Pier & Beam Crawl Space
Imagine sitting in your house enjoying a meal, and then suddenly you feel the whole foundation shifting and your house sinking into the ground! This is not that far from reality though. The damage that can happen because of unattended crawl spaces can be quite severe. This is why a professional pier & beam crawl space inspection is important.
What is the pier & beam crawl space?
Before the availability of large quantity of concrete, most houses were built on pier & beam foundations. Basically, the foundation consists of beams resting on vertical piers which are driven into the ground. The piers are either made wholly of concrete or of wood with concrete.
They extend into the ground at different depths. The beams support the understructure where the house sits. The area that is between the understructure of the house and the ground is enclosed and it forms a crawl space.
Why should the pier & beam crawl space be inspected?
The pier & beam structure is a great foundation. However, problems start when there is standing water inside the crawl space. Water will damage the foundation and ultimately damage the house. The water softens the ground and earth under the piers. This would result in the piers sinking, and then the beams will deflect. In the end, the floors will be distorted. If the soil is clay based, then the water will make it swell and this will tilt the piers or shift them. If the pier moves, the understructure will be damaged. In addition, any water leak can cause the wood to rot. This will weaken the structure. Wood can also rot because of high humidity.
You won’t always notice the signs of the damage of the crawl space within the house. You won’t necessarily see cracks in the drywall or any foundation issues. That is why inspecting the pier & beam crawl space is necessary to deal with any problem and save time and money.
What do we inspect in the crawl space under the house?
While under the house, we will check if the crawl space has adequate ventilation. Also, we will check for the moisture level in the soil. Moisture can be caused by either standing water, natural water movement in the soil, or plumbing leaks.
Soil moisture can cause problems such as mold growth and corrosion of metal, so it’s best to deal with it. We will also check for any damaged masonry wall or piers, as well as check the temporary supports and document them to recommend permanent fixes. We observe the condition of the floor framing and the mechanical connections to the structure. We look for evidence of mold. Any area that looks like mold is sampled and evaluated. We take note of the vapor barrier and insulation, and we examine the plumbing, electrical, and HVAC ducts. We also look for any evidence of animal damage as well as things that shouldn’t be in the crawl space.
Why are we the best?
We simply provide the highest quality inspection. We are committed to our clients, and we provide superior service. We have a professional, responsible, and competent team ready to serve your home inspection needs.