If you've noticed mold, insects, or high heating and cooling costs, it may be time to consider having your crawl space encapsulated for its protection. This better protects your home from the elements. If you are thinking about crawl space encapsulation, check out these five facts you need to know.

It Creates a Vapor Barrier

A major reason you should consider crawl space encapsulation is because it creates a vapor barrier. Without any protection, moisture from the ground can enter the home from the crawl space. This quickly leads to mold, mildew, musty smells, and rot. When you cover your entire crawlspace with heavy-duty polyethylene sheets, the moisture from the ground is stopped in its tracks.

In particular, this is also good for your family. As mold and mildew continue to grow, the spores can reach the living space and are could be breathed in by you and your family, resulting in health issues. With crawl space encapsulation, you don't have to worry about your family breathing in dangerous spores.

You Should See Fewer Pests

A wet crawlspace can also be a breeding ground for pests. Pests tend to like dark, wet places because it gives them an area to hide from predators and water to drink. If your crawl space is constantly damp, this can allow insects and rodents to enter the home. Some of these creatures can even cause more damage than the moisture damage. For example, termites love damp wood, so they may be drawn to the damp wood floor above your crawl space. When you eliminate that moisture, pests are less likely to be attracted to your crawl space.

It Can Improve Structural Integrity of the Home

Moisture and sitting water around your foundation is disastrous. This is why gutters have drains that lead the water away from the home. If you have a damp crawl space, you may still have water collecting around your foundation. In some cases, the moisture may cause the dirt on which your house sits to become weak, affecting the foundation and the way your house sits in the ground.

Water can also cause problems to cement. Cement is porous, so water easily enters it. If the water freezes, it expands and causes cracks. Lastly, any wood beams supporting your home stay stronger when they stay dry.

You May See Energy Savings

Another common problem with drafty, damp crawl spaces is that they affect the temperature inside your home. On cold days, even if you have the heat on, cold, moist air can blow into your home from the crawl space, creating drafts and cold zones. To fix this problem, you have to turn up the temperature and use more power. By encapsulating your crawl space, you also create a barrier to reduce the transfer of heat. This means you use less energy to heat or cool your home. Because the systems are being used more efficiently, there is less strain placed on them.

Sealing Is Another Option

If you don't want to spend as much or you just don't need that much protection for your crawl space because you have few problems, consider sealing instead. While encapsulation covers every surface—floor, walls, and ceiling—sealing only covers the floor and a small portion of the walls. It's not as effective, but because fewer materials and work is involved, you can save money. It's an excellent option if you only have minor moisture problems.

Don't neglect your crawl space. It is an important part of your home that should be cared for properly. Sealing and encapsulation protects your crawl space and the rest of your home. For more information on what you can do to protect your crawl space, contact a specialist in your area today.