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Day 25 – Do You Open or Close Crawlspace Vents

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31 Days of Handy Home Fixes | Pretty Handy Girl

Do you leave your crawlspace vents open or closed? The great debate ends now.

Do You Open or Close Crawlspace Vents | Pretty Handy Girl

If you guessed open, you are right. If you guessed closed, you are also right!

Crawlspace vents should be opened in the spring and closed in the fall. The reason being that you want to preserve any heat in your crawlspace in the winter. This will help protect your water pipes from freezing and keep your home a little cozier on those cold days.  Once spring arrives, go ahead and open the vents to allow better air flow in the crawlspace and to eliminate moisture build up.

Adjusting the vents should take you 5-10 minutes total.

Do You Open or Close Crawlspace Vents | Pretty Handy Girl

Usually, they will slide freely open and closed with your own hand strength.

Do You Open or Close Crawlspace Vents | Pretty Handy Girl

Occasionally you’ll run into a stubborn vent that might be rusty or stuck.  Use pliers or a wrench to grab the vent tab as close to the base as possible and gently tap on the wrench with a hammer.

Do You Open or Close Crawlspace Vents | Pretty Handy Girl

The only time you shouldn’t close your vents is if you have high radon; an appliance that can build up fumes; or excessive water and moisture problems. If you have these issues, you have bigger problems than worrying about your vents being opened or closed. Consult with an expert to remedy those situations immediately.


7 replies
  1. joyce
    joyce says:

    I just want to let you know that I thoroughly enjoy your posts. each and every one. I have learned a lot from you and since I am living on my own, I really appreciate all your tips. So keep on tipping, I need all the help I can get, esspecially ones I can understand. thanks, joyce

  2. Jen Y
    Jen Y says:

    Did you know that you can install vents that open & close automatically? Most of ours we have to close manually buit because of a dampness issue we had more vents installed & discovered these. Pretty cool

  3. Jen Y
    Jen Y says:

    We kept our old vents & just open them manually but if you’re installing new anyway I think the cost is comparable. Anything I don’t have to remember to do as I age is good to me. 🙂

  4. sharae wolf
    sharae wolf says:

    Greetings handy ladies! Loving this site and thank you for not being afraid to get your hands out of the manicure bowl. Now…. I am a very handy woman from maintaining all cars, trucks and our motorcycles, screening in our entire wrap around deck, etc. blah, blah, blah. But, I have no idea how to check if our heat pump is running at full capacity as we have always had natural gas. We moved into a log home last year that has a large crawl space which is deep enough to walk upright in and our bedroom does not get above 50 degrees in the winter and we keep the heater at 69 degrees and run the fireplace. The remainder of the house is toasty but I am not going to freeze again this winter. HELP..signed, popsickle with a hammer.


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  1. […] 13. Know when your crawlspace vents should be open or closed. […]

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