It makes world of difference to the health of your home in our hot, humid North Carolina climate.
North Carolina building code has allows both vented and closed crawlspaces and there's currently great debate on that construction practice across the country, particularly the southeast. Vented crawlspaces worked great until the invention of air conditioning. When a home is cooled to 72° during the summer and the ambient air outside is 90° with a 80% relative humidity, it creates condensation on the floor joist, the insulation and the pipes and ducts. No amount of ventilation will solve the problem at this point. This constant condensation during the summer months promotes wood rot, fungal growth, and attracts all types of pests and insects including termites.
Closing a crawlspace (which includes sealing the vents, improving insulation, creating a continuous vapor barrier and actively or passively conditioning the air in the crawlspace) is now the standard for LEED homes, and is the right solution for existing homes experiencing moisture, humidity, and indoor air quality issues.
This research identifies the common symptoms of a crawl space moisture problem as:
Mold or moisture damage in the crawl space or living area, musty odors in the living area, Condensation ("sweating") on air conditioning ductwork or equipment, Condensation on insulation, water pipes or truss plates in the crawl space, Buckled or "cupped" hardwood floors High humidity in the living area, Insect infestations, and Rot in wooden framing members.
Closing the crawlspace creates a clean, healthy, controlled space under the home provides the following benefits:
Improves air quality throughout the home,
Saves up to an average 18% in heating and cooling cost in the Southeast
Reduces mold and wood decay on floor joist
Reduces buckling of hardwood floors
Creates warmer floors in the winter
Reduces pest and termite pressure
Over 76 million existing homes in the US are built on crawlspaces and 18% of all new homes in the US are built on crawlspaces. Our aim at East Coast Crawl Space Solultions is to improve families' quality of life, save dollars in energy usage and make the job of maintaining pest-free homes easier. Call us today for a free evaluation of your crawl space.