East Cooper residents living in a crawlspace home should have an inspection for moisture conditions in their crawlspace annually. It’s important to monitor the moisture conditions in your crawlspace to prevent fungus growth that may eventually lead to rot and wood decay. High levels of moisture in the crawlspace may also lead to your interior wood floors cupping or musty odors in your home. An experienced inspector will be able to tell you the moisture content in your substructure. A moisture content reading below 20% is considered good, readings above 20% are considered excessive, readings above 28% are very dangerous to your substructure and the “health” of your home.
Basically there are three main factors that contribute to an increase in moisture in your crawlspace.
1. Evaporation from the earth.
2. HVAC lines may sweat causing condensation in the crawlspace.
3. Mother Nature. Humid air moving into the crawlspace area during times of high humidity.
Sometimes these three factors are all working together to create a perfect “moisture storm” in your crawlspace. Installing a vapor barrier will control evaporation from the earth. Usually, a six millimeter vapor barrier does the job and will hold up for 10-15 years.
According to the Rules and Regulations of the South Carolina Pesticide Control Act, in Section 27-1085 titled South Carolina Standards for the Prevention or Control of Wood Destroying Organisms, Section J Paragraph (2) states “If moisture condensation of soil moisture is occurring on the substructure wood, it can be prevented by installing a vapor barrier. An adequate barrier can be made by covering the soil under the structure with polyethylene sheets. Normally not more than 70% to 80% of the crawlspace should be covered.
East Cooper Termite and Pest Solutions can provide a professional moisture inspection. Your inspection will include accurate moisture reading, pictures, and solutions if you have a problem. We will take the time to explain the inspection so you have a clear understanding of the moisture conditions in your crawlspace.