09:57AM | 12/02/05
Member Since: 12/01/05
2 lifetime posts

Every winter our house has a damp must smell that appears to be coming from our damp crawl space. Over the last few years, we have installed rain gutters, drainage and new windows (had a huge condesation problem). Although the problem has improved, we are still getting a little mold and the damp musty smell is still a problem. We are on a wood subfloor, all our ducting is under the house, we have hard pan with sandy soil on top. I have been resarching this issue online and the info is conflicting. Would you recommend a vapor barrier or a ventilation system? The ventilation systems I've been looking at seem to shut off with colder temps and since winter is the only time we have this issue, will those work for us. We live in California, so extremely cold weather is not an issue for us, but we will have many nights of freezing temps. Very confused and in info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for your time!!


04:19PM | 12/02/05
Member Since: 04/25/05
1915 lifetime posts
I am not as familar with your climate to make a detailed suggestion.

But a vapor barrier over the ground in the crawlspace is the first order.

Even "dry" dirt can release lots of moisture.

Now in the area east of the Rockies and all except the most northern areas I thing that a sealed, conditioned crawlspace is the best option.

No outside ventalation. Vented crawlspace allow warm MOIST summeer air in, but with the relatively coolness, made worse from AC, the RH can get very high and even start to condesne. And in the winter it allows cold air in.

Insulate the fondation walls to keep the crawlspace area warm in the winter and cool in the summer.

AFAIK that will work in any climate, but I don't know if it is needed in yours or not.

You might do some looking at including Houses that Work and in the Reference section.

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