As a builder of custom homes, I will over the next several weeks be posting my observations about building techniques, methods, practices and products that I have observed in over many years of building upper end custom homes.
So welcome to my first installment of Building Science 101. My first topic: Unsealed Crawl Spaces
I spend considerable time exploring homes under construction and I am amazed that there are still many homes being built and sold with conventional vented crawl spaces. It was a standard practice for many years. Homes with exterior vents that you manually opened each summer and closed each winter. The thought was that air circulation was best, but that is not actually the case.
The truth is, conventionally vented crawl spaces have been found to cause moisture buildup, especially with our locally humid spring and summers. As a result homeowners can experience condensation on ductwork or plumbing in their crawl space, mold, mildrew spots on furniture or walls, rot in wooden framing, and insect and rodent issues.
The cost of using a sealed crawl space over conventional vented crawl space is between $1.50 to $2.00 per square foot. This is less than 1.5% of the cost of the average home. The benefits are enormous. Gone are the mold, rodent, and insect infested habitat only inches below the floor your children are playing on. Air in your home will be cleaner, easier to heat and cool. Moisture in your home will be much more controllable using simple methods which will be described further in future posts.
Wake up – this is a no brainer!