Common Crawl Space Problems in Older Homes

Crawl space problems pop up all the time, especially in older homes. There are many problems that can, and most likely will happen with any home over a period of time. In this article, you will learn about the most common crawl space problems in older homes.


Moisture is one of the most common crawl space problems. Moisture can cause wetness, smells, and even mold. When water is in your crawl space, it will evaporate and seep through your insulation and the rest of your home, which creates the potential for mold to travel throughout your house. Here are some of the ways moisture can affect your crawl space:

  • Open Crawl Space Vents– Open crawl space vents let in moisture, which allows the environment to create wood rot, mold, mildew, and dust mites.
  • Dirt- Every crawl space will have exposed dirt. Unfortunately, the dirt will absorb moisture, then dry and send the moisture throughout your house. This will change the humidity and potentially add to your energy bill.
  • Weather- The weather elements are one of the biggest contributors to moisture crawl space problems. If you suffer from rain and humidity in your area, they will cause major issues in your crawl space.

House Settling

Crawl space problems can also be caused by your house settling. A house will settle when the soil underneath can’t support the weight of the house anymore. This can cause many issues with your crawl space. Poor preparation and moisture are the biggest reasons of this happening. Here are some other reasons house settling may occur:

  • Poor Drainage- When your home has little to no drainage system, then the water from your gutters and roof will end up around your foundation. The soil expands due to the water, and it pushes against your crawl space foundation, creating cracks.
  • Plumbing Leaks- You probably didn’t think that a plumbing leak could lead to your house settling, but it can. When you have a leak inside of your home from plumbing, it can easily spread to your crawl space. Cracks in pipes or water lines from your home harm your foundation and create water damage in your crawl space.

 Proper Construction

The construction of the foundation, floor joists, and support beams of your home can play a major role in dealing with crawl space problems. If the support pier columns aren’t spaced properly, the floor joists will sag, which results in squeaky, uneven, and sagging floors. Some crawl space foundations let in more water and air, which causes problems. Concrete block is cheap but will let in the most moisture, whereas poured concrete is better and won’t cause issues unless there are cracks or holes.

Now you are aware of common crawl space problems in older homes. Remember to keep out moisture, as it can create mold and other issues. Also, remember to check settling issues and have the best foundation for your home. Keeping these issues in check will reduce the number of crawl space problems you deal with.

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