Can I install a plastic sheet over the existing insulation under the crawl space of my house without causing mold to the insulation? The floor inside the house seems cold in the winter, and I would like to try to keep the air in the crawl space from affecting the heating of the living space.

– Glen

Hi Glen,

I would advise against it, since applying plastic to the bottom of the floor joints in the crawl space under your house can trap moisture from the air in the insulation which can result in mold and rot.

A better approach would be to cover the ground of the crawl space with plastic to reduce the moisture, and reduce the ventilation in your crawl space during the winter. This will lower the humidity while raising the temperature of the air under your home during the winter, which in turn will make the floors above feel warmer.

While it’s important to have ventilation in your crawl space, if it’s open to the outside, you should enclose the foundation, and install vents that can be closed during the winter. Foundation vents are available with a temperature sensitive metal spring that causes the vent to close automatically when the temperature drops. If your crawl space has open latticework around it, attach landscape fabric to the back of the lattice to reduce the amount of air passing through.

Good luck with your project,

    Further Information

    Editorial Contributors
    avatar for Danny Lipford

    Danny Lipford


    Danny Lipford is a home improvement expert and television personality who started his remodeling business, Lipford Construction, at the age of 21 in Mobile, Alabama. He gained national recognition as the host of the nationally syndicated television show, Today's Homeowner with Danny Lipford, which started as a small cable show in Mobile. Danny's expertise in home improvement has also led him to be a contributor to popular magazines and websites and the go-to source for advice on everything related to the home. He has made over 200 national television appearances and served as the home improvement expert for CBS's The Early Show and The Weather Channel for over a decade. Danny is also the founder of 3 Echoes Content Studio,, and Checking In With Chelsea, a décor and lifestyle blog.

    Learn More