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Old January 3rd, 2013, 07:58 PM   #1
chris1044
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Crawlspace insulation

Calling builders/tradesman...looking to insulate my crawlspace and have been reading differing info. Some says to encapsulate, others say no.

Currently it's vented with batts in between the floor joists. Like a typical house insulated like this, they're falling from the floor and aren't doing shit. Rather than just replace them now and have to redo it in five years, I'd like to do it right and be done. Crawlspace never ever has had standing water, and I've never seen any condensation/sweat on any boards/walls and foundation appears to be "dry" throughout the year...

So...vapor barrier on the floor, foam board around the perimiter of the foundation, seal off the vents...what else am I missing here? I've been reading a lot with encapsulation and moisture getting into the foundation, then moving up into the sill plate and causing rot...
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Old January 3rd, 2013, 08:07 PM   #2
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I am in a similar situation except that there is no insulation between the joists. Floor is pretty cold in spots and really pissing me off rite now. I was thinking about doing some spray foam insulation on just about everything I can get to. Inside walls of the cinderblock foundation, vertical board on top of the wall and all the undersides of the floors. Would like to hear some feedback on that
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Old January 3rd, 2013, 08:23 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Motorcitydak View Post
I am in a similar situation except that there is no insulation between the joists. Floor is pretty cold in spots and really pissing me off rite now. I was thinking about doing some spray foam insulation on just about everything I can get to. Inside walls of the cinderblock foundation, vertical board on top of the wall and all the undersides of the floors. Would like to hear some feedback on that

Well, I can tell you NOT to use batt's in the floor...total waste of $$ IMO. Even if you put them up with chicken wire so they can't fall, eventually they're going to get saturated with moisture and be worthless.

Plus it's more of a pain to install, and then if you need to repair plumbing/wiring it's got to come out. Dumb idea IMO.

While we're on the topic...I know codes vary by township, but most of MI should be similar (southern LP atleast). Code issues with removing crawlspace ventilation? Too lazy to look up right now...
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Old January 3rd, 2013, 08:27 PM   #4
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Cool, thanks. I was thinking about just buying a bunch of insulation and stuffing it up there. Glad I have not.

For the vents, I just have a few blocks around the outside that are sideways with vents on the outsides. I just shove insulation in there every winter and pull it out in the spring
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Old January 3rd, 2013, 11:14 PM   #5
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1) Soak joists with gasoline

2) Throw lit match

3) Use insurance money to buy house with basement.


That was my plan until my wife decided to remodel our house.
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Old January 4th, 2013, 06:23 AM   #6
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More money but closed cell spray foam.
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Old January 4th, 2013, 07:09 AM   #7
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Crawl space is supposed to be a conditioned part of the home. Warmed in the winter, and cooled in the summer.
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Old January 4th, 2013, 07:10 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Motorcitydak View Post
I am in a similar situation except that there is no insulation between the joists. Floor is pretty cold in spots and really pissing me off rite now. I was thinking about doing some spray foam insulation on just about everything I can get to. Inside walls of the cinderblock foundation, vertical board on top of the wall and all the undersides of the floors. Would like to hear some feedback on that
You don't want to insulate the floor. If you want the floor to be warm you need to encapsulate the outside walls and condition the Crawlspace. If you have heat running to it in the winter your floors will be warm and if you have a/c in the summer it will keep moisture from building up. If you treat it as just another room in you house you shouldn't have any issues.
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Old January 7th, 2013, 08:34 PM   #9
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As a licensed builder I can say the best idea is going to a 4x4 site and asking advice about your house.

The amount of variables that need to be answered before you can make a decision on this prove this an impossible question to answer without a visit to the house to diagnose the conditions. And no, a crawl space does not necessarily need to be conditioned. Do you want to add that much area to your heat bill?

Call someone in to look at this before you just throw money at it.
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Old January 8th, 2013, 05:36 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dhartman View Post
As a licensed builder I can say the best idea is going to a 4x4 site and asking advice about your house.

The amount of variables that need to be answered before you can make a decision on this prove this an impossible question to answer without a visit to the house to diagnose the conditions. And no, a crawl space does not necessarily need to be conditioned. Do you want to add that much area to your heat bill?

Call someone in to look at this before you just throw money at it.
1) It's the pub

2) Just because it's a 4x4 site doesn't mean there aren't intelligent people with good info. Sure, it's a 4x4 site....do you think I'm going to do exactly as someone on here says word for word? It's the internet...there's wrong answers everywhere (including building forums by hack builders).

3) You mention heating bill going up with a conditioned space. Everything I've read (scientific reports by unbiased non government agnecies) says that while your heating bill may go up in the coldest months of winter, overall it typically goes down....thoughts?

4) I get that it doesn't NEED to be conditioned. It hasn't been conditioned for more than two decades. The point is that the damn insulation eventually falls from the joists, doesn't provide much insulation factor, and I want to fix that...


Back on topic...I found this place here, and they're in Wixom, so I plan to discuss some things with them. Biased opinion, but they're right down the road.

Regardless what I do with the ventalation, everything I read from anyone says insulating your foundation results in much higher energy savings. Pretty disputable there.
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Old January 10th, 2013, 07:17 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dhartman View Post
As a licensed builder I can say the best idea is going to a 4x4 site and asking advice about your house.

The amount of variables that need to be answered before you can make a decision on this prove this an impossible question to answer without a visit to the house to diagnose the conditions. And no, a crawl space does not necessarily need to be conditioned. Do you want to add that much area to your heat bill?

Call someone in to look at this before you just throw money at it.
You do t have to condition your Crawlspace but if you don't you will have cold floors. If you do heat it and have warm floors you will be much more comfortable. One would be more comfortable in a house with air that 67* and floors that at 67* then a house where the air is 72* and the floors are 61*
You say you are concerned about the added cost of heating your Crawlspace and I would put money on it that anyone who has a properly insulated crawl and heats it does not notice a substantial increase in cost. That being said I would likely pay 20- 25% more for warm floors if that's what it took rather than walk around on freezing floors all day.
Cold feet= cold body
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Old January 10th, 2013, 07:19 AM   #12
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More money but closed cell spray foam.

This
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Old January 10th, 2013, 07:25 AM   #13
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This
i have my doubts about conditioning the crawl space. you're dealing with the temperature/moisture of the earth below the house. it's a loosing battle. go with the spray foam and or heating cable under the floor.
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Old January 10th, 2013, 07:28 AM   #14
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i have my doubts about conditioning the crawl space. you're dealing with the temperature/moisture of the earth below the house. it's a loosing battle. go with the spray foam and or heating cable under the floor.

The Cell foam is a vapor barrier as well as a fire retardent. It is exactly what is needed with the earth below. It adheres to all the surface and keeps that moisture out of it.
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Old January 11th, 2013, 07:09 AM   #15
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i have my doubts about conditioning the crawl space. you're dealing with the temperature/moisture of the earth below the house. it's a loosing battle. go with the spray foam and or heating cable under the floor.
One would also apply a vapour barrier on the ground essentially "encapsulating" the Crawlspace. I don't know about Michigan but in Ontario by code crawl spaces are to be encapsulated and conditioned.
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