Crawl space encapsulation is a fancy term for a series of repairs and improvements intended to make a crawl space cleaner, safer, and more energy efficient. The word “encapsulation” is an accurate description of the alterations made, but this process has also been called “crawl space sealing,” and “crawl space repair.”
Understanding crawl space problems
To appreciate crawl space encapsulation, it’s helpful to think about what happens in the average crawl space. In most cases, we’re talking about a dark, damp, cramped space under the house that no one ever enters. But out of sight isn’t out of mind. The mold that takes hold in a damp crawl space can send harmful spores into the air and cause important structural members (joists, sills, posts) to rot, threatening a home’s structural integrity. Insect and rodent pests can inhabit this space, even venturing into your living space from below.
What’s involved in crawl space encapsulation?
Crawl space encapsulation is sometimes referred to as “crawl space repair” or “crawl space sealing.” It’s easy to understand why these other terms are used. Crawl space problems –like dirt floors or water leakage through crawl space walls—call for repairs to be made as part of the encapsulation process. And the word “sealing” describes the process used to seal out moisture and outside air, so that the crawl space environment isn’t affected by exterior conditions.
An experienced crawl space encapsulation contractor should inspect your crawl space for free, and provide you with a free estimate to complete the encapsulation process. One of the details that an inspection will reveal is the structural integrity of your crawl space, including walls, joists, posts, and beams. If the main floor of the house has settled, or if the floor shows signs of unevenness, this can be due to inadequate structural support in the crawl space. Before the encapsulation process can begin, the contractor will want to correct such problems, usually be installing new posts, or crawl space jacks.
The sealing process in crawl space encapsulation typically involves sealing all crawl space vents and access openings. At least one access opening is kept operable, but weatherstripping prevents outside moisture and air from entering the crawl space. Then the contractor will cover crawl space walls and floor with heavy-duty plastic sheet material, taking care to seal all seams with special tape. If water has been leaking into the crawl space, it may be necessary to install a French drain system and sump pump to collect water and expel it outside the crawl space. If the crawl space has been damp and/or moldy for a long time, installing a crawl space dehumidifier will effectively dry out the space.
All work was done as per job estimate. The work was actually completed a day earlier than expected. The crew was very punctual and neat. Not a bit of dust made its way into my house. Would recommend highly. Waterproofing of entire basement and installation of gravity drain.
I appreciated the on-time, professional workmanship and quality of the job performed by the B-Dry team. Everything about the job exceeded my expectations. I interviewed multiple contractors and have no regrets with going with B-Dry. Thank you for resolving my crawlspace issue.
I cannot say enough about how satisfied I am with the consultation, service, installation, follow-up, professionalism.. This has truly been an excellent experience from start to finish. B-Dry is top of the list for Waterproofing Companies out there in our region. Thank You for a job WELL done.
Gerad and Jacob with BDry®, These guys kicked butt on a Monolithic floor in Evensville, had to carry probably 5 or 6 tons of busted up concrete in buckets up a hill to the trailer and then haul rock and cement back down hill, they were 1 or 2 guys short on the project, So just saying if anybody deserves a bonus or a pay increase it is these two guys. And also I promise you, if there is any way I could get these gentlemen to move to Colorado and work for me, I would make it worth their move $$$$ Thanks so much...
This is the second time that we have used your service. The team was knowledgeable, hard working and very efficient. Our storage in the basement was protected from dust and everything was cleaned up before they left. A job well done. I can't wait for the rain.
Did a fine job and was concerned about our being satisfied with the job.
Very courteous. Nice and timely. Did exactly what we expected. Professional.
My water issues were not your standard cookie cutter problems and solutions. Everyone involved took time to find solutions and explain exactly what they were going to do through the entire process. The job was done on time and they did exactly what they said they would do. I would recommend them to anyone looking to solve their home water proofing issues.
The crew did a good job. We had some issues with the rigid sealer and the discharge drain but another technician came out and resolved the issue.
The guys did a fantastic job! I will definitely refer your company to any of my acquaintances needing this service.
Crawl space structural repairs, sealing, waterproofing, and drying –these are important results of successful crawl space encapsulation. One more improvement is often recommended: crawl space insulation. By insulating the crawl space walls, the floors on the main level of the house can stay warmer in winter. Plus, your house will be less expensive to heat in the winter.
Crawl space encapsulation costs
The free estimate you receive from a crawl space repair contractor will list all the repairs and improvements that are recommended. The cost for this work will depend on various factors, including the size of your crawl space, what foundation repairs are necessary (if any), and whether or not waterproofing, dehumidification or insulation are included.