Do you have a crawl space under your home? If so, did you know that you can improve your home’s energy efficiency by installing spray foam insulation in your crawl space?
Sliding across hardwood floors in your socks is a lot of fun when you’re a kid. And it’s also enjoyable when you’re an adult! But being forced to wear socks because both your floor and your feet are cold is not fun.
Insulation is supposed to help keep your home’s temperature stable. Its purpose is to keep drafts out and the cooled or heated air inside. However, as with many other things, not all insulation methods are created equal.
Repairing crawl spaces is one of our primary services at Carolina Crawlspace Pros. And we’ve seen a plethora of examples that demonstrate why fiberglass insulation is a poor choice for crawl spaces. We want you to avoid the pitfalls of using the wrong type of insulation because they can be frustrating and costly to repair.
WHY SHOULD YOU AVOID USING FIBERGLASS INSULATION IN YOUR CRAWL SPACE?
Builders believed that insulating the crawl space with fiberglass batting was a good idea. Unfortunately, history has shown that this is a bad idea. It frequently comes loose and falls out of place, which is inconvenient and wasteful. When it falls to the ground, it does not provide any insulation!
However, if it remains in place, it can actively damage the structure of your wooden flooring. This is due to the batting’s ability to absorb and hold water, much like a sponge. Because this itchy sponge batting has adhered to your joists, beams, and subfloor, moisture is “shared” with those wooden components. If the fiberglass batting absorbs enough water, it will become too heavy for the fasteners and fall out of place.
A Damp Flooring Structure Is a Serious Problem
Insects like termites find damp boards appealing as a home. Termites prefer softer wooden surfaces because they are easier to chew on. Larger pests looking for nesting materials may find the insulation itself appealing. In addition, molds can grow on both damp wood and insulation surfaces. None of these things belong in or around your home!
Mold and water both contribute to the rate at which wood rots. As a result, your floors will sag as the wooden joists and beams deteriorate. Repairing or replacing damaged boards is the only way to repair sagging floors.
Crawl space insulation can be a great way to provide a warm and cozy environment in your home, but if not done correctly, you may end up with more problems, such as soggy insulation, rodent infestations, and other issues. There are several types of insulation used to insulate crawl space, including fiberglass batts, cellulose, spray foam, and others, but only a few have seen crawl space areas successfully insulated for the long term. Because your crawl space is vulnerable to dampness, air leakage, rodent infestations, and other disasters, investing in crawl space insulation must be done correctly to avoid these risks.
WHY SHOULD YOU USE SPRAY FOAM INSULATION IN YOUR CRAWL SPACE?
- Spray foam insulation penetrates even the smallest cracks, effectively blocking airflow from the outside. This means no more drafts and cold floors beneath your home!
- Because the airflow is completely blocked, one of the ways pollen enters your home is eliminated. This is an immediate improvement in air quality, delighting allergy sufferers.
- Eliminating drafts and pollen particles will also improve the performance of your HVAC system. In addition, a more efficient heater/air conditioner uses less energy and saves money on utility bills.
- Spray foam insulation repels moisture, removing a breeding ground for mold. This is yet another victory for air quality. Keeping moisture out also aids in the prevention of leaks.
- Spray foam deters insects and larger pests because it hardens to a dense material. Sure, if a raccoon is determined enough, it can probably claw its way through spray foam. Most pests, however, do not want to work that hard when there are more accessible areas nearby.
- It adheres to the surface on which it is installed, so no fasteners are required. It also conforms to the same space in which it is placed. This prevents it from deteriorating or falling apart. Spray foam insulation has a life expectancy of more than 80 years.
- Spray foam insulation has twice the R-value of fiberglass batting. The R-value of fiberglass batting is 2.8-3.9, while the R-value of spray foam is 5.5-7.12. The “R-value” of a material indicates its effectiveness at preventing heat transfer. The higher the number, the better the surface.
Crawl Space Insulation
Crawl space insulation is essential for keeping cold air out of your home. You can protect the internal contents of crawl spaces from freezing temperatures by sealing air leaks in crawl spaces with crawl space wall insulation during the winter months. If your crawl space is used to store items like HVAC ducts, plumbing pipes, or the like, properly insulating this area can help mitigate problems caused by the temperature of an uninsulated area.
When insulating a crawl space, make sure the rim joists are insulated, as these joists rest on top of the foundation walls. The foundation must also be insulated. This has the potential to provide thermal and structural benefits. It is also critical to include some kind of vapor barrier to remove and prevent dampness from forming; if your crawl space becomes moist, you will have problems.
Other ways to insulate your crawl space include sealing all vent openings, sealing any hatchways to the outside, wall insulation, and water-resistant insulation. Furthermore, it is critical to note that before beginning crawl space insulation, all water sources in your crawl spaces must be eliminated.
Why should you use Spray Foam Insulation in your Crawl Space?
Aside from the fact that closed-cell spray foam insulation can be easily installed into difficult-to-reach spaces (such as a 30cm high crawl space), the specifications for using spray foam meet and exceed crawl space insulation requirements. Crawl spaces must be properly insulated, which means:
- Joints should be sealed.
- Prevent water from entering.
- Moisture reduction/removal
- Avoid rodent infestations.
- Insulation against heat
- Seal passageways
- Barrier against air and vapor
The brilliant yet straightforward spray foam insulation product meets all of these requirements. In addition, your crawl space will benefit from thermal and moisture protection when using closed-cell foam insulation. Closed-cell foam’s composition is ideal for preventing water from passing through; it is air impermeable, seals all air leaks, and has excellent thermal properties.
Furthermore, because this type of foam insulation is not an edible insulant for rodents, it does not create a hospitable environment. As a result, closed-cell spray foam meets the requirements for crawl space insulation and can execute and deliver the desired results.
Other insulators, such as cellulose, fiberglass, and mineral wool, do not provide the same benefits for your crawl space as closed-cell foam. For example, some absorb water and moisture and eventually sag, others do not seal off gaps, and still, others do not provide the same thermal benefits as closed-cell foam insulation.
The bottom line is that spray foam insulation offers many benefits. It’s more cost-effective than traditional forms of insulation. It can reduce your energy bills by up to 30%. It provides an additional layer of protection against moisture intrusion in your crawl space. We at Carolina Crawlspace Pros are experts in finding the best solution for your home, so please call us today!