How Can I Keep Moisture Out of a Crawlspace?

Brick home with a locked crawl space
Crawl spaces have their advantages — just make sure you keep moisture out of them.

Danny and Joe welcome callers’ questions each week on the Today’s Homeowner Radio Show.

Here’s a question we often receive, about one of the home’s most important features: the foundation.

Robert in Virginia says, “What is your opinion of crawl space foundations? Avoid them? Encapsulate? Other…? They are popular in Virginia Beach, but I am skeptical.

“I have lived in 46 places in 26 cities in 15 states (Maine to Florida to New Orleans to Denver) and have never lived with one.

“They seem to be an invitation to bugs, wood rot, mold and worse. FYI, I am looking for a new home … and am concerned about buying a house with a crawl space and why would someone build it.”

Hand on top of stone wool insulation
For homes with crawlspace foundations, adding stone wool insulation to the underside of the flooring can protect the interior from moisture. (Rockwool)

First, the underside of the home’s flooring should be insulated to protect it from groundwater. We always recommend Rockwool, a stone wool insulation, because it’s highly moisture-resistant.

That’s one piece of the three-part solution to properly insulate your crawlspace.

Second, we recommend installing weighted-down plastic on the ground, which will keep any moisture from rising up.

For ventilation, Robert needs at least one square foot by every 150 square feet of living area to allow the air to flow through.

Listen to the embedded audio clip above for more information!

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