair services.
Moreover, these pests usually affect the indoor air quality of your home. If they die under the floor, they produce unpleasant odors that rise from your crawl space into your living area.
These odors only get more visceral over time, making the inside of your home a bit uncomfortable. By maintaining a dry crawl space, you can deter these pests and improve your home’s overall air quality.
5. Damage to Insulation
Humidity in your crawl space doesn’t mix well with your home’s insulation, especially when it’s made of fiberglass. Insulation is vital for keeping your home energy-efficient by reducing heat transfer.
When humidity increases, fiberglass insulation absorbs the moisture, losing its insulating ability. This forces your HVAC system to work harder to keep the house comfortable, possibly driving up your energy costs.
Furthermore, wet insulation can become heavy and sag or even detach, which not only further reduces its effectiveness but also allows for indoor moisture intrusion. This makes crawl space humidity even worse.
AquaGuard Helps Protect Your Crawl Space From Humidity
Remember, humidity doesn’t just go away on it’s own. Living in Georgia means it is a part of life. The best thing you can do is install water management tools in your crawl space to defend against the negative affects of humidity.
At AquaGuard, we specialize in crawl space encapsulation and repair, a comprehensive service that combines different water management tools and allows them to work together below your home. From vapor barriers to dehumidifiers, we have industry-leading solutions that provide long-term moisture control.
Contact us today to learn more about our encapsulation services and schedule a free inspection. We’ll come to your home and identify the root cause behind high humdity in your crawl space. Then, we’ll create a plan and same day quote so you know exactly what to expect from the repair job. Stop humidity in its tracks and put water back in its place with AquaGuard!