View Full Version : Condensation problem

Frank Bombardiere
01-17-2008, 10:17 PM
I have not ever seen anything like this before so I have my theories but would like some opinions. There was heavy condensation on the floor joists under only one section of the house. It was under the kitchen but there were no plumbing leaks. About a 10 sq ft area with condensation and the rest of the floor structure was dry. They had all the crawl space vents closed and there was an open access panel to the crawl space right where all the condensation was located. We had just had some warm weather followed by sharply colder weather just before the inspection which was in the morning around 1130am.

I am thinking that moisture was migrating to the open access panel during to colder night hours as it would have been colder in that area. All the vents were closed up very tightly except for the open access panel near the area with the condensation. Any thoughts?

Stephen Houmard
01-18-2008, 05:00 AM
Waas trhere carpet everywhere in the home except he kitchen?
Are the HVAC vents on the floor or the ceiling?
Hell, I don't know.

Frank Bombardiere
01-18-2008, 06:55 AM
Ceiling registers, Wood floors

David Samloff
01-20-2008, 07:26 PM
Was there a heating system under the wood floors?

Anything to do with irrigation?

wayne soper
01-21-2008, 03:33 AM
Spanish maid with a large bucket of water and a mop. What material was on the kitchen floor.

Carol Perkins
01-21-2008, 12:36 PM
Was there a vapor retarder on the ground in the crawl space?

Frank Bombardiere
01-21-2008, 12:44 PM
Tile floor, No vapor barrier on ground, furnace inside house, ceiling ductwork.
There was insulation on the sub floor in that area, it was wet. Looked like it has gone on for a while as there was some fungus in that area only.

Jon Randolph
01-21-2008, 12:56 PM
No vapor barrier on the ground, but what about the insulation below the sub floor?

If the insulation was installed with the vapor barrier to the crawl side insteas of to the conditioned side of the home, it can and will cause just what you are describing. After absorbing humidity and holding moisture for a while, the insulation usually falls to the crawl floor, but the wood will remain wet for a long time. The longer it remains wet, the more it will mold which retains even more moisture. Before you know it, you can berak chunks off of it with your bare hands.

Pictures would have been nice. I average around 100 pics/inspection. Not all of them go into my report, of course, but they are nice to have. If nothing else, to share with your friends here at InspectionNews.net

BTW, I keep all pictures in case they are needed in the future.

Jerry Peck
01-21-2008, 02:07 PM
BTW, I keep all pictures in case they are needed in the future.


That's good ... *as long as* ... you go over the photo *VERY* carefully and make sure there *IS NOTHING* in them which you missed.

About the worst thing you can do to 'prove your side of an argument' is to bring out a photo showing something which was not on the report ... right then and there *every* other photo you took will be requested so they can have 'their expert' go through the photos to find anything and everything else you missed.

BIG Oops!

Frank Bombardiere
01-21-2008, 08:33 PM
The vapor barier of the insulation was properly installed. I did not have any photos that would really tell you much so I didn't bother with them. I may go back out and look at it some more if I can to try and figure it out.

Jim Luttrall
01-21-2008, 08:46 PM
Frank, it sounds like just a weather change phenomenon.
Rapid weather change that you mentioned coupled with the difference in venting in the area.
I would imagine your weather is similar to my area and rapid changes in the weather can do some strange things if you are there to see it when it happens.
My main concern, as I understand the situation you describe, would be any long term moisture problem as exhibited by damage to wood or insulation.
If it is just a transient problem, as I suspect, I will bet you could not duplicate the situation if you try.