Frequently Asked Questions
What is a sealed crawlspace?
A sealed crawlspace is any version of a crawlspace under a home where the foundation vents are closed or sealed or the home was built with no foundation vents. There are no standards in the different names to differentiate between a sealed, closed, conditioned or encapsulated etc… so what one contractor may call a sealed crawlspace another contractor may call the exact same set up an encapsulation. There are also no true standards other than a minimum set of construction codes in the NC building code that allows for a very wide variety of installations. The most important consideration in the distinction between a traditional open, air ventilated crawlspace and a closed crawlspace is the details that each contractor includes in their particular version. There are pro and cons of the different methods to consider and poor installations will have an adverse impact to indoor air quality, energy use, pest, and possible wood rot and accelerated mold growth so care should be taken to understand the methods used by any company you are considering for this type of work.
What are the benefits of sealing your crawlspace?
Done properly the crawlspace will be clean and can maintain dry conditions even during the most extreme weather fluctuations. A dry crawlspace can keep mold growth away, make it difficult for termites or ants to damage the wood and protect contents and appliances like your HVAC system, ducting or water heaters and pipes from rust and water damage. It is important to understand that no two contractors will do a crawlspace the same way and the benefits of each installation may be different along with any associated problems with a poorly designed or installed system. For most homeowners, an expectation of healthier indoor air from this type of work should be something that is looked at closely to find out each contractors method of confirming good results.
When Should I Seal My Crawlspace?
There is nothing wrong with a good ventilated crawlspace. Unfortunately, some crawlspaces cannot stay dry in the humid summer and early fall here in the southeast and a homeowner must then consider the idea of permanently closing up the space. Some people may buy a home in the spring where the crawlspace is clean and dry but then move in and find out the space is very wet and a problem once the summer is in full swing. The ultimate goal of Healthy Home Restoration is to discover and solve problems in, under and around the home that can lead to unhealthy conditions in your home. An inspection by Healthy Home Restoration can help find suggestions to improve the conditions and eliminate problems or may show that steps should be taken to close up the space properly.
How much does it cost to seal your crawlspace?
There are some general cost estimates that can be made but there are so many things to consider that can have drastic impacts on the overall cost of the project. some homes may need waterproofing or drainage done prior to installing the sealed system and some spaces may also have light mold or even very heavy mold that needs to be properly addressed. The most important consideration is going to be making sure that the crawlspace is actually solving the issue you are concerned with.
Will a sealed crawlspace enhance the value of my home?
Done properly, a sealed crawlspace can raise the value of a home. More importantly, it can minimize large repair request for issues in the crawlspace and can prevent the loss of a qualified buyer if there are moisture or mold issues found under the home during inspections. Once an issue with mold or moisture is found under or in the home during an inspection while the home is on the market it must be disclosed to potential buyers which can have an adverse impact in the offers made on your home.
How much will my energy savings be?
Done properly a single story home can see anywhere from 6% to 18% savings in heating and cooling cost annually. This number is going vary based on how well the home was originally built or the amount and type of insulation that was in place before the project. For homes with multiple stories the savings will be less but a properly sealed and conditioned space will also have a very positive impact on the comfort of the home during the cold season and lower indoor humidity in the summer months. An important consideration is that a sealed crawlspace that solely uses a dedicated dehumidifier to control the humidity will actually raise the energy bill in the summer and fall by as much as $20 to $40 per month. If one of your goals is to lower your energy consumption then be sure to talk with us to understand the different methods in the industry for keeping a closed crawlspace dry and clean.s.
What’s the Difference between a Sealed, Closed, and Encapsulated Crawlspaces?
I’m Building a new house - Is this a good time to seal my crawlspace?
Absolutely BUT! Most builders use the lowest cost installer they can find and use cheaper materials to save cost. There are also problems during the construction period when there is not yet