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dj51

03:44PM | 12/11/01
Member Since: 12/10/01
2 lifetime posts
Bvbasement
I'm building a new home in northern Michigan over a crawl space. I'm wondering how to best insulate it. It has 9 vents and a concrete floor and is appro 45" tall. I have a 90 plus furnace and an electric low boy water heater thats going into the crawl. I insulated the outside with 2" blue foam board to ground level. What would be the best way to insulate the interior of the crawl so I don't have a problem with freezing pipes or water tank. Thanks

Jay J

08:15AM | 12/12/01
Member Since: 10/26/00
782 lifetime posts
Hi df51,

First, if you're going to put those units in the crawl, DO realize what it's going to be like to service them!!! It's a mess and MORE expensive!

Second, you need to now treat the crawl as if it were another room in the house. It means it probably has to have at least a 55 degree minimum operating temperature. I don't know how cold your crawl will get but with all those vents, it sounds like it will get BELOW 55 degrees. Be SURE to insulate the floor above the crawl with R-30 or better insulation. Buy some Pipe Insulation too. You need to find out if you should 'close off' the vents in Winter, or not. Here, in SE PA, we leave them open. MI may be different.

IMHO, I think it's a bad idea to put those units in the crawl. If you're strapped for space, there are alternatives. For one, there are on-demand hot water units (tankless hot water units.) Talk to a Pro in that field for ideas and options.

My best to ya and hope this helps.

Jay J -Moderator

PS: God Bless America!

rpxlpx

07:20AM | 12/14/01
Member Since: 03/13/00
1675 lifetime posts
Put a water heater blanket on the water heater, but don't let it touch the soil. (I had termites get into one - they actually liked the insulation.)

dj51

01:08PM | 12/14/01
Member Since: 12/10/01
2 lifetime posts
Thanks for the replies. Most of the homes in the area have their furnaces in the crawl, but they don't have a concrete floor. I was wondering if I should put foam board on the inside walls. The vents can be covered in the winter. The furnace will have one heat vent into the crawl. Any other suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks again

Don Oliver

05:50PM | 12/16/01
Member Since: 12/15/01
1 lifetime posts
Hi,
My situation is similar, although the climate here is much milder, and freezing is not a problem.
I have a 10 year-old house with unheated crawl space. There is fiberglass batt insulation between the floor joists.
A friend who works on new home construction told me once that a common practice is to cut a hole in the floor (he suggested under the refrigerator, because the fridge generates excess heat anyway) and blow air into the crawl space.
There would be no insulation between the floor joists, and this would warm the floor.
He is no longer here, so I can't get specific information, and can find no info on this practice on the web.
Does anyone know more about this?
If it is a good practice, maybe the original poster could consider it also.

Thanks,
Don Oliver

Jay J

05:59AM | 12/17/01
Member Since: 10/26/00
782 lifetime posts
Hi df51,

I'm sorry, guy, but I can't speak of putting anything in a crawlspace, especially a heater. You might want to look into a tankless system. Maybe someone else can 'coax' you into putting your unit in the crawl ...

RE: Don Oliver - I've never heard of it. Maybe there's something you're not mentioning. Perhaps you should talk to other Professionals about the idea and come back w/more info. When you do come back, start a new post ...

My best to ya and hope this helps.

Jay J -Moderator

PS: God Bless America!

rpxlpx

03:05AM | 12/18/01
Member Since: 03/13/00
1675 lifetime posts
Where I live in North Carolina, basements are rare, garages are not too common, and equipment in the crawl space is the norm. Four of the five water heaters that I own are in crawl spaces, along with the air handlers for the heat pumps. The fifth is in a closet with the gas furnace.

[This message has been edited by rpxlpx (edited December 18, 2001).]

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