Crawl spaces seem like a basement, which are great places to store things. They are out of sight and out of mind. With the extra space, people feel like they can store boxes of decorations, lawn equipment, even containers in their crawl space.
Before you store items in your crawl space, you need to know where you can store things, what kind of items will be damaged, and what type of crawl space you have. Consider these factors when deciding whether or not you can store items in your crawl space.
Vented crawl spaces are not ideal for storing items. Boxes, papers, photographs, and indoor items, should never be stored anywhere other than encapsulated crawl spaces. Mold, insects, humidity, and animals gain access through the openings. Encapsulated crawl spaces keep the space dry and animal-free. Dirt floor crawl spaces should not store anything other than items you keep outdoors. If you decide to store outside hardware in the concrete or dirt, check your inventory regularly for rust or rot.
Boxes with papers, documents, photos, and fabric items should never be stored in a crawl space. Encapsulated crawl spaces will delay decay, but these items fair better in the attic or your home’s storage closets. Use plastic containers to avoid moisture intrusion. Avoid storing fabrics unless vacuum packed with industrial-grade plastic. Plastic outdoor items, such as pool toys, resist mold in encapsulated areas. Cleaning them regularly with a mold-resistant solution prevents the build-up of mildew. Use caution when storing sharp, rough, or hard objects in encapsulated areas. Metal and even wood can rip or scratch your expensive encapsulation. Check wood items regularly for moisture. Never store wood in an unencapsulated crawl space as termites love this.
When you store items in your crawl space, ensure that you give plenty of space to air vents, pipes, ducts, and gas lines. Leaving space prevents damage to your belongings or dangerous accidents. You do not want to close off your AC or start a house fire. Leave room between any lights and your storage items. Crawl spaces typically have old light fixtures that heat up quickly and can catch fire to objects under the house. Make sure to turn off your crawl space lights. Check your crawl space and your stored belongings regularly for maintenance.
Encapsulation ensures that you seal unwanted moisture out of your crawl space. Protecting your home, belongings, and family is the priority. Practice safe storage, and place safety first. If you are looking for encapsulation services in Eastern North Carolina, contact Atlantic Foundation for your next project.
*Disclaimer-All recommendations and DIY projects on Atlantic Foundation are at your own risk. Please approach with caution and speak with professionals before you make any changes to your home. Atlantic foundation does not guarantee you, your place of residence, or your property’s safety. These are suggestions and not guaranteed. Death, injury, and property loss are possible with any DIY activity. We accept no responsibility as we have listed all the risks associated with DIY projects.
Converting Your Crawl Space into a Storage Area (Quick Guide) – Bob Vila
Don’t Crawl in the Dark! Turn Your Crawl Space Into Usable Space | Best Pick Reports
10 Things You Should Never Store in Your Basement or Crawl Space (familyhandyman.com)
Items You Can Safely Place in Crawl Space Storage (Easy List) – Clean Attic & Crawl (localinsulationpros.com)