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Crawl Space Encapsulation? What It Is and Why It Is Important for Homeowners

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Home ownership is exciting, but for many, it can also become something of an educational experience. This is particularly true regarding the home's structure and the process of learning how to maintain it correctly. Since moisture is known to be an enemy of many of the materials commonly used in home construction, learning how to prevent crawl space moisture issues is an important part of successful home maintenance. If you are dealing with standing water or any type of moisture inside your home's crawl space area, encapsulation may be the solution you need.  

What is crawl space encapsulation?

While a basic water vapor barrier can be as simple as sheets of plastic laid down upon the soil of the crawl space and then held in place with weights or pegs, full crawl space encapsulation goes much further to protect the home. In addition to covering the floor, complete crawl space encapsulation covers the entire space, including exposed areas of soil, the foundation walls, and the ceiling with a special heavy-duty polyethylene barrier. Each section is then sealed together to ensure total coverage and protection. 

Are there health reasons to consider crawl space encapsulation? 

Excess moisture in the crawlspace is not only a threat to the physical health of your home, but it can also affect the health of the family living there. Constant moisture issues under the home can lead to the development of mold and mildew throughout the home. Additionally, it can raise humidity levels inside the living areas of the home, which can be problematic for people afflicted with some types of respiratory health problems. 

Can crawl space encapsulation help homeowners save money? 

Humidity issues in the home can also force your air conditioning system to work much harder than it normally does. This happens because part of the cooling process involves removing excess moisture from the air in the home.

If moisture is constantly being reintroduced from the crawlspace, the dehumidifying process used by your central air conditioning system will have to work more often to address the problem. This is costly to the homeowner because it uses more energy and results in increased wear and tear on the cooling system. By encapsulating the crawl space, homeowners can break this cycle and enjoy a more comfortable home. 

To learn more about this process and determine if it is a solution for the moisture issues you face, homeowners should speak with a crawl space encapsulation contractor in their area.