With three radically different Basement Insulation methods available, it can be a hard choice deciding which will result in the greatest benefit to the use of and comfort of your home.
Another main key to making your decision is of course your basement insulation budget!.
The three basic basement insulation choices are...
Basement Ceiling Insulation
Less people are opting to install basement ceiling insulation because of the rise in basement remodeling projects that make full use of this space by incorporating it into the home.
Ceiling insulation basically means that you are protecting and closing the envelope of your home by excluding this area and disregarding the option of ever developing the basement.
Ceiling insulation will result in lowering the level of the height of the basement, the height of the space is one of the major factors which determines whether a basement renovation will come up to code and be a viable space which you and your family will enjoy.
Also, regarding your budget, this option may not make much of a saving over interior wall insulation - when you take into account the overall ceiling dimension to be insulated when compared to the total wall space requiring insulation - surprisingly, often the ceiling is a bigger overall space to work on.
Basement Interior Wall Insulation
Normally the preferred option for home improvement and financing projects, insulating the interior in existing buildings is usually lighter on the budget than exterior wall insulation and of more use to the development of your home than ceiling insulation.
However, although this insulation is interior, special attention should first be paid to the form of exterior drainage you have to make sure that all downspouts extend out well away from the foundations and that water can run away from the home.
It's also a great opportunity to re-assess the exterior foundation coating of your home - if you live in an area prone to a lot of rainfall you may decide to upgrade your exterior insulation so that your concrete walls don't absorb moisture from the outside - as well as install interior basement wall insulation.
Problems with dampness will have to be resolved before starting your basement interior wall insulation project and the area air sealed and damp proofed - including the use of vapor diffusion retarders.
Installing interior installation will mean that you lose a certain amount of ground space to insulation materials and wall studs, but the amount is minimal in comparison to the compensation you gain by really being able to use this space AND reducing your energy bills - this is however, an important factor to include in your measurements when insulating as part of a full basement development project.
There are many more different materials available for use in interior basement insulation, however your choice should match or exceed the local building code in your zone, and include a cover rated for fire.
Your local building office is the best resource for finding out not only the preferred material options but also to help you determine the minimum R-value of basement insulation for your home depending on the area where you live.
Basement Exterior Wall Insulation
Installing exterior basement wall insulation is a big messy job that can pay big dividends if done correctly.
In the long term you can save a lot every winter due to a sizable reduction in heat loss escaping through your foundations.
This type of insulation backs up the effectiveness of your damp proof coating in the basement by not only protecting it, but also by reducing the build up of interior wall condensation and by holding exterior moisture back.
Exterior wall insulation has an action which in many ways benefits the whole house whereas interior insulation concentrates on protecting that space.
Exterior insulation actually protects the foundations of your home from the stresses to the materials of expansion and contraction during the changes in season.
If you are going to the expense of installing exterior wall insulation, it makes financial sense in this case to also look and see if you need to update the systems you have for perimeter drainage around your home.
Make sure that your contractor checks to see if there is any signs of radon gas in the soil surrounding your home and also that he uses the best materials that can repel insect infestations that might eat away at your investment.
Are You Ready for Basement Insulation
Although basement insulation is not as popular as attic insulation projects, with more and more homeowners wanting to make more use of the basement as a home office space, following the ever growing trend to work from home - or you may be planning for a basement insulated home theatre, we are becoming more willing to combat the moisture and humidity problems that basements are famous for.
Insulating the interior without assessing the exterior seal of your foundations will probably mean that you will later have damp problems behind the studwork of a developed basement.
Find out the condition of the exterior shell of your basement walls before you start to budget for an interior only project - including small improvement to the envelop of your foundations now will help protect your interior insulation investment.
To really help us make the most of every square inch of our homes and make energy bill saving, homeowners are not opting for the minimum requirements or just 'adequate' insulation, but for the best solution of Basement Insulation that meets the particular needs of our home.
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