Having the right water protection for your Richmond, Virginia, home is more important than most people realize, even though most moisture barrier companies will tell you that waterproofing is not the first thing on a homeowner’s mind. While water vapor from humidity may not seem like something to worry about, it can cause severe damage to the underlying structure of your home, including mold and wood rot. As an experienced moisture barrier company, we know that it is easier to prevent moisture problems before they happen than to deal with water damage after it occurs.
How Does Moisture Get in My Crawlspace?
Without a moisture barrier installed by a professional company, moisture and water vapor enters your crawlspace through the earth around your home, from any number of plumbing issues, or through moisture entering the crawlspace vents.
Then, as warm air rises through your home and leaves through the upper levels, the air in your crawlspace air is pulled up into your home with it – bringing with it humidity, mold spores, dust mite waste, and odors. Unless these are things you want to live with, you need to hire a professional Richmond, Virginia, moisture barrier company, such as Eco Pest Control.
It gets worse, though. Unprotected, your crawlspace can become a breeding ground for mice, rats, snakes, and other creatures that thrive in damp and dark habitats.
Do I Need a Moisture Barrier?
If you have a crawlspace underneath your home, then, yes, you need a moisture barrier installed by a reputable company, such as Eco Pest Control. A moisture barrier not only helps prevent moisture from entering your home, but also can help protect against destructive insects such as termites and carpenter ants. These pests are attracted to moisture, are hard to eradicate, and can cause severe damage to your home.
However, using a moisture barrier and dehumidifier together in your crawlspace – installed by a professional moisture barrier company – can dramatically decrease the amount of moisture present in your home, while also keeping invading pests at bay.
Wait a minute, you say, my contractor installed plastic sheeting in my crawlspace when my home was built. Aren’t I already protected? The answer to your question is, “Probably not.” If you see what you believe to be a moisture barrier already in place, put in by the contractor who built your house, it is most likely a very thin, non-fire-retardant 4-mil or 6-mil plastic liner that does little good, because air can still enter from crawlspace doors, vents, pipes, or other permeable openings. You need a 15-mil liner that fully encapsulates your crawlspace, which is even more reason to hire a professional Richmond, Virginia moisture barrier company, as they have the experience to fully encapsulate the area underneath your home.
What’s more, most standard insulation moisture barriers installed in crawlspaces by residential building contractors will allow moisture and mold to soak through the material, weighing it down and causing it to crumple onto the floor. As you might guess, that is not good for your home.
Furthermore, most contractor-installed barriers will either be attached by seal tape or stapled to the wall. The problem with these methods is that it not only defeats the purpose of the liner by injecting holes into it, but also creates a rumpled-looking effect in the crawlspace. Using an adhesive liner – a technique generally offered only by moisture barrier companies – ensures longevity, and you will also appreciate the cleaner and tidier look. The moisture barrier must cover all areas, including the foundation walls and piers.
What’s the Difference Between a Moisture Barrier and Moisture Barrier?
The terms moisture barrier and vapor barrier are often used interchangeably, but are they the same? Not to moisture barrier companies, even though both are designed to keep moisture out of your home. The key difference between a moisture barrier and a vapor barrier is that the former is better at keeping out liquids, while the latter is better at keeping out water in its gaseous state.
Moisture barrier companies use polyethylene sheets to protect your home, which has a Class 1 permeability rating, as defined by the International Residential Code. At Eco Pest Control, the leading moisture barrier company in the greater Richmond, Virginia, area, we use a durable, 100% reinforced 15-mil waterproof barrier that is anti-microbial, fire-retardant, and puncture resistant – all while protecting your home against moisture and vapor. Below are the three classes as defined by the International Residential Code.
- Class 1 covers the moisture barriers with the lowest permeability, which include metal, glass, polyethylene sheets, or other highly effective materials.
- Class 2 covers materials such as extruded polystyrene and plywood.
- Class 3 comprises materials such as gypsum board, concrete blocks, house wrap, and more.
What are the Benefits of a Moisture Barrier?
Moisture barriers installed by professional companies, offer 12 important benefits:
- Reduced risk of mold
- Reduced risk of mildew
- Reduced risk of wood rot
- Reduced risk of floor failure
- Increased insulation R-values
- Decreased heating and cooling bills
- Fewer odors
- Reduced risk of insects
- Reduced risk of dust mites
- Reduced risk of aggravated allergies
- Improved storage environment
- Improved indoor air quality
Do I Need to Replace My Existing Moisture Barrier?
If a professional company installed your moisture barrier, then it should last for many years. Still, there are times when it might need to be repaired or replaced. If your home has encountered one or more of these three issues, then you should call us to have your crawlspace inspected.
- There is water in your crawlspace. If you discover standing water in your crawlspace, then you either have a plumbing issue or a drainage issue. Whichever it is, it needs to be fixed, as standing water creates a moisture-rich environment that can wreak havoc on your home. We can help find the source of the water and determine if the moisture barrier must be replaced.
- There is evidence that rodents and/or wildlife have been in your crawlspace. Rodents and other wildlife, such as raccoons, can easily tear up the plastic sheeting that serves as your moisture barrier. That’s not all. They can also leave behind droppings and other contaminants. It is important to not only find and seal animal entrances, but also ensure they have all been removed from the crawlspace before any repairs are made.
- There has been considerable damage caused by people crawling around under your home. If you installed cable service, an alarm system, or a similar service since you outfitted your crawlspace with a moisture barrier, then various contractors have likely been crawling around in your crawlspace. All this activity can cause considerable damage to your moisture barrier.
An inspection of your moisture barrier will determine if simple repairs can resolve any problems you might be experiencing or if the entire moisture barrier must be replaced. An inspection can determine the best course of action to get your home’s crawlspace back in order.
Do I Really Need to Hire a Moisture Barrier Company?
If you want the best solution for your problem, then, yes, you need to hire a professional moisture barrier company for your Richmond, Virginia, home. The bottom line is that a durable, 100% reinforced 15-mil moisture and vapor barrier that is waterproof, anti-microbial, fire-retardant, and puncture resistant – and installed using an adhesive strip – can transform a moist, unhealthy crawlspace into a clean, sanitary environment that no longer promotes mold, odors, pests, and even potential infestation. You can rest assured that the crawlspace can even be used for storage purposes and fulfill its purpose of promoting healthy air circulation and reducing overall humidity in the house.
We offer customized solutions because we know that no two homes or situations are alike. We pride ourselves in being able to provide solutions that will meet your needs within your budget. As the leading moisture barrier company in the greater Richmond, Virginia, area, we do everything from replacing your old crawlspace door to a complete crawlspace encapsulation.
Why Eco Pest Control is the Leading Moisture Barrier Company in the Greater Richmond Area
If your home has a crawlspace, then chances are you need a moisture barrier installed by Eco Pest Control. What sets us apart? Here are four reasons you should trust your moisture barrier to us.
- We use top-of-the-line products that will not deteriorate, rip, and stop working in only a few years.
- The products we use come with warranties.
- We also warranty our work.
- We offer a 100% customer satisfaction guarantee. If you are not fully satisfied with the crawl space vapor and moisture barrier installed by our company, then we will come back for free and make it right.