Your crawl space has more control over the health of your home than you might think. When, though, is the right time to invest in a crawl space inspection?
What Are The Benefits Of A Crawl Space Inspection?
Your crawl space is a pretty small part of your home, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t important. If you let the care and keeping of your crawl space get away from you, you may quickly find yourself dealing with a myriad of problems. Untreated damage in your crawl space can lead to:
- Insect infestations
- Excessive moisture
- Mold growth
- Foundation cracks
- Leftover asbestos or hazardous materials
- Bowing framework
- Poor ventilation
- Failing vapor barriers
- Wiring malfunctions
When’s The Best Time For A Crawl Space Inspection?
There’s no set point by which a homeowner needs to have their crawl space inspected. That said, you shouldn’t assume that your crawl space is well-protected when you first move into a new home.
If you live in an area that sees a significant amount of rain on a yearly basis, it’s best to call an inspector out to your property within your first three months of living there. During this time, you’ll be able to save up for potential repairs. Even if you live in an area that doesn’t see much precipitation, you’ll ideally want to have had a crawl space inspection within a year of moving into your new home.
That said, if you’re noticing signs of damage throughout your crawl space and home, you’ll want to schedule an inspection much sooner. Some examples of obvious damage include:
- Warping door frames
- Misted windows
- Unpleasant smells throughout your home
- Higher water or electric bills than usual
- Decreased water pressure throughout your home
- Insects or unwanted animal invaders
What Do Crawl Space Inspectors Look For?
Most inspectors break a crawl space inspection down into the following three phases:
- Early Inspection – Before an inspector will set foot into your crawl space, he’ll need to ensure that your entryway is up to code. At a minimum, the entry to your crawl space needs to be two feet wide and 18 inches tall. If an inspector notes that your entry is smaller than required or otherwise unsafe to use, you will fail your crawl space inspection immediately. You’ll need to have your entryway remodeled and reinforced before an inspector is able to move forward with his work.
- Superficial Inspection – If it’s safe to enter your crawl space, an inspector will take a look around to see if there’s anything immediately or obviously wrong. This means looking for mold clusters, warped wooden supports, a damaged vapor barrier, and so on. If an inspector spots any of these things or additional damage, including standing water, your crawl space will fail its inspection. However, you’ll be able to immediately discuss potential fixes with the inspector on-site. Inspectors in the St. Louis, MO, area will be able to provide you with a free quote on potential services, as well, allowing you to better plan for your future repairs.
- Full Inspection – If, after a superficial inspection, an inspector can’t identify anything wrong with your foundation, he’ll begin to take a closer look at all of your space’s nooks and crannies. During this phase, inspectors are looking for your crawl space’s weaker areas. In identifying what areas of your space are likely to allow moisture into your home, an inspector can help you prepare for the future by suggesting waterproofing measures for you to invest in.
You don’t have to panic if you fail your crawl space inspection. Inspectors, after all, come out to your property to help you better protect your home. If you do fail an inspection, you’ll be able to discuss potential solutions with the inspector on-site. That inspector or one of their peers will then return to your home after you’ve invested in repairs to ensure that your crawl space is as structurally sound as possible.
Are you worried about the state of your crawl space? Let the crawl space repair contractors in the St. Louis, MO, area take a look at your space. You’ll know what steps you have to take to better secure your home in little to no time at all.