When you bring together three general contractors and turn the discussion to crawlspaces or moisture control, there will likely be six different opinions. Experts seem to have differing and sometimes conflicting opinions on the best approach to take.
Think of your home as one system. All components of your home, including insulation, windows, and living space, work together. To achieve optimal comfort, performance, and energy efficiency, all of these components must be balanced. This system includes your crawlspace. You can buy all the tools that are needed for crawlspace encapsulation at d7supply.
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Crawlspace encapsulation has received a lot of research over the last decade. The US Environmental Protection Agency and the US Department of Energy all conducted groundbreaking research on crawlspace encapsulation. Their research was instrumental in the revision of the International Building Code. They all agree on a few very important points.
Your house is like an enormous chimney. Natural convection draws air in through crawlspace vents or air leaks. Warm air rises and is drawn through the living area along with mold spores and odors and then exhausted through the attic.
Your crawlspace is naturally warmer than the outside temperature in the summer. When the outside temperature is warm and humid, moisture condenses on the crawlspace surfaces. This causes the moisture to "sweat" just like an iced tea cup sweating on the kitchen table in summer. It is common for crawlspace humidity levels to reach 100% in the southeast and for this reason, crawlspace encapsulation is a must.