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Should I Remove Insulation From My Crawl Space?

Fiberglass insulation sprawled across lawn, man organizing it for cleanup.

Wondering if you should remove the insulation from your home’s crawl space? Crawl space insulation can be a great way to make sure your home is comfortable year-round and more energy efficient. But are there times when it might make sense to remove the insulation in your crawl space? The answer is yes. In some cases, you should remove crawl space insulation. In this blog post, we’ll explore exactly what crawl space insulation is, examine why you might want to remove it, explain the best way to get a clean, dry crawl space, and more. 

What Is Crawl Space Insulation?

Crawl space insulation is basically a layer of material that goes between your house’s floor and the crawl space underneath. The purpose of this insulation is to help regulate the temperature inside your home. If you don’t have crawl space insulation, your floors will be colder because heat escapes through the floorboards and into the crawl space. This can make for some pretty uncomfortable living conditions, especially during the colder months.

Should I Remove Insulation From My Crawl Space?

If the insulation is wet, it can actually end up causing more harm than good by trapping moisture and encouraging mold growth. Additionally, if there are any pests (like rodents or insects) living in your crawl space, they may have made the insulation their home and it could be acting as a breeding ground for them. In these cases, you should remove and replace the insulation. 

On the other hand, if your insulation is in good condition and there are no major issues with your crawl space, then there’s no need to remove it. As noted above, insulation is beneficial in helping keep your home more energy efficient by preventing heat loss through the floor.

If you’re unsure whether your insulation needs to be removed, contact a professional who can come and assess the situation for you. They’ll be able to tell you if the insulation is causing any problems.

dangling, ruined fiberglass insulation in a crawl space.

Why Crawl Space Insulation Is Insufficient on Its Own

Crawl space insulation is great for regulating temperature, but it doesn’t address other key concerns such as moisture, pests, and overall air quality. Without sealing the vents and covering the crawl space walls and floor with a vapor barrier, your crawl space can become a breeding ground for mold, which can create health hazards and cause damage to the wooden structures.

The Best Way to Get a Clean, Dry Crawl Space: Insulate, Encapsulate, and Install a Drain Tile System

If you want a clean, dry crawl space, insulation along with encapsulation and a drain tile system is the way to go. Since we’ve already discussed crawl space insulation, here’s a brief summary of crawl space encapsulation and a drain tile system:

What Is Crawl Space Encapsulation?

Fully encapsulated crawl space with a vapor barrier and dehumidifier in frame.

Crawl space encapsulation is a process that involves sealing the vents and covering the floor and walls of the crawl space with a thick, vapor-retarding barrier. This helps create an airtight seal, preventing moisture and air from getting in.  

Encapsulation is done because damp crawl spaces can be a serious problem. Not only can they cause damage to the wooden structures in the crawl space, they can also create a perfect environment for mold to thrive in. By encapsulating your crawl space, you can help improve the air quality in your home and protect your foundation from moisture damage. 

What Is a Drain Tile System?

A drain tile system is a type of drainage system installed around the perimeter of a foundation at the footing level or around the inside perimeter of the crawl space. The system works by collecting excess groundwater and directing it away from the house to a designated drainage area, such as a storm drain. A drain tile system keeps the ground around the crawl space dry and is an important investment, especially if you live in an area prone to heavy rainfall or flooding.  

Other Ways to Help Keep Your Crawl Space Dry

In addition to the above, there are other things you can do to help keep your crawl space dry. These include the following:

  • Regrade your yard, if necessary – This means sloping the ground away from your house to prevent water from draining toward the foundation and seeping into the crawl space. It’s a simple solution that can often make a big difference.
  • Use downspout extensions – These help direct rainwater farther away from your home before release, reducing the amount of moisture your foundation has to deal with on a regular basis. This can be especially helpful in areas with heavy rainfall.
  • Clean gutters regularly – When gutters are clogged, rainwater can overflow, run down the side of the house, and saturate the ground around the foundation. A few minutes of gutter maintenance every few months can save you a lot of hassle down the line.

If you’re concerned about the insulation in your home’s crawl space, contact us today to schedule a free crawl space inspection and receive a repair estimate! 

Man standing on a ladder, measuring the length and level of a home's gutter system.

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