Usually, homes have basements that serve as extra working area and storage to avoid clutter in other parts of the house. Some don’t but have crawl space instead. It can also serve as storage and as an access point for plumbing, electrical, ventilation, among others. But it does not have enough height for a standing person to fit in, hence the name.
Crawl spaces are popular among houses located in flood-prone areas as a protection. The crawl space serves as a catch basin where the water goes first before it can reach inside the house.
Because crawl spaces are so beneficial to areas like these, there are special regulations that should be followed as required by the federal government in building the said spaces in these areas of the United States.
Due to a variety of reasons, but mainly due to its having a dirt floor, moisture problem arises which can lead to mold growth and water damage. To address the issue, installation of a vapor barrier can save the day. Although it cannot possibly be an absolute remedy to the problem, it can reduce the problem in half. For best results, it is still best to treat the source of the moisture.
The big question is, how much does crawl space vapor barrier cost?
Average Cost of Crawl Space Vapor Barrier
The average cost to install vapor barrier in crawl space can vary significantly depending on the size of the project and the condition of the crawl space. As experts put it, the cost of sealing a crawl space would range between $1,500 and $15,000, with an average cost of at least $5,500 with the help of professionals.
The Family Handyman teaches us how to install crawl space vapor barrier for only a fraction of the price you would pay a professional contractor. DIY for this project would only cost you $100 to $500 according to them and gives you step by step procedure on how to go about the issue.
There are 4 main types of crawl space vapor barriers. These are:
- Reinforced Polyethylene Vapor Barriers – These are the most popular type of vapor barrier for crawl spaces and the most durable.
- Unreinforced Polyethylene Vapor Barriers – this is less durable in a crawl space environment because it does not have string reinforcement.
- Coated Woven Crawl Space Liners – although it can be a vapor barrier, it is really a vapor retarder. They have woven polyethylene ribbons making them extremely strong but can be easily compromised when scratched by sharp objects.
- Plasticized Aluminum Liners – these are mixtures of thin woven liner and plastic film with some mixed aluminum. Reviews of this product reveal that they are not really durable and can easily be compromised with the tape seams, supports, etc.
What are Included
Typical contractor estimates for your crawl space vapor issue resolution would include the following:
- Costs for materials, equipment, and transportation of the service provider to and from the project site which is your home.
- Mobilization and demobilization costs to include labor and equipment set up time, minimum hourly charges.
- The cost to prepare the project site including the cost to protect existing structures, furniture and other property which might be affected by the activity.
- The cost of cleanup and disposal of all the debris after the project has been completed.
The following items are the extra costs you need or might need to spend on as these are usually not covered in the quotation of the contractor:
- Costs of removing, relocating, repairing or modifying existing electrical and plumbing systems
- Cost of testing and remediation of hazardous materials
- If the contractor will supervise the project, 15% to 23% markup is usually added on top of the cost to install vapor barrier in crawl space
- Permit or inspection fees required by the county or local building department.
- Sales tax on materials and supplies required by the state.
Another expense you might consider is the dehumidifier to reduce the humidity at home thus preventing the occurrence of a similar issue. This ranges between $600 and $1,900. You may also be dealing with repair in the drainage system if the issue is coming from it. Typical drainage system repair could cost somewhere between $2,000 and $4,000.
Shopping for Crawl Space Vapor Barrier
The Kudzu.com offers a free locator and estimates for any type of home improvement services based on your location.
You may also check out Crawlspace Depot for your crawlspace needs at the following contact information:
2115 Frank Bird Blvd.
Rockford, TN 37853
Office Hours: M-F, 8AM-5PM
420 Prescott Street
Greensboro, NC 27401
Office Hours: M-F, 8AM-5PM
Factors Affecting Cost of Crawl Space Vapor Barrier
To know exactly how much does crawl space vapor barrier cost, it is important to know the different factors that affect the overall cost of your crawl space insulation. These factors include the following:
- Size – the cost to install vapor barrier in crawl space depends largely on the type and how much materials will be used on the project as well as the time that would be spent by the contractor to finish the job. You can insulate the entire crawl space or just a part where the majority of the problem is stemming from. Therefore, the bigger your crawl space is, the higher the cost you have to pay.
- Severity – the issue of your crawlspace can sometimes be easily overlooked as they pose no threat yet of major damage. But preventive maintenance can sometimes be the best solution and more cost effective when done immediately on the onset of the issue or problem.
- Location – places with higher humidity tend to have a more severe problem than those who are from other location. So expect a little more than what others from other areas pay.
- Labor – the cost of professional services particularly the labor contribute to the overall cost of the repair. To ensure you get the best deals, it is wise to accept different quotations as most likely the difference in the estimates would largely be attributed to the labor cost.
- Materials – the cost of vapor barrier for your crawl space depends on the type of materials you prefer or require or it can sometimes be situational.
- Hiring versus DIY – sure enough, doing anything by yourself can save you a lot of money but be sure you have enough know-how on what to do with your issues at home. Doing it the wrong way just for the sake of saving can cause more expenses than you would have imagined in case your experiment goes wrong and you would be needing to hire an expert to repair what you have done.
- The existence of a prior issue – it can also be wise to locate the source of the issue prior to addressing the aftermath. In the case of existence of molds, seek if there are leaking pipelines. Correcting the main source of the problem may entail larger cost but would be giving you so much peace of mind in the long run.
- Type of insulation – there are several ways to deal with the insulation. Your choice of what is best for your crawl space would spell the difference in the overall cost.