crawl space foundationCrawl spaces where used in construction design to save money. Foundations were made shorter which meant less concrete, less excavation and shorter support columns. Sometimes they were used as a dumping area for construction site debris. Occasionally a crawl space would have the raw earth covered by a layer of stone and sometimes a sheet of 6 mil visqueen would be used to hide water and earth. Vents were installed in the foundation to let hot humid air out in the summer and to prevent cold air from entering in the winter.  The bad news, the Chicago area has hot and humid summers. Crawl spaces also become home to many insects; spiders, ants, centipedes and many other disgusting creatures. The crawl space will also become homes to mice and rats.

More bad news; homes withcrawl space vents crawl spaces are the least energy efficient homes built. They have cold floors in the winter and in the summer crawl spaces become breeding grounds all different types of molds and other allergens that become airborne and enter the living space where your family actually breathes these toxins and makes your air conditioner work extra hard to cool your home. Does any of your family members have allergies? The cause could be your crawl space.

Best Methods in Crawl Space Waterproofing

Almost all crawl spaces have water issues which not only breeds mold as mentioned but also can rot sill plates, support columns and floor joists. I have even seen the humidity so high that it buckled expensive oak floors beyond repair. Water or hidden water creates a musty, moldy smell.  When a crawl space has duct work in the crawl the odor along with radon, mold spores and many other nasty particles get distributed throughout the home and becomes a part of the air you and your family breathes. unfinished crawl spaceMany crawl spaces were built without a concrete floor. They are typically dirt, gravel, sand, and even stone. When a crawl space is built like this water gets inside your home and causes problems. Unfortunately, most home owners do not go into their crawl space very often thus they do not see the water that causes the deterioration of the support beams, wood flooring, sill plates and insulation if there is any at all. When the water sits in an enclosed area like a crawl space mold and mildew are growing. Typically your ventilation system is located in the crawl space and when there is mold down there the mold spores travel through the house. Radon is another major problem that is associated with an unfinished crawl space in Illinois. There is a very high radon gas level in Illinois and having an exposed surface inside a home simply allows the gasses to flow freely throughout the house.

We Have A Crawl Space Waterproofing Solution

We can solve ALL these problems. Concrete Crawlspaces Corp. is here to help turn your dirty unsafe crawl space into a safe space with usable storage area (although nobody can say that your crawl space will never get water because of power outages, failed sump pumps and pure acts of Mother Nature). All items stored in the crawl space should be still put in plastic or rubber totes. Our Crawl Space Encapsulation system will protect your home and lower your energy costs! Our crawl space system is consistent with current building codes and regulations. We rebuild your crawl space how it should have been built when the home was constructed.

First of all, a crawl space should have been built with the same considerations and codes that a basement utilizes. Have you ever seen a basement with vents to let in hot and cold air? A crawl space should have had a french drain with a sump pump to manage the water. A crawl space should have been built with a vapor barrier below 4 inches of concrete. The space should have been properly insulated like the rest of the house and the air should have been conditioned to have nice warm floors in the winter and easily conditioned air in the summer which would mean lower energy costs.

Our Crawl Space Waterproofing Process

The first step to waterproofing your crawl space is the removal of debris. Everything that is in the crawl space that should not be there is removed. Next we trench the perimeter of the crawl space to install a pit, pump and drain tile, the drain tile system is a key factor when waterproofing a crawl space. The crawl space is inspected for foundation cracks and if any are found we seal them with a 2 part epoxy and polyurethane foam injection. We surround the drain tile with lava rock which absorbs the disturbed sediment caused by trenching and connect it to the sealed pit with a sump pump inside. Drain board is installed up the walls above grade where possible and lays over the newly installed drain tile. Next we level off the dirt, sand, or stone floor and place a 10 mil plastic, a true vapor barrier. This ensures that if hydro-static pressure were to occur the water will be directed to the drain tile and then to the sump basin when the ½ HP Sump Pump ejects from the home. Then we pour 4 inches of concrete. The concrete is smoothed off with a hand float finish. The weight of the concrete and the underlying 10 mil vapor barrier forces the water to the drain tile. Once the concrete dries we offer closed cell spray foam which will completely encapsulate the crawl space. Without the spray foam the system is not completely sealed and can still let humidity, mold spores and other allergens into the living space of the home.  Once again, without a completely sealed system radon systems will not work.

spray foam crawl spaceConcrete Finished CrawlspaceThis is how a crawl space should be waterproofed. Our method is the only method that will not break down over time and Concrete Crawlspaces Corp. gives a lifetime transferable warranty. Give us a call today for details or you can simply request a free estimate online! You will be happy you choose Concrete Crawlspaces Corp.