Case Studies

Cowleys Pest Services Case Studies: Moisture in crawl space leads owner to encapsulate in Princeton, NJ

Friday, August 17th, 2018 by Michael Senz


A homeowner in Princeton, NJ, had ongoing water intrusion and humidity issues in his crawl space, and he was concerned, rightly so, that these water and moisture problems could trigger mold growth that could adversely affect his entire home. Although no one likes dealing with unexpected home repairs, he knew that something had to be done, and delay would just make the problem worse and even more expensive to fix.  

Crawl spaces are popular foundations throughout New Jersey for a number or reasons, including cost and a high water table in many areas. Unfortunately, these seldom visited areas “down below” can be  the source of numerous problems for homeowners. Vented crawl spaces allow hot humid air to enter, especially during the summer months, which can lead to mold growth. Also, water intrusion issues with crawl spaces often leads to all sorts of pest infestations — termites and other insects, as well as rodents and other wildlife. 


There are a number of ways to improve crawl spaces. This homeowner wanted a long-term solution where he would not have to revisit this problem year after year. He decided to invest in a full “CleanSpace” installation to alleviate any further water issues. With CleanSpacing, encapsulates the entire crawl space, sealing this area from he outdoor elements. Doing so prevents chronic water and moisture build-up, and all the other problems that follow. Homeowners who encapsulate their crawl spaces find that those musty crawl space odors that permeate the living areas of the home go away, and the home’s indoor air quality is substantially improved.  

Our CleanSpacing installation included protective wrapping of the walls and pillars with 12-mil thick rolls, and installation of a heavy-duty tear-resistant 20-mil CleanSpace vinyl liner on the floor. We also installed a high-grade “Smartpump” in the lowest depression of the crawl. These sump pumps, built with top-quality motors and components, are designed to handle high water volume and long run times. The pumps also have a battery backup system so they will continue to work even if you lose power, which, unfortunately in New Jersey, seems to happen more often than it should. 

Finally, to prevent further crawl space humidity issues, we installed a SaniDry Sedona dehumidifier. With these dehumidifiers, indoor humidity is kept at levels where mold cannot grow. They operate automatically, using a built-in hygrometer to turn on and off, an we installed it so that the extracted water would drain directly into the sump pump. The homeowner does not have to worry about overflowing water trays and venturing into the crawl space to check on it.