Crawl space vents are openings in the wall which allow air movement. They’re often recommended to reduce radon levels. Your options will depend on your local climate, local regulations, and the design of the foundation.
These portals allow fresh air to get in the crawl space to “dry out” moisture and keep it from getting mold and related problems or providing a place rats or mice can call home. If they are open or you have an open or loose door, you may also find dead insects and other critters in your crawlspace.
Proper crawl space ventilation is key to solving basement moisture problems.
Often, crawl space door and crawl space vents are overlooked, and can be entry points for pests, or if humidity is not controlled, the stage is set for moisture damage to occur.
They can be used to provide a foundation with passive ventilation or combined with a fan-powered ventilator for maximum effectiveness.
They’re required by most building codes and are commonly constructed of pressed or cast aluminum or plastic.
Crawl space vents are supposed to prevent moisture problems, based on the assumption that dry fresh air entering through vents on one side of the house would push out moist air on the other side.
In a humid climate like Alabama’s, crawlspace vents can let in more moisture than they let out, leading to mold and rot problems. Moist air coming through them can carry mold spores and musty odors, creating the ideal environment for pests and insects, as well as wood rot.
In some cases, crawlspace vents can even increase the humidity level and lead to condensation on cool surfaces within, such as metal and wood.
Closing or covering your crawl space vents during the cold months can help prevent pipes from freezing and prevent your crawlspace from getting as cold as it is outside. Automatic vents are designed to open and close based on the ambient temperature.
Crawl Space Vents for Flood Safety
Crawl space vents can help protect homes in special flood hazard areas from damage caused by floods by allowing for automatic entry and exit of flood waters.
They’re designed to balance the force on both sides of the walls to prevent foundation walls from collapsing due to excess pressure on the outside.
Open mesh crawlspace vents can clog during a flood and cause pressure to build up and potentially damage the foundation.
With the creation of energy-efficient homes that are better sealed off from the environment, crawl space ventilation has become an issue more than ever.Allied Foundation and Crawl Space will make the proper recommendations for what type of crawl space ventilation will be needed. Give us a call today at (256) 580-3210.