7 Benefits of Crawl Space Encapsulation

Up to 50% of the air you breathe in your home can flow up from your crawl space, so it’s vital to keep your crawl space as clean and dry as possible. Even vented crawl spaces can hold moisture and put your home at risk of water damage from mold, wood rot, pest infestation, and decreased energy efficiency. Moisture can cause a variety of unwanted problems, so it’s vital to keep excess moisture out of your home.

Today, homeowners encapsulate their crawl space to keep moisture and the resulting unwanted problems out of their home. Sealing off your crawl space protects your home’s foundation and makes your house a healthier place in which to live. Adding a crawl space vapor barrier and dehumidifier is the best way to improve your home’s indoor air quality and maximize energy efficiency.

Crawl Space Encapsulation Defined

Crawl space encapsulation is the adding of a heavy-duty polyethylene barrier to cover the crawl space including floors, foundation walls, and possibly even its ceiling. An encapsulation barrier could be likened to the lining in your swimming pool that prevents leaks. The barrier works best when it covers your home’s crawl space completely. Sealing tape connects the barrier’s pieces throughout the space, and once the space is sealed, a dehumidifier helps regulate your crawl space’s moisture level.

Reasons People Encapsulate Their Crawl Space

Homeowners have crawl spaces encapsulated to avoid:

  • The dangers involved when mold is present in the home
  • A musty mildew smell inside the home
  • Escalated home heating and cooling costs
  • Wet insulation
  • Windows that appear to sweat
  • Pest infestation in the home

Benefits of Crawl Space Encapsulation

  1. Improves air quality—Crawl space encapsulation promotes clean air circulation throughout your home, making it healthier to breathe for your friends and family. Unsealed crawl spaces are breeding grounds for moisture. When moisture is eliminated, humid air is no longer circulated throughout your home.
  2. Eliminates insect infestation—Insects including termites need moisture to survive. Crawl space encapsulations eliminate the possibility of creating conditions that welcome pests such as termites. Avoid the threat of insect infestation, significant damage, and the hassle pests cause by simply addressing your crawl space needs with professional encapsulation.
  3. Increases healthy living conditions—No one wants to get sick from spending time in their own home. Encapsulating a home’s crawl space makes the home a healthier place to live and breathe.
  4. Prevents mold and mildew issues—Unwanted moisture issues are prevented when moisture is eliminated from under your home. And no musty, wet odors will enter your home from your heating and air conditioning unit.
  5. Thwarts structural damage—For the long-term stability of your home’s foundation, it’s vital to prevent moisture from accumulating in your crawl space. When you prevent dampness from gathering in your crawl space, you also prevent it from seeping through to the dirt which surrounds your home’s foundation. Gutters aim water away from your home’s foundation, but a moist crawl space under your home can cause trouble. Crawl space encapsulation helps prevent moisture retention and makes your foundation more stable for years.
  6. Increases energy efficiency—When your heating and air conditioning unit doesn’t have to fight damp air created by a moist crawl space, it functions with less energy, which decreases your monthly utility bills. Note: crawl space encapsulation pays for itself over time due to the increased energy efficiency it provides your home.
  7. Improves the comfort of your floors. With crawl space encapsulation, the temperature of your home’s hardwood and tile floors will be more comfortable to walk on, especially during winter months. Encapsulation also keeps your home from feeling wet and humid during the hot summer months.

What Crawl Space Encapsulation Includes

Professionals begin by assessing your home’s needs and verifying your crawl space is suitable for encapsulation. Crawl space encapsulation includes:

  • Raking the soil under the house to make it flat and smooth
  • Removing debris
  • Adding a new access door for extra ventilation
  • Adding 2.5 inches of foam insulation on all block walls
  • Installing a 20-mm liner on walls and floor
  • Installing humidifiers and a drain pipe if needed
  • Removing all old, unneeded, or damaged insulation
  • Treating for mold and mildew as needed
  • Adding steel wool around all pipes leading into the house with spray foam insulation
  • Installing new insulation
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