Many of the problems in the crawl space, including problems you can attribute to the stack effect, have to do with moisture in your crawl space. So where does all that moisture come from? These are the most common sources of moisture in a crawl space.
Open Crawl Space Vents
Far and away the most common source of crawl space moisture is open crawl space vents. Unfortunately, it’s almost unavoidable to experience high levels of crawl space moisture if you have crawl space vents. Most homes with open crawl space vents have very high levels of moisture, which can easily lead to mold, mildew, high electric bills, and a variety of other potential concerns.
Back in the day, people used to believe open crawl space vents were actually better at avoiding moisture. The idea was that the open vents would “air out” the crawl space, thus bringing out moisture. However, the fact is that crawl space vents introduce air of different temperatures to each other, and that’s a recipe for condensation and other disasters.
Dirt Crawl Spaces
Many homes have dirt crawl spaces because they’re cheaper than concrete crawl spaces. However, they also have many more issues. One of the biggest problems dirt crawl spaces tend to introduce into a home is the problem of significant crawl space moisture.
Even if your dirt crawl space looks dry from the top, you can never be fully sure whether it’s hiding a huge amount of moisture. Moisture in the earth stretches down a substantial way, which means it can hide away until you least expect it. After days, weeks, or months, your crawl space will be wet for seemingly no reason.
Leaks and Plumbing Problems
It’s also possible, if not likely, to have crawl space moisture problems because you’re experiencing some sort of leak. Most of the time, this happens because homeowners haven’t had a look down at their crawl space, because it’s often easy to notice as soon as you look at the crawl space as a whole.
These leaks and plumbing problems cause two problems. Obviously, the leaks and plumbing problems are a threat to your crawl space’s health. It’s important to fix them to make your crawl space healthier. However, this is also a problem because you’re likely to spend much more on your water bill, and because wasting water is never a good thing.