Have you considered crawl space modifications to your home due to less than ideal conditions or excessive moisture issues? There are a few things to consider before proceeding, such as, will it void your current termite contract.
Always consult your current termite company before starting any work that will involve crawl space modifications. For instance, if you plan on encapsulating the crawlspace, the piers and possibly more areas need to be treated due to the restrictions that come with installing heavy, tapped vapor barriers and wall insulation.
When installing a 10-mil or higher moisture barrier in the crawlspace, and the barrier is to be sealed to the foundation, leave as much of the foundation wall exposed as possible (1 to 2 feet preferably) to allow inspection for termite activity on the foundation wall. Subterranean termites can build a foot long termite tube in just a day or two and the liner is basically a man made termite tube. Areas such as the backside of a dirt filled porch, decks, fireplaces, and plumbing penetrations are considered “hot spots” in the termite industry. These are more likely to see moisture intrusion and thus are conducive to termite activity. Therefor, it is recommended that a gap, or inspection window of at least 16 inches be placed in these areas.
When repairing or installing new insulation, standard fiberglass batt insulation can be used as well as sprayed in, foam insulation. If using a spray foam method, be sure to use closed-cell foam insulation. Closed cell insulation is resistant to moisture, has a higher R-Value per inch than standard batt insulation, and can add structure strength to the sub-floor system. Open cell foam is like a sponge and will hold water when exposed to moisture or condensation. This can cause wood destroying fungi to damage a sub-floor system very quickly if the crawlspace is not conditioned.
Install a dehumidifier designed specifically for crawlspaces or condition the air in the crawl space with an air supply from the living space or HVAC system. A dehumidifier that is not rated for crawl spaces can easily malfunction due to the load it would be required to carry.
Palmetto Exterminators, a family owned and operated business has been protecting people’s health, their property and the environment since 1960. With eight locations serving customers in South Carolina, North Carolina and Georgia and two graduate Entomologists on staff, Palmetto Exterminators strives to lead the industry in innovation. For more information regarding Palmetto’s termite control programs please visit www.PalmettoExterminators.net, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.