Tuesday, June 1st, 2021 by Kristen Owenby
Master Services receives many questions about our service offerings, so we’ve established a Q&A page to keep them organized. We will be updating the page as needed, so stay tuned for more to come!
Can a crawlspace be insulated?
It's extremely important to insulate a crawlspace. A crawlspace without insulation impacts energy bills and comfort levels. A properly insulated crawlspace will reflect heat back inside, rather than letting it escape and increase energy costs. Traditional fiberglass insulation is vulnerable to moisture and mold, and insulation usually becomes sodden and "drips" from the ceiling. This is why fiberglass is no longer used by most contractors. Most reputable crawlspace repair companies will recommend not only insulating the area with suitable products, but installing an encapsulation system to ensure the space remains sanitary, dry, and healthy.
Can a crawlspace be used for storage?
Yes! A crawlspace can be used for storage if it has a sturdy, reliable encapsulation system in place. Most crawlspaces have dirt floors, increasing the possibility of moisture, mold, mildew, and pests. A sanitary encapsulation system creates a shield between the ground and the rest of the area, preventing water damage, minimizing mold, and creating extra storage room.
Boxes, sporting equipment, old toys—anything you store in a garage can be tucked neatly inside of an encapsulated crawlspace.
Can a crawlspace make you sick?
If enough mold is present in the crawlspace, then yes. Due to the "stack effect," moldy air rises and permeates the upstairs. If you've ever been in an old home, perhaps you noticed a musty smell in the air. This likely was mold that ascended into the upper levels of the house. While the smell is unpleasant enough, it's also unhealthy for people with asthma, allergies, and respiratory conditions.
If a crawlspace is moldy, it's probably filled with pests. As these critters die in the area, they create odors that mingle with the mold. This creates an unsanitary and unhealthy living environment.
How does a sump pump work?
Sump pumps are the best defense against basement (or crawlspace!) flooding. Along with a perimeter drainage system, a sump pump collects and directs water out of your below-grade space. Following flooding or heavy rain, a pressure sensor signals that water has exceeded a certain level. This triggers the sump pump, which sends the water to the perimeter drainage system. The drainage system empties out the water a few feet from your home’s foundation.
How much does basement waterproofing cost?
The cost of basement waterproofing varies and is unique to each home. One basement might require the "works" in waterproofing products, while another might need a single installation to keep it dry. Whatever the situation, financing options are available to help homeowners save money while maintaining a sanitary, dry basement.
Is basement waterproofing worth it?
Basement waterproofing is important in preventing mold, rot, and structural issues. If water is allowed to gather in a below-grade space, such as a basement or crawlspace, it creates the ideal environment for mold growth. Mold not only creates foul odors that rise into the rest of the home, but aggravates respiratory problems, allergies, and asthma for residents. Where there’s moisture and mold, rot usually follows. Rot eats away at wooden beams and weight-bearing joists. If the damage is extensive, it impacts the rest of the home by creating sloping and sagging floors, stuck doors and windows, cracks, and more. Basement waterproofing ensures that your home is protected from these problems.
Is foundation repair worth it?
Foundation problems include bowing walls, cracks, sinking settlement, uneven floors, and other structural irregularities. These issues only worsen over time, so it's not a wise idea to ignore them. What could be a simple repair often turns into a disruptive, costly excavation in a couple of years. When caught early, foundation problems usually can be permanently fixed... often within a day!
Should I encapsulate my crawlspace?
Encapsulation is the best way to keep crawlspaces dry, sanitary, and safe. Unencapsulated crawlspaces are vulnerable to moisture, mold, mildew, and pests. Moisture leads to mold, which attracts pests and creates disgusting smells that bother upstairs residents. As pests gather in the area, they eventually die, attracting even more critters. Moisture and mold also beget rot, which destroys wooden beams and joists that support the rest of the home. An encapsulation system protects against these dangers. A properly encapsulated crawlspace also provides extra storage space!
What is carbon fiber reinforcement?
Carbon fiber reinforcement is an ideal solution for bowed or damaged foundation walls. This method involves applying epoxy resin to 7-in. wide carbon fiber strapping, which is lightweight and conforms to any shape. After the mixture is applied, the carbon fiber is pressed against the wall. Once it cures, it provides strengthening and stabilization to the foundation wall. The straps easily can be concealed with a coat of paint, leaving little to no trace of the installation.
What is foundation repair?
Foundation repair involves installing products that support, bolster, or fortify structures. Due to settlement, houses often shift or sink, resulting in bowed walls, cracks, sinking floors, stuck doors and windows, and other issues.
Foundation repair products include wall anchors, jacks, wall braces, foundation and slab piers, and carbon fiber strapping. A reputable foundation repair company will provide a comprehensive inspection before recommending a specific product, since every structure has unique needs. If addressed early enough, most foundation problems can be permanently fixed. In many situations, the products can be installed within a day!
Why should I care if my sidewalk, driveway, or patio is sinking?
Concrete sinks, shifts, and cracks when soil beneath the slab is compacted or washed away by rain. As it settles, the slab often breaks or cracks. This not only creates an eyesore, but a tripping hazard... bad news for those with small children! In certain areas, homeowners are liable for injuries incurred by those who trip over an uneven or cracked sidewalk in front of their home.
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