What I'm Seeing Now

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How Deep Does The Water Get At Times In This Crawl Space?

How deep does the water get at times in this crawl space?

I report, you decide.

All around the foundation wall there was staining consistent with the staining you see here.

You can see from the different lines that the water level happens regularly, and at different heights.

It had not rained in many days previous to this inspection, but there were still puddles here and there on top of the plastic vapor retarder, dried stains on the plastic from other puddles, and very soft spots all over underneath.

This is a crawl space that gets very wet, and often!  And apparently this has gone mostly unnoticed, and for years.  The grading and drainage outside this house was not good, although on one side there were very recent changes to two downspouts.

This continued water infestation will contribute to an increase in relative humidity levels in this crawl space, levels that may often be higher than the relative humidity outdoors, and in turn contribute to the relative humidity inside the house.

That can affect and cause many things including:  the interior air quality, the function of the insulation under the floor (in this house there was very little insulation under the floor!), the humidity inside the house, the attraction and amplification of mold, fungi and yeast development, the attraction of mites that feed on fungi, die and then become food for further fungi development, the invitation to termites and other wood-destroying insects, other wood-destroying micro-organisms, damage to paint and wallpaper inside the house, and even rot in certain structural materials like wood beams.

My recommendation:  grading and drainage is a crucial aspect of landscaping and home maintenance.  Grading is often neglected!  Downspouts and sump pumps MUST  discharge water well away from the house, and onto areas that are inclined away from the house ideally at 1/2" per foot.  Water is most damaging, and THE  killer of houses inside and out.

 

 

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560

www.jaymarinspect.com


Comment balloon 12 commentsJay Markanich • December 30 2015 03:09AM

Comments

Scary picture and thought that the water has intruded in the past to that level!

Posted by Susan Laxson CRS, Local Knowledge & Global Network (HomeSmart Professionals) over 3 years ago

Good morning, Jay Markanich I'd install an underground drain and run it out to daylight if that were my house.....

Posted by Barbara Todaro, Marketing Agent for The Todaro Team (RE/MAX Executive Realty ) over 3 years ago

Susan - this appears to have been happening over and over for many years!

Barbara - water getting in from around the house must be stopped.  A drain inside helps, but the problem is not solved.

A lot of water looked to be getting in from this corner.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

For a minute, I thought that was an alfresco painting.  Yes, that can be a recipe for disaster.  If they have hardwood above, I'm guessing tons of gaps.

Posted by Women of Westchester Working Together, Women helping Women get ahead (Women of Westchester Working Together) over 3 years ago

Good morning Jay,

As you said I would hate to see what the wood looks like.

Make yourself a great day.

Posted by Raymond E. Camp, Licensed Real Estate Salesperson Greater Rochester (Howard Hanna Real Estate Services) over 3 years ago

Good morning Jay! The title indicated that something bad was coming! Enjoy your day

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker - Retired (Wayne M Martin) over 3 years ago

Why do I need gutters they ask...

Posted by Fred Hernden, CMI, Albuquerque area Master Inspector (Superior Home Inspections - Greater Albuquerque Area) over 3 years ago

Debbie - I have never met that painter (Al?) but he must have an interesting style.  The flooring is all carpet and vinyl.

The wood was, um, stressed Raymond!

Wayne - depends on your point of view.  I think the frogs like the space.

Fred - badges, we don't need no stinkin' badges!  Or something like that.

 

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

I can only imagine the damage the humid air is having on the insulation and joists.  Creating an invitation to termites down the road.

Posted by Stephen Weakley (Nationwide Mortgage Services) over 3 years ago

Any invitation is an invitation indeed, Stephen.  They are attracted to moisture!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

If water is coming in and up that high in "normal" times, it sounds like a hard prolonged rain could flood the interior of the house Jay Markanich 

Posted by DEANNA EARLY - - ( NMLS # 268590 ), Highest Ranked Mortgage Loan Originator Virginia (American National Bank & Trust) over 3 years ago

The stain doesn't get higher than you see Deanna, but I wasn't there after a 40 day and 40 night rain!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

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