When you think about your crawl space, you likely imagine a damp, dirty space that’s dark and difficult to enter. While homeowners tend to ignore these spaces of the home, a neglected crawl space can cause some issues. For instance, these spaces can invite pests inside, increase your home’s energy costs and even host mold and rot.
Luckily, crawl space encapsulation can give you peace of mind by making this area dry, efficient and useful. If you’re unsure about it, here are some pros and cons of crawl space encapsulation to consider.
What Is Crawl Space Encapsulation?
Crawl space encapsulation is the process of blocking humidity to keep moisture levels low in the crawl space. Humid parts of the home, like crawl spaces, are at a high risk of moisture damage over time, which leads to foundational damage and impacts your home’s stability.
There are various ways to encapsulate a space, but contractors will typically seal the crawl space’s interior and the underside of the house to keep moisture out of floor joists and subflooring. They’ll add a heavy-duty moisture barrier to your crawl space’s floor, insulated walls, sealed foundation vents and specific dehumidifiers for this space.
Crawl space encapsulation really does work, and is effective when completely sealed. Hiring professional contractors to complete the task is the best way to achieve this.
Pros of Crawl Space Encapsulation
Crawl space encapsulation has many benefits, from making your home’s air safer to preventing pests and increasing energy efficiency. Continue reading to learn more about the pros of crawl space encapsulation:
1. PREVENTS PESTS
Your crawl space can invite various pests into your home, from ants and termites to spiders or even rodents. If you’re wondering whether you should encapsulate your crawl space, consider that the process adds an airtight barrier so unwanted insects and critters can no longer enter.
While you’ll need to eradicate current pest colonies, you won’t have to deal with future unwanted guests after the task is done. You can even ask your contractor for pest-specific barriers if you’re concerned about a particular critter.
High-humidity areas are associated with many pest problems. When installed correctly, crawl space encapsulation can protect you from various pests and their damage, such as termites, rodents and other wildlife.
2. PROTECTS YOUR HOME FROM MOLD AND MILDEW
When water accumulates in the crawl space, it can invite mold, mildew and fungal growth. Mold and mildew can lead to serious health problems like allergies and asthma attacks. If you have children or pets living in the house, they could be at high risk of these allergens. That’s where crawl space encapsulation comes in — professionals can perform these services so that everyone in your home stays safe and healthy.
3. PROTECTS YOUR HOME’S STRUCTURAL INTEGRITY
Moisture also causes rot, which can impact your home’s structural integrity. With crawl space encapsulation, you’ll reduce moisture problems that may occur to defend your home from mold and mildew and promote a lasting, stable home. Crawl space encapsulation is necessary to ensure your home is free of potential health hazards, keeping moisture outside.
4. INCREASES ENERGY EFFICIENCY
Over your crawl space encapsulation’s lifetime, you can expect increased energy efficiency and lower heating costs. Once it’s airtight, you won’t lose hot or cool air to the outside, meaning your heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system won’t need to work as hard to keep your home warm in the colder seasons and cool in the warm seasons. In the long run, crawl space encapsulation means conserved energy and reduced heating costs over the lifetime of your home.
5. ELIMINATES HOME ODORS
The crawl space is a significant contributor to odors in the home. The encapsulation process includes cleaning and preparing your crawl space. Once professionals correctly seal the crawl space, your home will be less likely to experience the smells of mold and mildew.
6. ADDS STORAGE SPACE
An encapsulated crawl space is dry, airtight and sanitary. If you have access to the area, you can treat this space like any other storage area in your home. The space will look and smell nice and clean once encapsulated.
Cons of Crawl Space Encapsulation
While there are several benefits of crawl space encapsulation, a few cons to consider include:
1. UPFRONT INVESTMENT
The average cost of crawl space encapsulation is around $5,500, though you might pay anywhere from $1,500 to $15,000, depending on tools, materials and labor and the size and condition of your crawl space. The price can also increase if additional work needs to be done, such as mold removal or structural work.
2. ADDS MAINTENANCE
Now that you’re fixing up your crawl space, you’ll need to maintain it like any other part of your home. You’ll want to conduct regular crawl space inspections, ensuring the area remains properly insulated and maintained.
One of the most important things you’ll want to do is monitor your crawl space’s humidity, ensuring it never goes above 60%. It’s also essential to keep your dehumidifier filters clean.
Luckily, most companies offer a maintenance agreement, which is an excellent option for homeowners.
3. POTENTIAL HVAC UPGRADE
After encapsulating your crawlspace, it might restrict air movement in the home, making your HVAC system less efficient than before. If your house no longer feels as warm or cool as it was in the months before your crawl space encapsulation, you might need to upgrade the HVAC system to keep your home’s temperatures consistent and comfortable.
Is Crawl Space Encapsulation Worth It?
While installing crawl space encapsulation can be costly, the benefits make this investment well worth it. Encapsulating the crawl space area is essential to prevent mold and mildew growth, which brings several health implications. You’ll see less humidity and smaller heating and cooling losses, and the installation can add value to your property.
So, is it worth it to encapsulate the crawl space? The decision is up to you, but ultimately, you’ll save more on utility costs over time, increase your property value and protect your home and family with this installation.
Crawl Space Encapsulation by HydroHelp911
Now that you’ve learned the crawl space encapsulation pros and cons, you can make a more informed decision. You’ll need to encapsulate your crawl space to protect your home from pests and allergens and appreciate added energy efficiency.
At HydroHelp911, we can answer any questions you may have about the process and properly seal your crawl space so you can appreciate its many benefits. We’re fully licensed and insured and provide excellent customer service every step of the way.
For a free estimate, call us today!