Extreme Condensation after Job Completion | Efficacy of Soda Blasting


Hey, Michael Church, Crawl Space Ninja, and
we are back at the extreme condensation crawl space. We’re going to take a look. The ninjas got all done, got everything soda
blasted, got our package installed, and let’s go take a look and see what it looks like. Okay. We are in the extreme condensation crawl space. A couple things I wanted to mention that Crawl
Space Ninja does that’s a little different than a lot of the competition we have out
there is in the entrance way, we try to double up on vapor barrier when possible. That way as you come in, it’s kind of like
the part of the crawl space that gets the most traffic. We also try to leave a little bit of a tape
and vapor barrier behind so that way if the homeowner gets in here and they accidentally
cut something or a contractor gets in here, it gives the homeowner an opportunity to repair
the plastic. Let’s look at what we did up here. We soda blasted all of the crawl space. All right? We applied the disinfectant and then applied
a protectant. As you might be able to see in the video,
a lot of the wood actually has a white tracer on it. That way as they’re applying the protectant,
they can see that as they’re putting it on and then it gives our inspector the opportunity
to see that as well. We also made sure we had our termite gap. We got our foam board behind the plastic. Used our Hilti GX 3 to apply the plastic over
the foam board and we hooked up the foam board with the DX 5. Remember, you DIYers out there, if you want
to lease the DX 5 and the GX 3 on our webpage now, you can do that if you decide you want
to go through and knock this plastic and foam board out real fast. You, of course can, do the Christmas tree
fasteners as well. Then we also make sure we spray foam, any
kind of intrusions that would come across. We spray foam the boots, any major penetrations
and electrical. As you can see over there where Pedro is sitting,
we’ll pan over there in just a minute, we’ve got the vents sealed up. We had to do it a different way than usual. We had to seal each part of the vent so that
way we make sure the crawl space is sealed except for the air that we want to exit out
of the crawl space through our active ventilation system. Our active ventilation fan, the Lomanco PCV1
installed. What this is doing is it is actually drawing
air out of the crawl space. Of course, if you’ve seen any of our videos,
you know that it’s really important to make sure you don’t create a soil gas problem by
encapsulating the crawl space. What many companies do, and I can’t believe
they still do this because we’ve had a lot of videos telling them that they’re not supposed
to do this, but they still do it, some of them have caught on, but you want to make
sure that you draw air out of the crawl space on a continual basis. Of course, the whisper fan or the Lomanco
PCV1 is a great way to do that. Most crawl space companies, they’ll install
one of these and then they’ll adjust the humidity or adjust the fan to only run when the humidity
is a certain level, but what we want is we want the fan to run all the time. We just go ahead and turn it on on, so that
way it’s constantly running. Just putting the crawl space under a little
bit of negative pressure just to make sure all those soil gases are being taken out of
the crawl space on a regular basis. Now I’m next to the Aprilaire dehumidifier. As you can see, it is at 57% relative humidity. Now, the cool thing about the Aprilaire is
it actually tests based on dewpoint. All right? It’s trying to get the dewpoint to the proper
level down here to prevent condensation. But we have had homeowners that have gotten
April air from us and their crawl space is really humid or they’re not 100% sure if the
Aprilaire is working. What you can do is you can take your humidity
reader… Now, this is the intake side. Okay? You can take your humidity reader and you
can put it on the blowing out side and test the humidity. We’ll do that here. Right here you can see the humidity is dropping
because the air coming out of the dehumidifier is very low. Typically this Aprilaire machine will produce
between 30 and 40% relative humidity. It has a pretty big space that it’s got to
dehumidify. What we do is we install dehu during phase
one to begin the drying process as soon as possible. That way when we do our mold remediation and
all that, the humidity is kept at normal levels. The other thing that you got to remember is
if you go back and you apply a disinfect that’s liquid, that raises the humidity again. Even after all of the soda blasting is done,
the disinfect is applied and the X-70 is applied, we’re having to do another drying process
because all that disinfected and X-70 has gotten the wood wet again and all that. Now the the dehu is working hard to drop that
humidity and that dewpoint back down. Typically that could take a few weeks to happen. Don’t be surprised if immediately after doing
an encapsulation where you have to do mold remediation if the humidity is not pretty
high for a couple of weeks. Okay. We are getting ready to enter the really bad
area that had a lot, a lot of mold in it. But just one thing, the dehu is over there
and the ninja has pointed the dry air towards the back of the crawl space. The wet air always chases the dry air, so
the dehumidifier is able to eventually create equilibrium in most cases. Now, of course, some crawl spaces are so large
that you might need multiple dehumidifiers. But in this case, we’ve got a 90 pint dehumidifier
covering about a 2,500 square foot crawl space. It’s more than adequate. You can see here our humidity back here is
about 47%, which is great. You want to keep your crawl space between
basically 45 and 55% relative humidity. Of course, temperature and all that has to
do with dewpoint and everything. But just from a general standpoint, 45 to
50% are good numbers to have. We’re going to go back here and I don’t know
what… I haven’t seen it, so I’m expecting that the
wood might be tore up from the soda blasting. I mean, let’s just go take a look and see
what we see. Here it is, right? Think about it this way. If we were not a company that did soda blasting,
how in the world would we have been able to clean the mold off of this wood? I mean, do you think you can scrub down to
that? That fungus, that wood destroying fungus,
was so, so bad, it actually destroyed the woods, which is why it’s called wood destroying
fungus, right? This stuff is just vicious on wood. You can still see… This one’s not as bad, but we’re probably
going to have to do some sistering of joist back in here and maybe do some leveling out
of the floor and different things, but we wanted to get everything… The mold removed and all of the wood dry before
we assess that. Because a lot of companies out there, they
would have came in here and if you had a bowing floor or some kind of structural problem or
sagging floor joist or something, some companies or people would have just stuck a post jack
up here and left it. Well, as wet as the wood was, as soon as that
wood dried out, that post jack may have fallen over. Because in the winter when that wood dries
out, the wood shrinks and the post jack loses its effectiveness. But if you control the environment, if you’ll
control the humidity and all that inside the crawl space, when you install that post jack,
it’ll be permanent because you don’t have to worry about the wood getting wetter and
growing or shrinking because it dried out. This is a lot of damage that we were able
to get all that mold off. Now we can see the wood for what it is, and
now we can address the floor or the structural issues that might be in this crawl space. It’s still very, very fragile. I don’t even want to mess with it. I mean, it’s amazing how destructive wood
rot fungus is. Most people are all about termites, termites,
termites, and they obviously are very destructive, but this is what happens when you let a condensation
problem get out of control. This crawl space didn’t flood. It wasn’t from flooding. This is all, all from humidity, from these
ducts condensating and just creating a massive, massive condensation problem. I don’t know if you remember, maybe they can
throw some images up, but even the wood itself was condensating. There was so much moisture in the wood and
the fiberglass. There was water everywhere. This is water damage, mold, wood rot fungus. This is the destructive power of what can
happen whenever you let your crawl space go without controlling humidity. I appreciate you all coming with me in this
crawl space, and I just want to reiterate the power of soda blasting. Okay? I mean, if you’re hiring a company that’s
going to take care of the mold and they are not physically removing the wood rot fungus
or the mold with soda blasting, there’s a great chance they’re not going to get all
of it. You got to you got to make sure… I mean, hand scrubbing is one of the things
that a lot of companies do, but a lot of times we found that hand scrubbing mold, especially
really thick mold, all it does is just smear it. It doesn’t really remove it. Soda blasting is a great way to visibly remove
and physically remove the mold. Then you apply your disinfectant and protectant,
and now you’ve got a crawl space that’ll stand the test of time. It’s been treated with not only the X-70,
which keeps the mold from coming back, but it also keeps the wood from absorbing moisture. That’s a lot of things that’s over missed
about the X-70 is it actually prevents the wood from absorbing moisture. You got your dehu running, you’ve got your
active ventilation system, you got all your vapor barrier down, you’re well insulated,
all the mold has been addressed, and now you have a worry free crawl space. My name is Michael Church with Crawl Space
Ninja. We hope you make it a happy and blessed day,
and we’ll see you later.

5 thoughts on “Extreme Condensation after Job Completion | Efficacy of Soda Blasting

  1. Perfect example of fixing the problem and not just the symptoms! Symptoms will often reappear if the root cause is not addressed. Well done.

  2. You do excellent work!
    I just had a 12 mil steggo vb and aprilaire installed in NC. I closed the vents, but of course, there is still air movement. HU is mostly @50% and there was never any mold, so I am very lucky, and not considering any further work at this time. [ The contractor initially cheated me by installing 10mil plastic over 40% of the area. They just came out and did the entire job over, after I withheld final payment. So I have a 20 mil vb now! I spent a good deal of time under there, and watched him cover every square foot of that space over a 9 hour period! And no… he didn't leave any tape behind!]

  3. Michael you explained to me that the plastic fastener did in fact get shot through the block/brick wall to attach the foam board. One last related question. Is there a need to pre drill a hole for each fastener or does the sheer force of the fastener being shot out of the Hilti gun penetrate the block/brick wall alone. That is so. hard to believe a plastic fastener can put a hole in the block/brick. Thank you sir. I have learned SO much about my crawl space and attic from you. I cannot thank you enough.

  4. Michael one last question about affixing the foam board with plastic fastener. Are pre drill holes required or does the Hilti gun power the plastic fastener at such a force it penetrates the block/brick without a pre drilled hole? That is so hard to believe. Thank you sir so much.

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