Crawl spaces are unseen, so people often brush them aside when it’s time for home maintenance. Protecting your crawl space, however, is protecting your entire home from moisture issues. Ignoring problems in your crawl space can expose the rest of your home to dangerous mold and structural damage. Check out how you can protect your entire home with a crawl space vapor barrier.
What is a crawl space vapor barrier?
A crawl space vapor barrier is a protective layer in the crawl space of your home that fights moisture buildup. The actual barrier is generally made of plastic material or foil sheeting. The layer stops water from entering the air, which prevents moisture from causing mold, mildew, rot, and structural damage.
If you don’t have a crawl space vapor barrier, you may see these warning signs of crawl space damage:
- Standing water
- Frequent headaches, allergies, or asthma complications
- Cracks in your home’s foundation
- Insect or pest infestations
- Rusty pipes or HVAC ventilation
- Cracks in drywall or plaster
- Odor in or around your home
- Rotting wood in your crawl space
- White, chalky substance (efflorescence) on the walls of crawl space walls
- High radon levels
Having a crawl space vapor barrier can protect your home in the following ways. Let’s break down these five reasons why you should install a crawl space vapor barrier.
Why should I install a crawl space vapor barrier?
1. Mold and Mildew Prevention
Mold and mildew spores that come from a damp crawl space can enter the air inside our homes. Breathing in these spores can cause discomfort or serious health issues for residents. Crawl space vapor barriers can stop moisture in your crawl space and prevent mold and mildew growth.
2. Energy Efficiency
Unprotected crawl spaces allow moisture to enter your home. That moisture can increase humidity, forcing your HVAC and furnace to work overtime in an effort to regulate temperature. With a crawl space vapor barrier, your heating and cooling systems will use less energy and can help you save money on your energy bills.
3. Wiring and Electrical Hazard Prevention
Moist surroundings and electrical wiring are a dangerous mix. Moisture in the air can lead to electrical shorts, rusted wires, and a greater risk of a fire. A crawl space vapor barrier will keep your crawl space free of moisture and decrease your chances of an accidental fire or electrocution.
4. Pipe Preservation
Crawl spaces are packed with pipes for your water and sewage. Allowing moisture to collect on the pipes will cause rust over a period of time and cause potential water issues. Rusted pipes are more susceptible to bursting and causing serious damage to your home. Older homes are at a significantly higher risk for pipe damage. But, with a crawl space vapor barrier, you can preserve your pipes.
5. Structural Protection
Prolonged exposure to moisture can weaken the structural integrity of your home. Moisture can lead to wood rot, rusted metal, and damaged drywall. If the structure of your home suffers damage, you may need a foundation repair expert to ensure that your home is safe. With a crawl space vapor barrier, you can protect your home’s structure.
A crawl space vapor barrier can protect your home from moisture and unseen damage. If you’re experiencing any of the warning signs of crawl space damage, your home may need the protection of a vapor barrier. Don’t wait! Call our specialists for a free consultation and project estimate.
In the meantime, download our guide to learn the five questions you should ask your foundation repair specialist.
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