Question About Insulation in Basement

Hi --
I recently signed a contract to finish my basement. I was always assuming that, putting insulation is a standard procedure. I was talking to my contractor yesterday and he is saying that there is no need to put insulation in the basement. He said that is the way he finishes lot of basements. He is tring to convince me that the basement is already warm and there is no need to put insulation. I just want to check with you guys, what is the best way to finish the basement. If i have to put insulation, what type of insulation is better for basements.
Any ideas would be greatly helpful. I live in Cleveland, OH area.
Thanks Anil
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anil chada wrote:

Basement will be **much** more comfortable if walls are insulated in localities with cold winters.
I like the foam board insulation because it does not pose moisture problems. Must be covered with drywall for fire resistance. As little as 1" foam will make a decided difference, if you can afford 2", even better.
Whatever you put up, make 100% sure that the basement walls don't have any moisture leakage.
Jim (Cleveland)
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Agreed. We used to live in Cleveland (Rocky River). Our basement was finished without insulation and, while the room generally felt warm due to forced air heat, as you approached the walls it felt cold.
When friends finished their basement, they actually put in 2x4 studs on the walls and a raised floor to accommodate insulation. Their room was toasty!
Wayne
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Along with all the other advice on wall insulation... It is also a good idea to use Green insulation inbetween the floor joists. I'm talking about fire proof and sound proof insulation. Not quite as effective for heat, but does wonders for keeping the sound of noisy furnaces down. Also, it is good if you intend on putting in a surround sound system in your basement rec room. You will be able to enjoy that DTS 5.1 system without vibrating the glasses off the shelves in the upstairs kitchen.
Andre.
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A lot depends on where you live, the construction and how comfortable you are expecting it to be.
After about four foot from the ground surface, there is not much reason to add insulation.
It would appear your contractor is taking the cheap way out.
If you signed a contract that did not specify what you want, you may be stuck. You may be able to talk him into an upgrade (at your expense). You may want to investigate local building codes and see if that is covered. You may want to see what licensing and permits are required to see if he is abiding by them.
Did you get any references for this contractor or check any he provided?
--
Joseph E. Meehan

26 + 6 = 1 It's Irish Math
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Call the Owens-Corning insulation help line at 1-800-get-pink. They will tell you that insulation is WELL worth the expense in this case. Perhaps the question is whether insulation is required by code in a basement. If your state doesn't require insulation on below-grade walls, they will soon. Call your building inspector to ask. -B

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decisions for you. Especially a contractor that is looking for the easy way out. (My opinion) Without a doubt, I would insulate as much as is possible, including the ceiling. Insulations serves two purposes. Heat and cold retention, and sound deadening. Check your contractors references. (should have been done before you signed) Ask him for names of previous clients. Foam insulation with foil on both sides can be put against the walls, as long as you have no moisture issues or cracking foundation. If your contractors is putting up studs against the wall, why not put some insulation in, then a vapor barrier, then drywall. Check the local codes, some required all that I mentioned. And I have been in Cleveland, it gets COLD there. Fiberglass rolled with either a kraft face or foil face in the ceilings between the joists. The money you spend now will be made up in savings from heating costs in the not to distant future, especially with the cost of any heating source. (gas, oil, electric, etc.)
Stick to your guns, unfortunately your contractor will want more money, but in reality insulation is pretty easy to do yourself. Check with a home center somewhere and ask if they are having any demonstrations about doing insulation.
Dave
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Hi, Below ground level, you may not need insuslation. Just partial from ceiling down to about 4 ft or so. But why bother? I put in R12 batts on all 4 walls and plugged every open space facing outside wall B4 putting up studs and drywall boards. Also furnace air ducts(hot and cold return) were installed as well. Tony
David Babcock wrote:

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My parents had a home in Iowa that was not insulated. The fireplace when burning kept it warm. The forced air heat would barely keep the rooms warm, only about 800 square feet. The concrete walls were finished in a faux brick finish, which the parents painted like real brick, looked good when they were done. If your walls are plain concrete I would insulate. Warmer in winter, cooler in summer. Parents had to run a dehumidifier all of the time to keep the moisture down, just an fyi
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On 13 Dec 2003 06:18:54 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (anil chada) wrote:

I'm in Calgary, Canada; I do two or three basements a month. Code here is moisture barrier or dampproofing extending up the concrete walls from the floor from the floor to ground level (or four feet whichever is less). Then R12 insulation below ground level and R20 above ground level. Then a full vapour barrier. Then drywall.
I can't imagine Cleveland not having code for basement development, and I'd be surprised if it was much different than what it is here.
I would check with the planning/building department to see what municipal code says. Most code is there for a reason.
Another inexpensive way to improve heating, (assuming you have forced air registers at ceiling level in the basement, is to drop the cold air return to floor level. Improves ciculaiton.
I can't comment on your contractor or your relationship.
Ken
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I am in process of big basement remodeling. I have built 2" X 4" frame 1" out of basement masonry walls. I installed Kraft-faced R-13 (in my area, Central NJ, code requires at least R-11) insulation stapled to studs. It has built-in vapor barrier. As already mentioned you must install some sort of fire stop to prevent possible fire spreading to floor joist. The easiest way is to use thermofiber which is a fire resistant insulation and has a green color. You stuff thermofiber around and between studs nears the first floor joists. Another possible fire stop is 1/2" sheetrock nailed to upper horizontal stud.

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