Why Crawl Space Waterproofing Matters

Why does waterproofing crawl space walls matter so much? There are a number of conditions that can cause damage to this space in a home, which in turn poses a big threat to safety and hygiene in the house. 

Problems like rotten wooden frames, high humidity and condensation in water pipes are noticed in the spring and summer months, when the humidity and heat in the atmosphere increase. Most of the time, when homeowners detect these signs in their living spaces, they are unable to pinpoint the cause. While they feel that the problem is in the heating or air conditioning of the house, the real problem is wet crawl spaces.

It is for this reason that one needs to be educated about the possible conditions that can arise in the crawl space. Among these conditions, the most common one that every other homeowner can relate to is the flooding of the crawl space with leaked water or moisture from outside air.

When you purchase a home, you make sure that the exterior and interior walls are painted and made ‘leak proof’ so that the inside of a home can be a safe place to live. However, did you think about waterproofing the crawlspace as well?

Waterproofing Crawl Space Walls In Three Easy Steps

What can be done to avoid this problem? Even though crawl space waterproofing sounds difficult and daunting, it is a rather simple process that should be implemented regardless of whether your crawlspace has flooded or is prone to moisture build up.

Take a look at the following three steps that are part of the home waterproofing system implemented in thousands of homes across the country.

1. Grade an Exterior Slope

Attacking the root cause of the problem is the best way to waterproof the crawl space. Since water seepage from the external foundation is the reason for moisture build up, grading a steep slope on the outside where water collects is a great option.

Pick a spot on the outside of the foundation where water normally collects. Start digging a slope and make sure it is at least ½ inch per foot. This will allow the water to drain quickly without being absorbed into the basement. Solidify the drainage with cement or any other material that will last longer.

2. Wall Proofing

The next phase is to check the interior of the crawl space. In here, you will need to seal the walls using a material that is waterproof. There are two ways to waterproof the inside walls, namely Negative Waterproofing and Positive Waterproofing.

Negative Waterproofing means sealing the walls from inside. The best and most economical way to do so is with a quick-drying agent like Drylock. Once applied, this material seeps into the small holes and cracks that are otherwise invisible to the naked eye.

Positive Waterproofing, on the other hand, is done on the exterior of the crawl space walls. First, dig a trench along these walls, all around the house. Clean the dirt from the walls and then apply a waterproof membrane all over them. While this method is more expensive, the reason it should be left to the professionals is that Positive Waterproofing materials available at retail stores are not top quality.

3. Ground Penetration

Lastly, you will seal the walls and the ground of the crawl space. This can be done by gluing vapor barrier sheets all over the walls and the floor. When you spread the sheets, make sure you cover every inch by overlapping two sheets at the corners and seams to stop water vapors from entering.

It is recommended that instead of using regular plastic sheets, one should invest in sheets that are designed specifically for this purpose to ensure a job well done. If you want to know more about our South Jersey drainage services or waterproofing in South Jersey, you can call us at (856) 310-1390 or email us at almand.bros@outlook.com.