Crawlspace Encapsulation: How it Works, How it Benefits the Homeowner.
Crawl space foundations are growing in popularity for all the right reasons. Most new-age houses are adopting the crawl space foundations to meet their sustainable needs. These act as an ideal middle ground between the two traditional foundations – concrete slab and full basement.
Wait. But how are these crawl space foundations benefiting?
They work effectively on sloped surfaces too.
- Termite and pest control is easier.
- Ease of installing plumbing, HVAC, and wiring.
- Must-have for houses in earthquake or flood-prone areas.
- Space can be used as a storage area, while also allowing for future upgrades.
These are certain benefits that can be availed by house owners by installing a crawl space foundation. However, there is one major enemy of crawl space foundations and i.e. moisture.
From providing a breeding ground for pests and molds to increasing water bills, moisture is a huge headache. To solve the moisture issues, the best solution is crawl space encapsulation.
This is a technique of crawl space repair that works on sealing the entire foundation. Crawl space encapsulation in Knoxville Tn is shooting up in prevalence. Homeowners are considering this repair technique to ensure the long-term protection of their foundations.
But, what is crawl space encapsulation?
In simple words, the whole crawl space is encapsulated using a rugged polythene cover. The foundation walls are lined (similar to swimming pools) using thick sheets of polythene plastic.
This sealing ensures the crawl space is nothing but an airtight vapor barrier. By this, the moisture is locked out of the foundation area. Crawl space encapsulation in Knoxville Tn specifically has another step. Owing to the excess moisture in the city, a dehumidifier is installed to maintain the humidity levels.
How does crawl space encapsulation work?
A thorough analysis of the crawl space:
This evaluation helps one understand what your crawl space needs. Thorough analysis helps build a framework for encapsulating the crawl space.
Remove debris, old insulation, pests:
First off, the crawl space needs to be devoid of all the torn and ineffective vapor barriers. Likewise, any pests, fungus, or mildew need to be eliminated. Also, mold needs complete removal as it can rot the wood and harm the air quality.
Any water runoff from the yard can be a potential hazard to your crawl space. This may result in water rising in your crawl space that may derail all the efforts to control moisture. Also, it is common during crawl space encapsulation in Knoxville Tn to install a sump pump. This is to drain the water away from the crawl space.
This is an important prerequisite for proper crawl space encapsulation. Spraying foam insulation is needed to cover all the minute holes and gaps in the crawl space. Any holes, vents, or spaces around the duct or external pipes need to be sealed.
Install the vapor barrier
Now, this step restricts the crawl space from absorbing any water from the soil. A heavy-duty vapor barrier made out of polythene plastic is your best bet for this. Remember this vapor barrier is not only for the floors but also for the walls.
Reducing voids using tapes and fasteners
Any gap inside the crawl space is a potential pitfall for the encapsulation. Hence, to keep the compactness of the sealing consistent, tapes and fasteners are used. These hold the different sections together and ensure there is no passage of moisture.
Monitor humidity levels and moisture
Now, the whole of the basement is sealed making certain there is no way water seeps in. However, encapsulation cannot ensure complete blockage of air. During summer, moisture-laden air blows and enters the crawl space. Due to differential temperature, the air condenses into water droplets. And enter moisture.
Hence, installing a dehumidifier to modify humidity levels and moisture is an ideal solution.
These are the common steps that are followed during crawl space encapsulation. However, depending on the location, extent of damage (if any), and owner’s preference, certain alterations can be expected.
Read Here: Web Slab Foundation Issues and prevention.
Now, we have learned how crawl space encapsulation works. Moving on, let us understand;
How it benefits the homeowner?
Pest and mold-free crawl space
No moisture; No mold is the new catchphrase for crawl space encapsulation. Molds, pests, mildew are health hazards too but are thriving amidst the moisture and its wetness. By sealing almost all unnecessary entry points, the crawl space is ready to be both pest and mold-free.
Crawl space encapsulation is also a major factor for the ease of living. The house’s living temperature is saved from both extremes – too hot or too cold. The in-built insulation and conditioning allow for a more comfortable living style.
Reduces utility costs
With the sealing of the crawl space and the installation of a dehumidifier, the humidity levels are constant. Alongside the insulation and conditioning, your utility costs reduce like for HVAC systems.
Indoor air quality is improved
Controlled humidity levels ensure the indoor air quality is ideal. Alongside, the absence of mildews, fungi, and molds removes the unnecessary smell. A properly ventilated crawl space also regulates the soil gases and radon that are hazardous to human health.
Adds sturdiness to space
Wet soil, water seeping in are common issues with the crawl space. However, using encapsulation, the crawl space’s structural integrity increases. Proper encapsulation also means the soil surrounding the foundation is dry. Ideally, this reduces the chances for soil shift or formation of cracks.
Increases resale value of the house
Houses with complete crawl space encapsulation are often prioritized by buyers. At times, brokers and realtors increase your house’s valuation if crawl space encapsulation is performed. It acts as a measure of the house’s health.
All these are the benefits of having your house’s crawl space encapsulated. It is the best measure to control moisture, however, only if the sealing is perfect. To get the perfect encapsulation work, Guardian Foundation repair is a known name. It is a culmination of the highest standards of quality and tons of experience. And for your house to be protected well, contact us today.