How to Improve Your Home with Crawl Space Encapsulation

Crawl Space Encapsulation

A crawl space is mostly treated as an afterthought by homeowners. While it is a common part of older homes in low lying regions, most homeowners don’t include it in their home improvement projects. However, just because it is out of sight does not mean this space should be neglected. Doing so not only poses risks to your family but could also lead to structural problems in your foundation.

One of the most common problems you will encounter in your basement is moisture presence. In fact, most homeowners only come to remember this space when there is a flood. By then, it might be too late because the rising water will have caused extensive damage. The source of water could be foundation wall cracking or rising ground water.

Risks of Crawl Space Moisture

There is also the risk of mold growth on wooden surfaces and these allergens will eventually find their way into the main house. Over time, foundation joist will be damaged by water, which will compromise the strength of your home. Due to moisture presence, a crawl space will also become home to vermin including rodents, termites, cockroaches, ants among others.

Crawl space encapsulation is intended to reclaim this space by making it waterproof. A waterproofing contractor first assesses the source of water and treats it before any waterproofing system is installed. In older homes, there was no installation of crawl space drainage because it was not part of the building code. If there is no solution to standing water in your crawl space, the problem becomes worse.

Complete Crawl Space Encapsulation

It is important to treat the underlying problem before finishing your crawl space. Once the source of water is identified, a drainage system should be installed. This can include interior drain tile installed along the perimeter of the foundation walls. Such a tile should then drain water into a sump pit for pumping by a crawl space sump pump.

Comprehensive crawl space encapsulation should not only deal with prevention of moisture entry but also ensuring all water is driven away from this space. With a drain tile and sump pump in place, you are assured there will be no hydrostatic pressure against the walls. More importantly, there will be no condensation on the insulation cover which could eventually lead to moisture and vapor leaks.

Once the entire space is insulated using a waterproof material, your contractor should install an energy efficient dehumidifier to ensure any air that flows into the house is dry. Such an installation also prevents mold growth and keeps critter away.

If you notice water in your home’s crawl space, call a certified contractor for comprehensive crawl space encapsulation.