**Disclaimer: before starting this project, consult with a professional and make sure having a vented crawl space door such as this is best suited for your type of home. Some houses need closed crawl space doors and other work with vented--it all depends!
Owning a home can be expensive if not regularly maintained and cared for--especially if you have a crawlspace underneath your home. A crawl space is the area underneath your home where insulation and piping are located and it can also serve as extra protection against flooding.
It's very important to make sure that entries into your crawl space are sealed off properly to protect against rats, mice and other rodents from getting in and causing all sorts of problems. A hardware cloth cover is great because it keeps rodents out while also maintaining a steady air flow underneath the house. Air flow throughout the crawl space is important because if air is trapped and you live in a humid climate, moisture problems could occur.
So, this leads us to our project of how to make this easy crawl space door for your home!
Project Duration: 1- 1.5 hour
Skill Level: Easy
Garden Craft Hardware Cloth (make sure to get the 1/4 opening)
6 ft. x 3 ft. boards of wood (depending on the size of your opening, measure accordingly)
Screwdriver + screws
Step 1: Measure Your Frame and Cut Boards
The first step is to measure your crawl space and see how much wood and hardware cloth you will need. When measuring, make sure to measure the inside of the opening so that you can comfortably fit the door inside the crawl space area and it's not too large. Our crawl space measures 41 in. x 14.5 in. so we bought two 6ft. x 3ft. boards and cut them in two 41 in. pieces and 14.5 in. pieces.
Then we laid out the smaller pieces on the back of the frame to verify everything lined up and then sanded the edges down a little bit so they were smooth. Make sure to NOT screw your pieces of wood together yet!
Step 2: Staple Hardware Cloth to Frame
Next, once you have your frame laid out, carefully remove the smaller pieces of wood and staple gun the hardware cloth to the back of the frame. We chose to go with 1/4 in hardware cloth because the smaller openings make it harder for rats and other rodents to chew through.
Make sure to pull your hardware cloth taunt across the frame and cut away any excess edges.
Step 3: Screw the Back of the Frame Together
Now that you have your hardware cloth attached to the back of the top and bottom boards, you will attach the side boards to the back. Line up your board and make a mark with a pencil of where you want to drill your hope. Then clamp the wood and pre-drill the holes into the wood where you have marked them.
Then flip over and--voila! You can choose to paint the wood or stain it but we liked the natural look of the wood and will probably add a clear protectant coat so it can weather the elements and moisture.
Wow--what a difference a little wood and hardware cloth can make!