There may be times when not knowing something is better than knowing, however, that’s not the case when it applies to what is going on in your crawl space.
The “out of sight, out of mind” philosophy is a dangerous one to have when it comes to pest control. Why? There are a number of things that may inhabit the space, such as radon gas, toxic mold, airborne allergens and unwanted pests (after all, they don’t call it a crawl space for nothing).
By nature, crawl spaces are damp with moisture levels exceeding 70% humidity during certain times of the year. This creates the perfect environment for toxic mold and wood rot, as well as conditions conducive for wood destroying insects like termites and carpenter ants. The current standards of venting crawl spaces reveal a flaw in their approach. Studies have shown that ventilation systems contribute to the very condition they are supposed to address. Adding to the problem is the loss of heat and cool air, increasing your energy costs.
So, what’s the solution?
Research data strongly recommends encapsulation of the crawl space. This process encompasses various stages that, when applied correctly, will remove the environment that caused the unfavorable condition.
Remove the moisture source
Separate the home from the environment producing moisture - the earth itself
Encapsulate the crawl space with 20 mil thick polyethylene
Install a dehumidifier as well as a sump pump
Seal all openings to create an air tight space
Research indicates the following advantages to using this method:
Greatly improves the indoor air quality of your home
Reduces radon gas, musty smells, moisture and mold
Protects the home from rot, wood destroying insects and other pests
Reduces your energy costs by insulating your crawl space
Provides you with additional storage space
Where does all of this leave us? It leaves us with the question, when was the last time I went into my crawl space? Remember, the worst thing you should allow yourself to develop is the “out of sight, out of mind” philosophy. It is better to address the problem now before it gets worse.