Encapsulation: Frequently, a Solution For Musty Crawl Spaces

June 26th, 2019
Property owners of vintage buildings in this region sometimes complain about musty odors emanating from crawl spaces underneath homes and businesses. Did you know, obtaining waterproofing services usually offers a solution to this problem? Requesting crawl space encapsulation holds particular value in cases in which the crawl spaces in older homes include extensive unpaved, dirt surfaces.

Musty Odors: An Impediment to Real Estate Marketability

Problems caused by the stale, unpleasantly musty indoor air usually arise due to the presence of moisture. Dank, wet conditions allow microscopic plants to thrive on a variety of surfaces. When damp conditions occur frequently in the lower levels of a structure’s crawl spaces, environmental conditions favor the proliferation of molds and mildews. As these organisms release spores, the interior air quality eventually grows musty and unpleasant.

During previous eras, many builders constructed homes and commercial buildings in this part of North Carolina above earthen crawl spaces. In some cases, seasonal weather conditions contribute to the vigorous growth of mildews in these locations. People may notice a pervasive, distinctive “musty” odor indoors. The premises may become especially uncomfortable for anyone suffering from allergies. Unless property owners take action to correct the underlying moisture issue, this problem remains an ongoing concern. It may even impair the marketability of the real estate.

Encapsulation Helps Control Excessive Moisture

Frequently, encapsulating the crawl space furnishes an excellent solution in this situation. Prices vary widely for this service, depending upon the size and the condition of the crawl space, and the difficulty of performing an encapsulation. During this process, a waterproofing firm typically first conducts a waterproofing inspection of the property. It remains vitally important to ascertain the most likely source(s) of the dampness in an unpaved crawl space. Often, water seeps through the earth to create persistently moist conditions at a certain time of year. (Yet dampness sometimes occurs due to other sources as well, such as damaged water pipes or rainwater runoff spilling into the crawl space.)

After evaluating the site, a trained waterproofing technician then endeavors to seal the crawl space in order to establish a dry environment there. It may first become necessary to plug cracks in a building’s foundation which permit water to penetrate into the crawl space. Additionally, in some cases, the use of a dehumidifier proves helpful. This technology may reduce moisture in the air in this location. During encapsulation, the waterproofing firm applies one or more barriers to help prevent moisture from posing a concern within the crawl space. A successful encapsulation eliminates the environmental conditions which allow microscopic molds and mildews to thrive. It should contribute to improved air quality on the premises, too.

The Value of Encapsulation

The encapsulation of a subterranean crawl space offers a number of benefits. First, it prevents water from continuing to create damp, dank conditions underneath a home or business. Without this corrective measure, the presence of moisture might eventually contribute to other problems, such as wet, damaged foundations, framing timbers, or sub-flooring.

Second, a successful encapsulation should help improve the quality of interior air in the premises. This change helps create more comfortable living conditions for residents. It also makes it much less likely that musty interior air will hinder the marketability of reality.

Obtaining Encapsulation Services

Since encapsulation helps maintain the anticipated useful lifespan of commercial buildings and homes, mortgage companies and other lenders today often favor this type of home improvement. The cost of encapsulation may vary widely, however. The materials and labor required to complete the project sometimes cover a broad spectrum.

In some situations, property owners choose to pay for a simple, uncomplicated encapsulation as an out-of-pocket home improvement. In other cases, a real estate owner may seek to obtain funding for a more complex crawl space encapsulation project. It frequently proves helpful to ask an experienced waterproofing firm to prepare a written report (with photos) outlining the project in detail in order to describe the proposed repairs to prospective lenders.

Further Information

Drainage & Waterproofing Solutions LLC performs skilled crawl space encapsulations for property owners across the Greater Raleigh, Fayetteville, and Southern Pines Area. We also offer a variety of other essential waterproofing services. To request a waterproofing inspection, or to seek crawl space encapsulation, simply contact us at 919-235-5219 or 919-508-7503. We look forward to assisting you!

Helpful Information

1. https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/home/musty-smell-in-a-rowhouse-yes-its-coming-from-the-crawl-space/2018/11/02/
2. https://www.drainagenwaterproofing.com/crawl-space-repair-encapsulation/