Thursday, November 17th, 2022 by Hannah Holland
Quick. Guess this riddle: It's underneath your house. It's dark, it's cold, it's infested with spiders, and it's...wet?
It's your crawl space! We'll cut to the chase: Dirt crawl spaces are not good for you. They're prone to moisture and humidity which can cause serious structural problems and bad air quality throughout your home.
If you're asking yourself, how do I fix it?! Then, you're in the right place. The best way to keep moisture out of your crawl space is with crawl space encapsulation. In this blog, we'll go over everything you need to know about crawl space encapsulation to help you decide if it's a good decision for your home. Let's dive in.
Crawl spaces are usually unfinished, narrow spaces at the lowest level of a house or structure that creates a barrier between the ground and the first floor. And because they're unfinished, they have dirt floors.
There are two common reasons why your home might have a crawl space.
There's another reason why your home might have a crawl space foundation. From 1950 to 1970, there was a housing shortage. After The Great Depression and WWII ended, veterans returned home. They got married and started families. And because there were no new houses being built during those two events, there was a huge demand for houses. So builders needed to build several houses in a short amount of time. What's the easiest and fastest way to build a house? Give it a crawl space foundation.
Crawl space encapsulation refers to lining your crawl space with a heavy-duty vapor barrier to seal the space off from the outside.
The vapor barrier is a thick, sheet of polyethylene plastic that is placed on the walls and dirt floors of your crawl space.
Crawl space encapsulation reduces humidity and prevents leaks, pests, and mold from entering your crawl space.
There are several reasons why you should encapsulate your crawl space.
Here’s how we tackle and encapsulate crawl spaces as a crawl space contractor.
Once you contact a foundation repair contractor, the first thing they're going to do is inspect your crawl space to assess the condition of your crawl space.
Some crawl spaces have a lot of groundwater seepage and it can be an issue. To fix this, we suggest installing a sump pump. It's a device that will capture any water and pump it away, before it ever enters your house.
Install is easy. We dig a 22-inch hole in the lowest spot in your crawl space. Sometimes, we move the soil around so everything is at a downward slope toward the pump.
This is where we encapsulate. To fix all water vapor issues, we install our thick vapor barrier. It's roughly 20mil thick plastic that is fitted and custom to your crawl space.
We install it to the walls, ceilings, and floors by using special tapes, sealants, and attaching fasteners.
After installing a vapor barrier, humid air might still find its way in. So we always suggest installing a dehumidifier. It's great at sucking moisture out of the air and keeping the moisture level below 55% year-round.
There are several benefits to crawl space encapsulation:
At this point, you're probably wondering how much this is going to cost. Unfortunately, it's not so black and white. Every home is different and every crawl space has its own set of problems. A few factors can affect the price including:
It's best to reach out to a contractor to inspect and give you a quote based on their findings.
If you're in our service area, please reach out to us. We'd love to help and determine what's the best solution for your crawl space.
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