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Crawl Space Repair

Out of sight, out of mind, right? That’s a dangerous attitude to take regarding your crawl space. Especially if anyone in the house suffers from asthma or allergies, the conditions in the crawl space could be contributing to sickness.

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Moisture in a crawl space causes mold and falling insulation. The CrawlSeal system prevents these issues.

If you rarely inspect your crawl space, you may notice moisture is building up or damaging that space. Humidity can go over 60%, and this is when you’ll start having problems. We encourage you to check the crawl space from time to time and measure the humidity levels. Keeping moisture in check will avert issues that could render the crawl space unusable.


However water gets into your crawl space – the ground, porous block walls, plumbing leaks, or open vents – any kind of leakage spells trouble for your home. Leaking, standing water in a damp, dark area is very attractive to pests, and wet fiberglass insulation is a breeding ground for mold. Water also can saturate wooden and metal supports, which leads to wood rot, rust, weakening support systems, and sagging floors.

Paired with water intrusion, high humidity is one of the biggest crawl space issues affecting homes. If humidity is above 50 percent, the best thing you can do is run a dehumidifier to keep it in check. 

Crawl spaces commonly have high relative humidity and moisture – the ideal conditions for mold growth, especially on organic materials like wood and insulation. Any moisture in a crawl space also may enter another part of the structure and contribute to mold growth there. Moisture can pass from a crawl space and into other areas through cracks in walls, floors and ceilings. (Source: EPA) 

You know how oppressive Ohio summertime humidity can feel. Your home is no stranger to this, either. When hot and humid air is vented into the crawl space during warm months, this can lead to sagging, soft, buckling floors above, as well as affect hardwood floors. 

You also know how cold the Ohio winters can get, and your house feels this pain too. Any cold wintertime air that is vented inside the crawl space will make above floors feel cold and causes the furnace to work even harder to keep your house warm and cozy. The more your furnace or air conditioner runs, the more money you are spending on utility bills. 

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    Have you noticed any of these issues in your crawl space or throughout your home? If so, it might be time to hire a professional crawl space contractor. Look at this checklist for some common crawl space symptoms: 

    • Musty odors or stale air 
    • Dampness or high humidity 
    • Mold or mildew 
    • Condensation on windows 
    • Leaking or standing water in the crawl space 
    • Interior drywall cracks 
    • Sagging, uneven or bouncy floors 
    • Wood rot 
    • Pest or rodent infestations 
    • Wet or failing crawl space insulation 
    • Open crawl space vents 
    • High energy bills 
    • Cold floors during winter 

    The day your home was built, your house already had a problem. The biggest culprit that leads to other issues is open crawl space vents. Building code traditionally has called for crawl space vents to be open for air drying purposes. However, this is an outdated, ineffective and harmful building practice. (Source: The Ohio Home Inspections Company

    Some “do it yourself” websites and resources still encourage this practice, but the reality is that having open crawl space vents is not safe for your home. Vents are like big flashing “open” signs that allow outside air, water and pests into the crawl space and ultimately into your home.   

    So, whatever is in your crawl space is in the rest of your home and affecting you and your family. This is because of what is known as the stack effect. 

    Whether or not your house has a fireplace and chimney, think of airflow in your home as having the pattern of a chimney. Air enters at the bottom, rises throughout the structure, and exits at the top. Air flows from areas of high pressure to areas of low pressure. When there is a greater difference between indoor and outdoor temperatures, the more significant this airflow becomes. (Source: Fine Homebuilding) 

    While you can’t see airflow, it could be helpful for you to see the stack effect in action. The Cold Climate Housing Research Center has several informational YouTube videos, including “Your Northern Home: Stack Effect” that illustrates the stack effect. 

    More than 50% of the air you breathe in your home comes from the crawl space. If mold is present in the crawl space, you and your loved ones likely are breathing in these unhealthy spores. 

    Here are a few questions we commonly hear from homeowners like you wondering what they should do about the issues they notice with their crawl space:  

    • Does my crawl space need insulation?  
    • Do I need a vapor barrier in my crawl space? 
    • Should you seal a crawl space?  
    • Will crawl space encapsulation lower my energy costs?  
    • Can you put a dehumidifier in a crawl space?  

    The answer to all of them is – you guessed it – YES!  

    All these measures will greatly improve the health and appearance of the crawl space, and lead to a safer home and healthier, happier family! 

    Now that you’ve learned more about your crawl space and what could be underneath your living area, aren’t you ready to say goodbye to these nasty conditions? You may never go into your crawl space, but there are so many reasons why it’s a good idea to remedy this area of your home to protect your family. 

    • Better Health and Quality of Life for Your Family — Everyone deserves to grow up and live in a safe and healthy home. By tackling any unhealthy conditions in your crawl space through proper waterproofing, dehumidification, encapsulation, and insulation, you are keeping mold, allergens and sickness at bay. The air quality of your home will be greatly improved, and so will the well-being of your family.
    • Improved Structural Integrity for Your Home — Rotting supports and sagging floors are not safe and could result in significant structural damage and safety hazards. By shoring up the support system in your home, you will have a more stable living environment for your family.
    • Improved Energy Efficiency Throughout Your House — By choosing proven crawl space encapsulation and insulation solutions, you could save between 30 and 50% on your energy bills! (Source: Clean Crawls)
    • You Gain a Functional Space in Your House — Not only will repairs like waterproofing, encapsulation and insulation create a healthier space, they also create a space that you can use in a whole new way. You’ll be able to use your crawl space to safety store items like holiday decorations and other belongings without the worry of any damage.
    • Positive Impact to Your Home’s Real Estate Value — There are a variety of factors that affect a home’s resale value, but things like structural integrity, water issues, and other problems are important areas you need to be aware of. It is important to disclose any known past or current damage when you prepare to sell your house. Ohio homeowners are required to complete the Residential Property Disclosure Form to the best of their knowledge. Some items and issues on the checklist include water intrusion, structural components, wood destroying insects, and basement and/or crawl space. (Source: Nolo

    After seeing the importance of having a healthier crawl space, now’s the time to act. You have a wealth of resources at your fingertips and there are many websites addressing crawl space repair. Many of them are DIY sources that spark ideas, and it may be tempting to head to your favorite hardware store to buy supplies and prepare for a crawl space overhaul. 

    But crawl space repair is not something you can tackle in a weekend. A lot can go wrong, which we explore in our blog, “The Worst Advice We’ve Ever Heard About Crawl Spaces.” We have seen a lot of problems result from fast fixes. Especially concerning real estate transactions, quick fixes can raise red flags. You’ll then have to spend more time and money to repair these issues. It’s best to leave these projects to professional contractors so the problems will be fixed correctly the first time around. 

    We encourage you to educate yourself to make the best decision and sound investment with trustworthy repair solutions from a reliable crawl space contractor. 

    It can be scary inviting someone you don’t know into your home for needed inspections and repairs. You’ve probably heard horror stories about working with contractors who didn’t complete their work or caused damage to an owner’s house. That’s why it’s important to research and investigate before choosing a contractor you can trust.  

    Popular Mechanics compiled an article with a list of 10 useful tips for selecting a reputable contractor: 

    • Go with Your Gut. The contractor will be in your home, so trust your instincts about his character.  
    • Make Sure the Contractor is Licensed to Work in Your Area, Bonded, and Insured. A contractor that has the proper licensing and insurance indicates credibility, knowledge, and trustworthiness. 
    • Pick a Contractor Who Specializes in Your Project Type. Experience through research, training, and hands-on work in the field matters. 
    • Have a Detailed Contract in Place Before Any Work Begins. Having detailed plans and everything in writing clearly spells out expectations. 
    • Find Out Who Will Be Performing the Work. Knowing exactly who will be coming to your home will give you peace of mind and confidence in the contractor. 
    • Give the Contractor Guidelines for Working In/Around Your Home. Let the company know of your preferences including arrival times and any off-limit areas of your home. 
    • Know What Your Responsibilities Are. If you need to move anything out of the way or need to plan for pet accommodations, it’s best to address that before the project starts. 
    • Ask About a Mechanic’s Lien. Check on the contractor’s legal status before signing anything. 
    • Look at Work Samples. This lets you see the quality of the work, and it might give you ideas for your own project. 
    • Think Locally. Support the local companies that have been in business and in the community for a long time. 

    We at Ohio Basement Authority are proud to meet and exceed expectations on these points. But don’t take it from us. Our reviews from customers speak for themselves about our company, our work, and our crawl space projects. You also can learn more about our team through our About Us page. 

    Our experienced and trusted team is ready and eager to help you create a safer and healthier home! Once you contact us to discuss your crawl space issues with our customer care team, we will schedule an appointment for you for a free inspection and estimate with one of our certified field inspectors.  

    Here’s what you can expect during this consultation. The inspector will: 

    • Perform a complete evaluation of your home’s interior and exterior. This includes going into the crawl space to check the condition of the area including any water intrusion, damage, pests, etc. 
    • Discuss his findings with you, as well as your goals with a repair project. 
    • Offer customized solutions that best fit your repair needs. 
    • Provide you with a proposal of recommended solutions before leaving your house.
    • Discuss payment and financing options with you. 

    The next step, should you choose to work with us, is scheduling your project with one of our installation crews. The crew will use tested and proven solutions to address all your crawl space repair needs. The crew also will treat your home with the utmost care and will not stop until you are completely satisfied with the work. If anything comes up afterwards, you can trust us to respond and not leave you hanging. We offer emergency service, as well as an annual crawl space maintenance program to ensure the solutions we installed continue to properly work in protecting your home. 

    Here are ways we address your crawl space issues, as highlighted in our “Crawl Space Repair Checklist” blog: 

    • Waterproofing — If leaking or standing water is a problem in your crawl space, we can address that with a perimeter drainage system. Non-clogging CrawlDrain™ is specially designed to sit in the crawl space floor to collect water from the walls and floor, all while filtering out dirt and sediment.

      This water is then directed to a sump pump system to be pumped out of the crawl space. Any of our SafeDri™ systems can be installed, but the SafeDri™ Pro Crawl Space Sump Pump specifically is compatible with our complete crawl space vapor barrier system. A sump pump will also help prevent a flooded crawl space. A FreezeGuard® also can be attached to the exterior sump pump discharge line to prevent flooding from frozen or blocked lines.
    • Encapsulation — It is important to seal your crawl space from the ground and exterior conditions. The CrawlSeal™ encapsulation system is used to completely isolate the crawl space environment from the earth. This liner, similar to swimming pool liner, is a moisture and vapor barrier, and it is completely waterproof and mold resistant. CrawlSeal™ is extremely durable, puncture-resistant and tough enough to crawl on. It is a true 20-mil liner rated above 25-mil strength at the seams, and it is over three times the thickness of builder’s grade liner.

      Drainage matting can be placed on the crawl space floor before encapsulating to further enhance the strength of CrawlSeal™, as well as help direct water to the perimeter CrawlDrain™ system.

      It also is important to have properly sealed crawl space vents and doors to prevent outside air, water and pests from entering the crawl space. Our durable vent covers install quickly and attach mechanically to form an airtight bond.
    • Insulation — Instead of soft batt insulation that can easily fall off crawl space walls and harbor mold, rigid ExTremeBloc™ panels are the better alternative. These panels are moisture resistant, and an integrated termiticide is added to deter termites below grade. CrawlSeal™ also helps insulate the crawl space, and spray foam can be added to rim joists to seal gaps around the perimeter of your foundation. These insulation methods help prevent wood rot and enable termite treatments.

      Your crawl space and home also will greatly benefit from winterization projects!
    • Dehumidification — One of the best things you can do for your crawl space is keep the air dry. Our powerful, energy-efficient low-profile crawl space dehumidifier cleans and filters the air under your house, controls moisture and humidity, and reduces odors and potential mold growth.

      The dehumidifier also self-drains so you don’t need to worry about emptying any buckets or reservoirs like with typical dehumidifiers. We can direct the unit to drain into the perimeter drainage or sump pump system or install a condensate pump
    • Structural Reinforcement — Wooden floor supports often fail in wet and humid crawl space environments. But our sturdy IntelliJacks™ are made of galvanized steel, making them more reliable supports that can stabilize and lift sagging floors and floor joists back to level.
    • Access Points — Typical crawl space doors and access points or wells are wooden or metal, and they can easily rot and rust when exposed to outdoor elements. But our durable plastic crawl space doors and access wells are safe and sturdy.

    Because we are committed to you and your health and safety, we only use the very best solutions to repair and protect your crawl space and home. Our products are manufactured right here in the United States. They are tested and proven to effectively keep water and pests out of your crawl space for a safer and healthier home for you and your family. All these solutions also are designed to work together to give you the most bang for your buck and prevent any further problems. 

    Cheaper quick fixes like generic plastic floor liners, light duty jack posts, and wooden access doors are only temporary bandages that will not address the problem. 

    So, don’t waste your time and money on fast fixes. Fix it right the first time. You need quality permanent solutions like the ones we install in homes every day. We use reliable, custom equipment and state-of-the-art technology to install these various systems. 

    This is one of the most common questions we hear from homeowners. And rightly so.  

    According to Home Advisor’s State of Home Spending Report, consumer spending on home improvement increased significantly – rising 17% – from April 2018 to April 2019, with average home improvement spending totaling $7,560 in 2018. Home improvement rather than home maintenance has been the focus for homeowners who want to replace or repair damage, defects and decay. 

    All this being said, it is difficult to give an actual cost of crawl space repair. We understand how frustrating it is to not get an exact number or ballpark figure when you contact our office. But there are so many factors to consider with repair projects.  

    First off, it’s important for one of our inspectors to physically visit your house and look at the crawl space. It’s not fair to you to just give a ballpark estimate without seeing what we’re dealing with. 

    The cost also depends on specifics like the square footage to determine how much material will be used, as well as the extent of any damage. 

    Our solutions are not “one size fits all” fixes. Every home is different, and each project requires different solutions. We can customize these solutions to be specific to your repair needs. So, what worked for a friend or family member might not necessarily be what your home needs. 

    Our inspectors also will take your repair goals and budget into consideration, and they can discuss various payment and financing options with you. We will not try to slap a quick bandage on the problems with sub-standard products or push you to buy unnecessary items. Crawl space cleaning (mold, wet falling insulation, and whatever the years have ‘given’ to your crawl space) structural soundness, safety, and security are our goal – your crawl space becomes ours and we take tremendous pride in our work. 

    When you choose to work with the Ohio Basement Authority team, what you are really investing in is your home’s safety, your family’s health, and your peace of mind.

    When you’re searching for a crawl space expert, crawl space services, or crawl space repair near me, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We are here to assist with protecting your most significant investment – your home – and we look forward to helping create a safer and healthier living environment for you and your family! 

    Serving Greater Columbus, Cincinnati, Dayton, and Northern Kentucky

    Cincinnati Office

    1270 Hillsmith Dr.
    Cincinnati, OH 45215

    Columbus Office
    2421 McGaw Rd.
    Obetz, OH 43207