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How To Keep Pipes From Freezing In Crawl Space

By January 17, 2022Winter Maintenance
Frozen pipes

Winter is a great time to watch the snow come down and cover the yard and trees. It is also time to cozy up to the fireplace. However, you also need to be concerned about the pipes in the home in colder temperatures, especially those in the crawl space. How to keep pipes from freezing in the crawl space? Clean the crawl space, check that it is sealed, and insulate the pipes.

Cleaning the crawlspace is important.

Let’s take a look below at what is required.

How Does It Work

When looking to insulate your crawl space to keep your pipes from freezing, there is a recommended step-by-step process. Let’s take a look.

Clean Your Crawl Space

The first step is to clean your crawl space. Get rid of any damaged insulation and debris. Also, look for pest droppings and rocks that could hinger the insulation from being effective.

Check the Wooden Beams and Joists Foundation

Take a look at the wooden beams and joists foundation to ensure that they are in good working condition. Any damage to the beams means they need to be replaced.

Insulated Walls and Floor

The walls and floor of the crawl space should be insulated by using 2.5″ rigid foam as this provides the best climate control. Also, research the many insulation products that can keep outdoor air out. This will keep your crawl space warm during winter and cool during summer.

Seal Opening Between Floor Joists and Walls

To ensure that your floor remains warm and cozy, you can seal the opening between floor joists and walls. Additionally, if you use a local contractor, he/she will use foam insulation. Lastly, using a fiberglass batt is not recommended as they typically absorb moisture and will attract mold.

Low-Expansion Foam

Using low-expansion foam allows you to block all entry points and air vents between the crawl space and conditioned space.

Installing a vapor barrier is important on top of the crawl space floor.

Install a Vapor Barrier

Install a 20-mil vapor barrier right on top of the crawl space floor and fasten it with duct tape. This will create a barrier that can stop moisture from building up from the ground and causing flooding, mold growth, wood rot, and musty odors.

In order to keep rodents away and prevent air loss you should seal all subfloor openings.

To prevent heat loss and freezing use heating tape to insulate the ductwork and pipes.

How Much Does It Cost

Just like with any project, there is a cost range depending upon materials needed and labor involved so it is a great idea to insulate your entire crawl space and not just the pipes. Definitely insulate pipes in the crawl space to reduce heat loss and stop cold water pipes from freezing. The national average cost for crawl space insulation ranges from $1 to $5 per square foot.

Other Recommended Maintenance

While you are learning about how to insulate a crawl space to keep your pipes from freezing, you might also want to know how much insulation you need in the attic. Keeping the attic insulated and sealed properly will help keep your pipes from freezing.

Maybe you have Pex Pipes in your home? If you do, these can freeze, expand and then go back to their original form once they thaw. However, you also need to take care in making sure they don’t freeze, just like the other pipes in your home. One of the ways to do this is to make sure that the temperature in the home is above 55 degrees.

Lastly, while you are insulating pipes, another place to insulate is the sliding glass doors. Keeping the warm air inside, especially during the winter is important. You can install heavy curtains, vacuum the door track, add or replace the weather stripping, buy a plastic window kit or caulk the sliding doors.

When Do I Call A Professional

In this case, you might want to consider calling a professionally licensed plumber. He or she can offer up tips on how to insulate your pipes and keep them from freezing in your crawl space. It’s also possible that they are better served for accessing your crawl space due to your inability to get there. Call on your local home inspection company to suggest the most reputable professionally licensed plumber who can assist you with your crawl space needs.

Conclusion

Various weather conditions can prompt a plumbing freeze concern. No matter where your pipes are located, you will want to ensure that they do not freeze. Also, in many cases, accessing a crawl space can be difficult for most. Hiring a professionally licensed plumber to get into your crawl space to insulate your pipes is a great idea.

Call your local home inspection team to determine if you have other project needs and get a referral for a reputable professionally licensed plumber at that time. Call on Boggs Inspection Services to get your yearly home inspection completed in the Lacey, WA, and surrounding areas.

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