Rodent Infestation Solution: Which Works Best - Crawl Space Encapsulation, Crawl Space Insulation, Or Rat Slab Installation?
Rodents like squirrels, mice, chipmunks, voles, and marmots can cause huge problems both for the humans and the structure of your home. They can damage your belongings and your home from the inside out.
Rodents also pose threats to the health and comfort of humans through their skin, feces, and urine. They carry a bunch of disease-causing parasites and ticks that cause rocky mountain spotted fever or Lyme disease. Their saliva, urine, and droppings can also possibly transmit hantavirus which causes hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS), a severe and fatal respiratory illness that affects humans.
Having these rodents around your house increases the risks of you and your family of getting bitten if you accidentally disturb them. This will not leave you wounded and injured but it will as well increase your chance of contracting certain types of diseases.
Thus, rodents need to be eliminated as soon as you notice their existence. Or better yet, prevent them from entering and dwelling in your house.
How can rodents enter your homes?
Rodents can enter homes in different entry points. They can enter your house through the holes in the roof, vents, chimney, gaps around windows, and cracks in walls. They can also burrow from the outside ground of your home to your dirt crawl space.
Where do rodents dwell?
Rodents typically dwell in damp, dark, and secluded areas of your home like in the crawl space. They usually live in small to very large colonies.
Ways to get rid of rodents in the crawl space
Rodent infestation is a costly, time-consuming, and tricky remediation projects. With the ability of rodents to breed quickly, it makes it possible for them to multiply in number in just a short span of time. This can make rodent infestation a more serious problem and rodent remediation more challenging.
Fortunately, there are different ways to get rid of rodents in the crawl space. The key to keeping rodents away from your crawl space, though, is to keep the area clean and dry at all times. You can achieve this through crawl space insulation, encapsulation, or rat slab.
- Crawl Space Insulation
Crawl space insulation is the process of covering the walls, ceilings, and ground of the crawl space as well as the foundation with an insulating material such as rigid foam insulation board or spray foam. This process will cover all cracks and openings in the crawl space, thus, preventing the rodents from entering through such possible entry points.
- Rat Slab
A rat slab is a layer of concrete poured into the ground of the crawl space. The purpose of a rat slab is more than just giving the building a more solid foundation and a more stable structure, but it also helps keep excess moisture at bay by preventing groundwater from getting into and accumulating in the surface of the crawl space. It also makes the area look nicer, cleaner, and drier.
Encapsulation involves sealing off the crawl space with impervious material like polyethylene barrier and swimming pool liner. This method is also commonly used in waterproofing the area.
By covering the foundation of the house as well as the ground, walls, and ceiling of the crawl space with impervious material, you can prevent the fluid and moisture from the outside and the ground to pass through the crawl space, thus keeping the area moisture-free and giving no room for rodents to stay.
Crawl Space Insulation vs Encapsulation vs Rat Slab
Rodents eat up things they see including non-edible items like furniture, walls, electrical wirings, and even the foundation of your home, lawn, and landscaping. They can also bite up the materials used in insulation and encapsulation. Though these two methods help fix rodent infestation problems, their effects are rather temporary and short-term. When the rodents start to eat up the materials, the effectivity and efficiency of both encapsulation and insulation are compromised.
The concrete rat slab, on the other end, acts as a solid barrier between the soil below the crawl space and the crawl space. Concrete is something rodents can simply bite up. This makes it impossible for them to enter the house through the crawl space by burrowing from the outside to the inside ground.
As far as rodent infestation solution is concerned, both crawl space insulation and encapsulation can fail, while a rat slab can offer a lasting and more reliable solution.