History of Homes & Crawl Spaces
Since the beginning of home building, moisture under the home has been an issue. It was thought that putting multiple (cross ventilation) vents in to bring in fresh air and carry out the moist air was the answer, but that was not fixing the problem alone. Next the thought was that they would add plastic on top of the floor beneath the home and this would keep most of the moisture under it, but this proved to cause even more problems because, it never allowed the water or moisture under the plastic to dry, it was not sealed letting moisture, odor and gasses to enter the home and it promoted mold growth, causing huge problems with the home and homeowners Health.
Why Concrete Came About
Next they thought that the best way to seal the crawl space was pumping concrete in. This was the logical solution. Homeowners were sold on it by contractors because they would compare it to the garage floor, driveway or a slab. The difference is that the concrete pumped into a crawl space is not like that of a garage floor or slab. The concrete pumped into a crawl space has more water added to it so that the concrete can self level itself. What’s even worse is that when the concrete dries, it forms a chalky surface of silica dust that ends up in the home, not only making the home dusty; it is also a health concern. Choosing to have wet, porous concrete installed in the crawl space is like adding 300 lbs of water for every yard of concrete. Water is what you are trying to keep out! Water is Molds best friend! And where do you think that water goes as the concrete is drying? Since they put plastic down before they pump the concrete in, the water has only one place to go, UP! And when a wet concrete mix dries, it will crack allowing moisture, water, odors and gasses to enter the crawl space and then the home.
Crawl Space Liners
Pumping concrete may cosmetically look great, but installing a Zero Perm encapsulation system is the way to go. Zero Perm means that Zero water, moisture, odors or gasses can pass through (100% efficient). Most liners on the market are a 6, 12 or 20 mil and have a rating of.04 or.06 perms, this means that they are only 94% to 96% efficient.
Other advantages of Zero Perm encapsulation systems compared to concrete / others are:
– Qualify for “Cash for Caulkers” – big tax deductions come tax time
· 60mil thickness (keep out bugs & keep in heat)
· Stops Radon and other natural but deadly gasses from rising and endangering indoor air quality
· Moisture is mediated therefore mold has no food to grow with
· R-5 + insulation value
· Foil side reflects heat back into the crawl space and home while keeping the cold air out, saving on energy costs
· Permanently seals walls and floor
– Green Home Certified