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DanWolo 06-20-2011 08:28 PM

Basement Insulation in Ma
 
I own a house that was built in 1913 with a poured concrete foundation. My house sits on a hill of fairly clean free-draining sands. I have yet to see any water in the basement. The previous owner had finished the basement with no insulation. I have since gutted the entire basement in order to re-do poor electrical (live wires cut and left in walls), plumbing (thin walled copper used throughout, bathtub had 3 traps to get around supply lines, and others), structural (removed walls without properly picking up the loads, completely cutting through joists for plumbing vents, ect), and duct work by the previous owner. So, getting back to my question, I keep getting different answers regarding vapor barriers. My plan is to frame the exterior and hold it off the foundation wall 2-inches, use treated wood for a base plate and then using closed cell spray foam which in my mind will act as a vapor barrier and be mold resistant. I have spay foamed the rest of the house and need some more, so I was goin to order it anyways. The house is located in Southeastern Massachusetts. Thank you for any advice you have.

ccarlisle 06-23-2011 08:39 AM

We're both in what is called 'heating zones', where more input is needed to save on heating costs than the reverse (ie. in "cooling zones"), so the question of vapour barriers is critical. There is some controversy over vapour barriers in basements that's why we tend to go with XPS (extruded poystyrene) boards, 2'x8' in size, stuck directly to the concrete foundation...with a stud wall inside that. Same for the floor...spray foam the gaps and seal the joints.

The objective is to stop air movement and create a thermal break; basements are not like the rest of the house, so a new thinking is needed. With a rigid foam board thermal break done right, no need for plastic vapour barriers...:no:

DanWolo 06-26-2011 11:42 PM

I talked to my town's building department and they said my plan for insulating will work and that they will approve it.

ccarlisle 06-27-2011 07:27 AM

Remember to insulate the rim joist areas and use rolls of foam sill gasket underneath any PT lumber that sits directly on concrete...


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