Does My Crawlspace Need a Dehumidifier?

With summer coming to a close, we can all be thankful to escape the heat and humidity. Those with an encapsulated crawl space are even more so, knowing that their crawl space has managed to stay dry and relaxed through the hot summer months. But, as the summers are getting hotter, an encapsulation might not be enough for all crawl spaces. 

While your crawl space might be one of those places in your home that is out of sight, it shouldn’t be entirely out of mind. Most people are surprised to hear when we tell them that about 60 percent of the air they breathe in their homes comes from their crawl spaces. Maintaining a healthy crawl space means keeping a healthy home for you and your family. 

One of the most asked questions about crawl spaces has to do with dehumidifiers. A dehumidifier maintains and regulates the humidity levels in your crawl space, just as it would in other places in your home. We are here to help you, whether or not you need a dehumidifier installed in your crawl space today, it’s important to gather all the information you can while in the decision-making process.

What do crawl space dehumidifiers do?

A dehumidifier helps maintain humidity and moisture in your crawl space. It takes in the warm, moist air, and lets out dry air. Dehumidifiers are the most efficient way to maintain moisture and humidity in your crawl space. 

When a crawl space gets too humid or the moisture levels are too high, it can cause a lot of damage such as mold, wood rot, and even termite infestation; all of which can make their way up to the rest of your home.

What should the humidity and moisture levels be in my crawl space?

It can be hard to determine this without the right tools or level of expertise, but luckily with our free inspection offer, we can check all of these levels for you. 

Relative humidity, or RH, measures moisture in the air within the environment it’s being measured in. Ideally, keeping the crawl space between 50-60% RH creates a dry and sustainable environment, with wood moisture levels at or around 8-12%. RH levels above 60% increase the likelihood that the wood moisture begins to rise, creating a hospitable environment for fungal growth. If RH is too low, and being mechanically controlled to operate at a lower level, then an overly dried crawl space can have the inverse effect by reducing levels so much that the wood begins to crack and shrink.

Again, crawl space or basement with healthy moisture and humidity levels will help keep mold, pests, and wood rot farther away from your home.

Should I get a dehumidifier for my encapsulated crawl space?

Many homes are moving towards having an encapsulated crawl space. A crawl space encapsulation means a barrier is laid down and over your crawl space, usually  heavy-duty polyethylene, that keeps moisture levels maintained. However, while an encapsulated crawl space slows down the evaporation of moisture, it does not help with dew point, which means that once the moisture does begin to condensate, it can have trouble ridding it on its own. 

A dehumidifier would help, if not solve, this problem. So, encapsulation is a good start to keeping moisture and humidity levels down, but a dehumidifier should be added.

Which crawl space dehumidifier should I get?

Several highly rated dehumidifier brands are out there, and they all have pros and cons. However, the most important thing is that you get a dehumidifier that fits the size and need of your crawl space. It can be hard to determine what your crawl space needs, but our experts are here to help and give you suggestions for what your crawl space might need. At Crawlspace Medic, our inspectors will provide you with the best dehumidifier option for your crawl space, based on its conditions and size. 

Your crawl space is one of the most important “rooms” in your house, and more often than not, it gets overlooked. It is a major player in maintaining your home’s health and structural integrity. So much of this depends on conditions like humidity, moisture, and temperature. 

A dehumidifier is the most efficient way to ensure the climate and atmosphere stay adequate and fit to support your home and your family. Book your free inspection with us today to get your free inspection.

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