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Seattle Pest Control and Home Services: What To Do About Water In My Crawl Space.

Monday, April 29, 2013

What To Do About Water In My Crawl Space.

Having water in your crawl space can mean trouble.  There are a lot of things that can cause damage to your home, but nothing is more damaging than water.  Think about how the outside of your home is designed.  Think about the pitch of your roof, the shingles and the siding and you will see that its primary purpose is to keep water off the house.  But, water on the outside of your home is easy to spot.  Some of the most damaging water accumulation happens right under your nose.  Or, more precisely, right under your home in your crawl space.

Water accumulates in the crawl space a few different ways, but once it gets there, it doesn't really go anywhere.  All crawl spaces are damp, dark places and getting a crawl space to dry up can take awhile.  Also, in order for a crawl space to dry up, water vapors rise, which can soften and damage the structural members of your home.  In almost all cases, it is critical to pump water out by installing a sump pump. 

How to install a sump pump

This is a very dirty job and grueling hard labor.   It consists of digging trenches that flow toward a sump basin.  These trenches are typically at least 6 inches deep and 4 inches wide and are filled with corrugated piping and gravel.  The basin itself will need to be deep enough to install a submersible sump pump.   The water remediation is pretty simple, water flows through the trenches and toward the lowest point where the sump basin and pump are installed.  Most pumps are designed to automatically kick on when the water reaches a certain level and then pumps it into an exterior drain (typically by tapping it into the drainage system that your gutters are hooked up to).   Doing this job always reminds me of what it must be like to dig your way out of prison.  You are wet, muddy and have to use little tools to dig because it is such a tight space that you are working in.

Vapor barriers

Sounds easy, huh?  After your done putting in the drainage system, you no doubt will have to replace your vapor barrier (black plastic covering the ground in your crawl space).  A lot of companies will go through and tape all the seams of your vapor barrier and make it look all pretty, but keep in mind, you have a water problem and want it to drain properly.  A vapor barrier does you no good if you have standing water on top of your vapor barrier, so make sure that the seams overlap, but are not taped.

Listen, water in your crawl space is bad news and it is very tough work to rectify it.  If you have this issue under your house, I would welcome your call and I can get a bid in your hands or at the very least, offer you some friendly advice.


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