Most homeowners know that purchasing and installing hardwood flooring can cost a pretty penny. And if you’re lucky, you may find some nice hardwood under the carpets of your home to refinish.
I was recently asked by a friend to look at their damaged hardwood flooring. Unfortunately, due to having a vented crawl space their floors they were cupping quite badly. Cupping occurs when the sides of hardwood flooring are higher than the center of the board giving it a concave shape.
There are many reasons why floors cup. It may be from moisture damage due to the air inside the home being too humid. But in this cause it was due to the vented crawlspace under the floors. It was allowing very wet air to move from the crawlspace up through the floors into the home. This is called “Stack Effect”.
To prevent this from happening it is recommended to keep your crawlspace below 60% relative humidity by encapsulating it. The first step is to seal all penetrations from the crawlspace to the home and from the outside into the crawlspace in order to prevent humid air from infiltrating into these areas. Then a high-quality vapor barrier is laid on the floor and sealed to the walls of the crawl space. Once that has been done a dual-exhaust Santa Fe dehumidifier is installed to ensure humidity is controlled at all times.