Crawl spaces are one of the most neglected areas of homes in the Charlotte area, and yet also one of the primary sources of poor home performance
When it comes to home efficiency solutions, crawl space encapsulation can go a long way towards improving your home comfort and reducing your energy bills. But how do you know what kind of insulation to use for a crawl space? And where can you find a contractor who specializes in crawl space encapsulation near you?
First, let’s find out how to tell if a crawl space solution will benefit your Charlotte home with these five signs there’s trouble brewing just beneath your floorboards.
1. High Heating and Cooling Bills
The way heat moves in your home is often most easily explained by what’s called the “stack effect.” In the stack effect, winter pressure differentials between indoor and outdoor air (due to differences in temperature) cause cold air to be drawn in through the lower parts of your home as warm air escapes through the top. In the summer, this process is reversed, and warmer outdoor temperatures infiltrate through the top of the home, pushing cooler air down and out the bottom.
The less home insulation and the more air leaks your crawl space or basement have, the more pronounced the stack effect will be. So if you’re saddled with high heating and cooling bills every month, one of the first places you should look is your leaky crawl space. Adding crawl space subfloor insulation and air sealing can reduce the energy loss from the stack effect in your home and improve indoor comfort.
2. Moisture and Mold on the Walls and Floors of Your First Floor
Basements and crawl spaces are prime targets for attracting moisture buildup through a home’s concrete foundation. With enough moisture, mold will surely grow, and if that growth is significant enough, it can migrate up from the hidden areas of your home into your bottom floor. If you start to notice that the bottom corners of rooms directly above crawl spaces are showing signs of moisture or mold, that’s a big sign that the problem is much more significant beneath you.
To address this issue, a good home performance contractor will often install a crawl space moisture barrier to prevent moisture from building in those areas, and in some cases even adding a dehumidifier to keep moisture levels low, as well as test for mold to make sure there aren’t any hidden buildups making their way into your living spaces.
3. Indoor Allergy Symptoms In Your Home
If you’re noticing you experience an increase of allergy-like symptoms inside your room, you could be suffering from poor indoor air quality, and your crawl space could very well be to blame. Moisture and mold create health issues, and if your crawl space isn’t properly insulated and sealed, the previously mentioned stack effect could be helping to bring in outdoor air full of harmful VOCs and contaminants.
For many homes, the crawl space is where HVAC equipment runs, and customers often ask us: When it comes to air duct sealing, “Is it worth it?” The answer is yes! Air duct sealing helps ensure that the air circulating throughout your home is clean and healthy to breathe.
4. Bad Smells Inside Your House
Are you smelling something foul coming up below your first story floors? There are several reasons your crawl space could be emitting strange smells. Pests could be living and nesting there, including insects and mice. Also, moisture leads to mold like we’ve mentioned, which has a distinct odor (this is why mold tests are always a good idea).
Installing vapor barriers in crawl spaces is a great way to reduce crawl space odors and stop health issues from making their way into your home.
5. Drafts and Low Indoor Comfort
A crawl space without proper insulation or air sealing can drastically affect not just your heating and cooling costs (see #1) but your overall indoor comfort as well. Do you find yourself saying “My room is too cold!” too often in the winter season? Are there areas of your first floor where you’d swear there was a chilly draft moving through the house?
Encapsulating your crawl space helps prevent conditioned heat from escaping, warming your home and keeping you comfortable all winter long.
Crawl Space Encapsulation and Insulation Contractors in Charlotte, NC
From the very top of your Charlotte house, where radiant barrier installation and attic insulation materials with moisture prevention can help prevent heat loss and mold growth, to basement insulation and crawl space encapsulation costs, the building science team at Standard Insulating will work with you to find a solution for your home. Check out our testimonials page to hear what some of our customers have to say about working with us!