Reduce Crawlspace Moisture with Vapor Barrier
LESLIE: Tuning in on KNRS we’ve got Lori. Welcome. What can we help you with?
LORI: Yes, I purchased an older home approximately four years ago. When I bought the home, it’s got a crawlspace that runs underneath the length of the living room and dining room. And the ceiling of that crawlspace had no insulation. So I had insulation put in. When the people came to put the insulation in, they put plastic over the dirt in the crawlspace over the entire crawlspace.
LORI: And I’ve got moisture buildup in that now. And I’m worried about mold and mildew under that and I don’t whether to take that up or what I should do.
TOM: Congratulations, Lori. That vapor barrier is doing exactly what it should be doing. (chuckling) So, that is why they put it down. That moisture, if it wasn’t getting trapped under the sheeting would be getting up into the insulation and that could be causing all sorts of problems. So it’s actually doing exactly what it’s supposed to do by keeping it under the plastic sheet itself.
LORI: So I should just leave that down and I don’t need to worry about it?
TOM: Leave it alone. Leave it alone. If you want to reduce crawlspace moisture that’s the right thing to do. The other things that you could do is take a look at the outside of your house, right Leslie?
LESLIE: Yeah, you could look at the gutter system on your home and make sure that you have enough downspouts and that they’re clean and free-flowing and the gutters themselves are clean.
LESLIE: You can look at the grading around your property and make sure that it slopes away from the house. This way you’re keeping all the water and the moisture away from the foundation wall.
LESLIE: But really, that’s what it’s supposed to be doing.
LORI: Yeah, I was just concerned that I’d get some mold built up that might go into the foundation.
TOM: No, that’s not going to be an issue because there’s no organic material. That moisture is staying at the soil level which is where it should be.
LORI: Great. OK, thank you.
TOM: You’re welcome, Lori. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.