Our homes are probably the most valuable things we will own in our lifetimes, and we want to do everything we can to protect them. But sometimes it’s the seemingly small, barely noticed things that pose the greatest danger to the stability and safety of our homes.
One of those “little” things that’s so easy to overlook is poor drainage around our homes and in our basements and crawl spaces. If we aren’t in the middle of a major flood, we may think that pooling water outside after rainstorms or the occasional puddle in the basement or crawl space is no big deal.
The truth is, if you see water above ground, there’s a lot more below ground that you don’t see. And that water below ground is wreaking havoc on your home’s foundation. Pooling water indicates that the soil – in your yard AND under your home – is saturated. As that wet dirt tries to take on more water, it expands. If your basement or crawl space has a concrete slab, the swelling soil will begin pushing your foundation upward, a condition known as heaving.
If you have a crawl space or basement with a dirt floor, the water is simply going to seep right up into the area under your home. Now the joist and beams supporting your home are soaking in puddles or even a flooded space, leaving them to rot. This, in turn, weakens these supports and attracts termites and other insects.
The question is: Would we rather pay the high costs of repairs, or would we rather ensure proper drainage before any of this damage occurs?
We know our answer. And Columbia Crawl Space can help with solutions for proper drainage.
Things to consider:
Roof/Gutters: Be sure gutters are properly installed with downspouts directing rainwater well away from the home’s foundation. Also, keep gutters clean, clear, and maintained, checking regularly for leaves and debris.
Landscaping: Ensure that the yard is higher by the foundation, sloping downward about one inch per foot moving away from the home. If necessary, additional drainage, such as French drains, can be installed to direct water away from the home.
Sump Pumps: To keep crawl spaces and basements dry, have a sump pump installed. The lines of these systems direct water to a sump tank in the floor. When water reaches a certain level in the tank, the pump automatically turns on, channeling the water to an outside location well away from the home.
Encapsulation: Crawl space encapsulation keeps your crawl space clean and dry. With this method, professionals will perform any repairs and water removal necessary, then completely seal the crawl space with a waterproof barrier and close off vents and other moisture access points.
Keeping your foundation and the space under your home dry is one of the best ways to ensure that your home will be standing strong and safe to protect you and your family for years to come.
Let the professionals at Columbia Crawl Space give you a free inspection and recommendations for your safe, dry home today.