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Old 04-25-2013, 12:08 PM   #1
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Crawl Space Cleanup/Insulation


I'm currently attempting a bathroom remodel, and as I figured, one project leads to another. In the crawl space beneath the bathroom there is blown insulation between the joists. I believe everyone calls it wet spray or dense pack...I'm not sure? The house was built in 1978. I've had to remove a significant portion of it to reveal my drain lines, supply lines, etc. and noticed where some minor leaking had occurred that I would not have noticed unless I had removed the insulation.

Now that I'm in the midst of this insulation removal, I'm wondering if the insulation itself is a good idea at all. Its an unconditioned crawl space with vents and a barrier, but it also gets wet from ground water in the cold months. I am making sure my gutters are up to snuff and will contemplate a perimeter drain as well if it doesn't dry out. There's also a basin with a sump, but I've never been satisfied with any moisture.

I've read some recent links regarding conditioned vs. unconditioned spaces, but at this point I'm seeing the bottom of the floor joists NOT being covered, insulation covering some vital plumbing areas, and I'm wondering if I'm exposing those uncovered joist bottoms to moisture as previous articles suggest. I'm figuring while I'm down there, if removing ALL the insulation would be a bad idea? I could install rigid insulation at some point, but really would prefer no insulation. It just seems like joist insulation in crawl spaces hurts more than it helps, especially if the joists aren't completely covered. I really won't be able to convert it to a conditioned space anytime soon, but in a year or so would love to do so.


Last edited by Outdoorbum; 04-25-2013 at 12:11 PM.
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Old 04-26-2013, 07:38 AM   #2
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Crawl Space Cleanup/Insulation


Where I live, insulation between the floor joists is required by code. I'm sure Oregon doesn't get as cold as WV, but removing all that insulation would probably increase your heating bill.

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Old 04-26-2013, 04:00 PM   #3
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Crawl Space Cleanup/Insulation


It gets fairly cold here, and in the building code they allow uninsulated floors if you've constructed a sealed and conditioned crawlspace. I just wonder since the insulation doesn't cover the joists completely, if i would be better off removing it so the joists warm and subsequently prevent moisture. Not terribly energy efficient I know, but its the moisture I'm most concerned with currently.
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Old 04-27-2013, 06:27 AM   #4
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Crawl Space Cleanup/Insulation


What are you considering "fairly cold?" Zero degrees on a few mornings is not unusual here, nor are days where the high never gets up to 32 degrees. But anyway, it sounds like what you really need to address is the moisture. Is water actually leaking into the crawl space from outside? Is the ground in the crawl space covered? If not, a vapor barrier like 6 mil poly might be all you need to do.
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