Water in a Crawl Space
Water is an unwelcome guest in any crawl space. We all know that it needs to be addressed (even when not as obvious as a house surrounded by water), but what to do about the water can seem like a daunting task. Regardless of what else may need to be done in the crawl space, solving water intrusion is always the first step.
Causes of water intrusion or sources of water
One-time events, such as major floods and leaking pipes, must be specifically addressed. In these cases, contact a remediation company or plumber immediately.
Most water comes in slowly and over time. Slow and continuous water issues are often undetected but just as damaging.
These sources of water could be a combination of:
- Overflowing gutters and misdirected downspouts
- Grading around the house leaning towards the foundation
- Gaps or cracks in the foundation wall
- Inoperable vent wells
- Groundwater underneath the soil
Addressing water sources from exterior
Ideally, you want to avoid water getting into the crawl space to begin with. This means isolating the main cause and tackling the problem at the source. This could be as simple or as complex as:
- Rerouting downspouts
- Cleaning out gutters
- Avoiding over-watering of landscaping
- Regrading land around perimeter of house
- Waterproofing exterior walls
Water or Moisture Problem?
If water is still coming in, then address the water from inside the crawl space. It is important to remember that there is a difference between a water problem and a moisture problem. Overall, ATMOX solves moisture issues with ventilation and dehumidification – it does not solve a direct water problem.
Here’s an example of how to think about it: How do you drain your bathtub? Do you pull the plug and let the water drain out? Or do you turn on your bathroom exhaust fan and let the water evaporate before being expelled?
Think of the bathtub as your crawl space. If it has sufficient water in it, then it is going to take a very long time for a fan or dehumidifier to remove the water from the bathtub/crawl space. You need a faster way to get the water out.
Removal Options for Water in a Crawl Space
Here are some typical water removal options for a crawl space:
- French drains
- Sump pumps
While easy to understand, this type of work can be challenging, expensive and certainly back breaking. However, it is critically important to address the water and remove it as efficiently as possible.
Moisture Removal Options
One thing to keep in mind is that once you have water in the crawl space, you will likely have moisture in the air from evaporation. That moisture needs to be addressed. That is where ATMOX ventilation and dehumidification come into the solution mix.