No More Mold Home-Attic Insulation & Crawl Space Encapsulation

Completion date: March 7, 2017

Location: SW Portland, OR

Solutions provided:

This couple, in a lovely SW Portland neighborhood, wanted to get rid of mold inside their home--it was growing on walls when furniture was nearby. Their home was also extra dusty. Plus, they wanted a solution for the cold walls. They found Josh Lowe’s Dr. Energy Saver online and called us because of all the positive reviews we have.

Our Energy Consultant investigated and found mold under their home! (see photo) As 50% of the air you breathe comes from under your home, they were alarmed. It had been more than 20 years since they had any insulation added to their attic, so we also investigated the attic. The old blown-in paper insulation was hardly four inches high and was not doing much to keep their heat in the house in the winter; it had partially decomposed. (see photo)


Since the home was built in 1947, it was no wonder they had not been comfortable in their home all these years—60 years ago, there were no good insulation solutions. The most effective way to stop the mold growing, reduce dust, and to keep them more comfortable would be to re-insulate the attic and encapsulate the crawl space. The walls were balloon framing so instead of insulating the walls, the insulation and sealing of the attic and crawl space was going to help the walls feel warmer due to the Stack Effect.

The Insulation Crew from Josh Lowe’s Dr. Energy Saver worked on their house from top to bottom.

a) ATTIC: The crew removed the old, dirty insulation, sealed the air leak spots (see photo), and then blew in cellulose (see final photo). This will help reduce their heating and cooling costs by keeping the air this couple paid to condition inside their home, rather than leaking outside.

b) CRAWL SPACE: The crawl space was cleaned up and old insulation was removed. The crew encapsulated the crawl space with drainage matting, Terra Block floor insulation, and the 20-mil thick crawl space liner. The homeowner also chose to have the SmartDrain plumbing leak system installed that sounds an alarm that tells you there is water leak under the home. The spray foam crew sealed the foundation walls with spray foam.

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