The hot, muggy air in your crawl space or within your unfinished basement may not seem like much of a problem, but over time, it can lead to chronic health problems, damage to your home, and even insect and termite infestation. With as much as 40 percent of the air on your home’s first floor coming from your crawl space, you need for space under your home to be as dry and healthy as possible.
Fortunately, we specialize in providing crawl space and basement solutions that allow you to breathe easily in your Hillsborough home!
What Is a Vapor Barrier?
Made from plastic or foil, a vapor barrier is a common method to block moisture transfer from under your home or basement. It’s generally used to cover the earth under the home, so water evaporation can’t take place, though it can also be used to cover the walls of a basement so moisture can’t diffuse through the walls.
While evaporation and diffusion from damp earth does play a role in how much moisture is under your home, it’s not the only problem. Especially living in a humid climate, having a vented crawl space or basement with just a vapor barrier only reduces the moisture entering your home. It’s not a comprehensive solution as it can still enter from outside the foundation and lead to the same problems as moisture evaporating from the dirt below your house.
Is a Vapor Barrier Right for Your Hillsborough Home?
A vapor barrier is generally an acceptable way to block moisture transmission in cold or dry climates like the Upper Midwest or even parts of Canada. However, it’s not a 100 percent effective method for much of the United States. In fact, because Hillsborough is so hot in the summer and humid through much of the year, something more comprehensive is necessary.
Vapor barriers simply can’t block all the moisture in your crawl space, so they’re only slowing down mold growth and wood rot. In reality, anywhere there are gaps or openings within your foundation moisture can enter and seep into your home, whether by permeating your subflooring or entering through cracks and crevices.
Why a Vapor Barrier May Not Be Enough
If you’re only relying on plastic or foil sheeting to keep your vented crawl space or unfinished basement dry, you are still susceptible to insects and termites, and over time, this can cause your home’s foundation and floor joists can become damaged or weakened, requiring professional floor leveling and intensive repairs. Regardless of where moisture enters your crawl space, either from evaporated condensation under the house or from air flowing in from outside the foundation, the same problems can result
Unless you encapsulate your crawl space or basement, the air that enters will move through the rest of the house and cause damage to your walls, flooring, and anywhere mold can grow. Spores can also enter your heating and air conditioning system and circulate through your home, triggering asthma attacks, allergy symptoms, headaches, and other chronic issues.
Protect Your Hillsborough Home with More than a Vapor Barrier
In order to prevent expensive repairs and health problems caused by a damp crawl space or basement, you need to prevent as much moisture from entering the space under your home as possible. That’s why the experts at Crawl Space and Basement Technologies recommend basement and crawl space encapsulation. This is a highly effective method of thoroughly sealing the area, including blocking all the cracks, crevices, and vents around the perimeter of your crawl space or basement as well as sealing the floor, keeping your home drier, healthier, and more comfortable!
Call Our Crawl Space & Basement Moisture Specialists in Hillsborough
If you’d like to learn what options are available to ensure a drier crawl space or basement, schedule your no-obligation estimate by calling us today at (919) 847-7072 or filling out our online form. We will visit your home to give you the most accurate price point for the job. Our trained specialist will guide you through the options to determine the best solution for you and your budget.