Pros Of A Crawl Space
- It keeps a home a bit safer should a plumbing leak occur in the pipes since they are under the house and not running in the attic or above the ceiling.
- Crawl spaces are ideal for areas with high moisture or in coastal areas with sandy soil, where excessive water can build pressure against a full basement or concrete slab and find its way into cracks.
- Good for sloped lots
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Check This Out: How To Get Rid Of Mold In Crawl Space
Dealing with mold issues in every part of your home is really stressful and overwhelming. And if you have mold in the crawl space, it means that theres water that has been there for some time. If not addressed right away, what you may not realize is that mold has already spread and can affect the quality of air throughout your home. However, this can be solved by tackling the issue immediately so it wont get worse. Continue reading this article to guide you with your decisions about your home and how to get rid of mold in the crawl space.
What Damage Can Mold Do To Floor Joists In A Crawl Space
If you dont address your mold issue promptly, it can cause severe damage to your floor joists and the overall support structure of your home. When wood holds onto moisture, it becomes weaker over time. Then, add mold into the mix, and the wood becomes even more damaged.
Your floorboards and other joists will begin to crack as the mold works its way through the beams. The scary part is, this is all happening underneath your house. So, you might not even notice how bad the problem is until its too late and someone gets injured.
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Use Kitty Litter Or Baking Soda
Even if you dont have any pet cats, you can use scented cat litter or baking soda to get rid of the moldy basement smell. Those two products tend to absorb moisture and odors. Just be careful these items dont actually fix the problem. All they do is hide the musty odor.
To remove the odor, all you need to do is place the litter or baking soda in an open container and put it in the basement. Make sure to change it out regularly. If you have a large basement, use multiple containers. This can also work well in vacant houses to keep them fresh smelling.
How To Remove Crawl Space Smell With A Crawl Space Barrier
Crawl space foundation vapor barriers prevent ground moisture evaporation from entering your crawl space air. When you couple a crawl space foundation vapor barrier system with a waterproofing system, moisture and water can be barred from the crawl space before it has a chance to cause problems -which means no more mold, foul odors, rot, rust, insects, rodents, and other humidity- or moisture-related problems.
A crawl space foundation vapor barrier is designed to resist the flow of air. By stopping air movement, it turns your crawl space foundation into a semi-conditioned area by making the temperature close to the living spaces in your home above the crawl space. When the temperature in your crawl space foundation is similar to the temperature in your home’s living areas, your floors feel warmer in the winter.
A crawl space foundation vapor barrier system also has been known to slow the movement of harmful gases like radon from infiltrating the soil, helping the crawl space foundation vapor barrier system greatly reduce the levels of radon found in the home.
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Black Mold In Crawl Space
Whether its the Stachybotrys atra or Stachybotrys chartarum type, black mold produces mycotoxins that can trigger allergic reactions and can even be potentially hazardous. Considered to be the most toxic of all mold varieties, black molds are actually dark gray or somewhat greenish in color, and they usually appear as flat, not fluffy, bumpy, fuzzy, or even powdery.
Get Rid Of Mold On Floor Joists In Crawl Space: In 7 Easy Steps
Floor joists in the crawl space are not inviting at all yet they are one of the best friendly places for mold growth. Basically, humid regions are highly susceptible to mold growth. Therefore, mold on deck, under the sink, or even on floor joists in crawl space is a very common thing to occur. Unfortunately, you hardly realize the fact since you are not a regular visitor of the place.
However, mold on floor joists in crawl spaces can be very severely dangerous at times. The intense occurrence of mold causes bad odor and an unpleasant environment. You surely wont like to live in your house knowing the fact that mold has taken over your crawl space. Hence, knowing how to get rid of mold on floor joists in the crawl space is very important.
However, intensive mold growth may require professional help. But if the mold spores are only in their earlier stage, then this becomes a DIY project that you yourself can handle. The main reason behind the crawl space being a mold breeding ground is its tendency for collecting moisture quickly.
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Crawl Space Fungus Treatment Cost
Crawl space fungus treatment costs $500 to $4,000, with most people spending $2,000 on average, depending on the extent of growth and size of the spread. Fungal growth like white mold, mushrooms, slime fungi, and wood rot uses the same treatment and costs the same as mold removal.
While mold is a serious threat, a wood-destroying fungus like white, brown, or soft rot jeopardizes the homes structural integrity if left untreated. Fungus in a crawl space is often contained in a small area but indicates all of the following problems:
- Excessive moisture
- Airborne fungal and mold spores can potentially enter the living space and cause allergic reactions and be toxic.
- Warm breeding grounds for mold and bacteria to grow rapidly
Removing Excess Moisture From The Air
If your basement is even partially underground, theres a good chance the mold and mildew are coming from excess humidity in the air. There are several ways to maintain the level of humidity in the home, such as open windows and using dehumidifiers. The best way to remove moisture from a damp basement is to keep a dehumidifier down there. A single dehumidifier in the basement will remove quite a bit of the dampness and lessen the smell.
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How To Spot And Control Mold In Crawl Spaces
If you can smell something musty around your crawl space or someone in your home is experiencing allergic reactions, you might have a mold problem. And, if your baseboards near your crawl space are moldy or anything around your crawlspace is discolored, thats where its coming from, and you need to inspect it.
Common signs you may have mold in your home or crawl spaces:
- A earthy or musty odor
- A sudden allergic reaction
- Green or brown material discoloration
- Peeling or warping material
- A water leak in a dark space
If you notice that you might have a mold problem, you cant just open it up, climb in, and have a look. You have to put safety first. Before you inspect and while youre down there, you need to wear protective gear like disposable coveralls, a respirator or face mask, non-vented goggles, and heavy gloves.
Again, mold is damaging for your health, and if spores get to your lungs, it can have profound health implications. But thats the reason that youre here in the first place. So, once youve gotten into your safety gear, its time to inspect and control any mold in your homes crawl spaces.
The Growth Of Mold In Your Crawl Space
Unless your crawl space is adequately insulated and ventilated, you may find mold starts to develop there. When you do finally spot mold underneath the house and creeping along the floor joists in the crawl space, it could mean there is a bigger problem in the upstairs areas of your house as well. Early detection of mold is vital to keeping colonies of growth at bay.
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Why Does My Home Smell Like Mold
The reason your home smells like mildew or mold is because it is likely there are spores floating around in the air. Your homes ventilation system could be causing a little bit of humidity to get trapped inside, which breeds these moldy smells.
These mold spores can grow anywhere, but they tend to grow most often in places with less traffic or extra moisture .
You might think that mold and musty odors only happen in old homes, but they can grow even in new houses and buildings. Mold just needs darkness, air, moisture, and warmth to grow.
So, if you have begun to smell mold in your home, how do you get rid of it?
Dont worry there are a few ways you can get rid of that musty smell quickly and easily!
How To Fix A Smelly Crawl Space
Your home is your shelter, your safe space, so if something is wrong or unusual, you want to get it fixed. If youve noticed a foul smell coming from your basement or crawl space area, there could be several reasons for it, some of which could be dangerous to your health. Dont let it sit any longer, keep reading to find out whats causing the smell and how to get rid of it.
Why does my crawl space smell? Crawl spaces and basements have long been hated and loved by homeowners. When they are safe and useful, theyre great aspects to have in your home, but when they werent build correctly or have suffered structural problems, they can be a nightmare to fix. Noticing that your crawl space is starting to smell could be because of the following reasons:
- Moisture From Outside
- Dead Animals and Their Waste
Unfortunately, none of these potential reasons are very appealing, hence the smell and some can take time and money to fix. Luckily, there are some solutions to your problem.
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How To Remove Crawl Space Odors
The best way to remove an odor from the crawl space is to exchange it with fresh air. How do you accomplish this in a crawl space? In some form, the air from within the crawl space needs to be pulled out with a fan for efficiency. One simple option for an enclosed crawl space is a continuous or timed exhaust fan in your crawl space to help improve the odor. The slight negative pressure on the house will force the air out of the home and into the crawl space thus improving your air quality within the crawl space and living space.
Throughout your home in kitchens and bathrooms, exhaust fans help improve odors and air quality. The same is true in your crawl space, it will benefit from air exchange. Exhausting air from the crawl space allows for the air exchange necessary to improve the air and odors while preventing the odors from building up and infiltrating your home.
Air Quality within Moisture Control
Many closed crawl spaces have dehumidifiers installed. Although a dehumidifier can be an integral part of your moisture control solution, it does not actually exchange the air within your crawl space. The dehumidifier typically uses a filter to recycle the air and remove excess moisture from the air. However, an exhaust fan will effectively exchange the air and improve your air quality.
How To Get Rid Of Mold Smell In Your Home
The first step to getting rid of that mildew odor is finding the source. Scour your home for any evidence of rotting wood or mold growth.
You might have hidden places where you cant see it, but if theres a damp or wet area, chances are good there could be some mold hiding out.
If you have a great sense of smell, you should be able to follow any moldy odors to track it down.
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What Is Crawl Space Mold
The mold in your crawl space may be one of a number of different types. Mold spores are found commonly in the air and soil. A few of the common environmental molds you may find in your crawl space and house are:
Each of these different types of mold are commonly found in the environment. The spores from these different mold species can live and travel in the air, and in the soil. Unfortunately, the environment in crawl spaces provides a perfect place for mold growth to flourish.
Mold requires moisture to grow which tends to be plentiful in crawl spaces. Water damage, plumbing leaks, or water seeping in through the foundation walls can all contribute to moisture problems underneath your house. Mold feeds on the sugar and starch that is found in wood, called cellulose, which is usually found in the structural elements underneath houses. With these conditions, mold growth can happen fast.
Many types of mold can be hazardous to human and animal health, so you want to be sure to get rid of any mold before it has a chance to spread into your home. Crawl space mold has a number of adverse effects including:
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Dont Risk Your Health
As sure as you are of your DIY talents, dont risk taking on a job thats too big or too dangerous. We strongly recommend calling in a mold remediation service if:
- Affected areas include damaged or rotted wood.
- Mold covers multiple areas larger than 3 square feet.
- You or any family members deal with allergies or respiratory problems.
Bringing in a mold remediation specialist also addresses issues like identifying and eliminating mold sources and repairing and replacing affected materials.
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Diy May Be An Option But Always Be Safe
We hope that the above tips and tricks will help you eliminate and prevent mold growth in your basement or crawlspace. Hopefully you can do some of the work yourself to save some money, but remember, safety first! Some of these areas can be very challenging to work in, such as the crawlspace. Check out our DIY Mold Removal eBook to see how we can help you with your project.
If youre not comfortable doing the work yourself, dont take any chances and just hire a professional. Its not worth risking your safety to save a few bucks.
How To Get Rid Of Mold On Floor Joists In A Crawl Space
Have you ever gone into the crawl space under your house and smelled the mildew and musk? This scent indicates that theres a lot of moisture, which is a universal issue in crawl spaces. But this moisture leads to mold which causes lots of damage, so you need to know how to get rid of mold on floor joists in a crawl space.
Heres how to get rid of mold on floor joists in a crawlspace use a 1:10 solution of white vinegar to water. Spray the mold and wipe down the area, then apply a second application and let it sit for 24 hours. Use a drop light to make sure you can see, and a dehumidifier to keep the crawlspace at 30%-50% humidity.
Removing mold is a dangerous task, which is why most professionals say not to do it on your own. However, the cost of hiring a professional is expensive. This guide will tell you everything you need to know about the process.
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Who Do I Call If I Have Mold Problems
If you just see minor evidence of mold and mildew, you may be able to take care of the issue yourself with some deep cleaning with a store-bought solution. However, the situation can quickly get out of control, in which case youll need to call in a professional. Much more serious damage can be done if mold is left untreated. Do a simple search for mold removal services in your area to find a mold remediation professional.
Fast Steps To Get Rid Of Mold In Your Crawl Space
Last Updated on August 27, 2021 by Diana Rodriguez-Zaba
The crawl space isnt really inviting. You dont go down there very often. Still, the whole house smells musty, and youve looked everywhere else. You grab a flashlight and take a peek. Right away, you can see the source of that unpleasant odor. Its there in the crawl space.
You know how to deal with the stuff under a sink. Do you know how to get rid of mold in a crawl space?
As a DIY project, crawl space mold remediation is usually manageable, but you have to be very careful. You need personal protection gear, the right cleaning products and plenty of patience.
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How To Remove Crawl Space Smell
Now that you’ve determined where the odor is coming from, you can determine what action to take for how to remove crawl space smell. If you’re dealing with a foreign object, it can be as simple as removing it from your crawl space. If it’s rodents or vermin, call Animal Control or another professional to remove the carcasses. If it’s mold, call a mold remediation specialist. High humidity? Invest in a dehumidifier. If it’s the soil underneath your house, consider installing a crawl space barrier.