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Old 03-07-2011, 10:58 AM   #1
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Concrete Basement Floor Insulating options


I'm in the process of finishing my basement, I've put a few previous posts on here about the project and gotten good feedback. My new issue is in the basement again, and I am trying to get this one done by next winter. The 'finished' portion of the basement is roughly 22'x17', the exterior walls are insulated with r-19 and I am planning on putting some HVAC in the room, however my current flooring is just painted concrete. The floor is bitterly cold, and since the wife and I got the basement sealed and waterproofed, I figure it would be a safe bet to go a carpet route down there. The concrete floor make the room very 'live' noise wise, and with a newborn on the way in a few weeks, the carpet would add plenty of sound deadening as well as overall comfort to the space.

My question is that I want to insulate the floor, I cannot afford an infloor heating system, if I could I would go that route and be done with it. I remember seeing an episode of Holmes on Homes where he used the Rigid Foam Board Insulation on an entire room, walls, floor ceiling, and then carpeted the space. I was wondering the rigid foam under the carpeting would be a good choice or if there is a better option.

The carpet choice is going to be the re-stretched, pad attached kind from Menards. My plan was to cover the floor with the Rigid foam, tape the seams, caulk the boards where they meet the walls, then tape and lay the carpet to the floor.

Does this sound feasible or just dumb?

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Old 03-07-2011, 11:29 AM   #2
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Concrete Basement Floor Insulating options


Yes it is workable and would make the floor feel less cool, plus deaden the noise a little. However, I would go to a Home Depot or similar store and just talk honestly about what you want to do. Don't be shy about saying you're on a restricted budget, they see this a lot. I suggest this because there are other options such as insulated wood panels that interlock, plus other options. I assume that there is heat from your furnace so that shouldn't be an issue. The infloor heating, to do properly, can be quite costly. One last point, make sure the existing floor is as level and smooth as possible, there are materials for this as well
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Old 03-07-2011, 01:18 PM   #3
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Concrete Basement Floor Insulating options


I wouldn't put much stock in what anyone at Home Depot says... Some of their employees are knowledgeable, but its hit or miss.... The foam board on the floor is fine, but you'll want wood on top of it, then the carpet.
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Old 03-07-2011, 01:33 PM   #4
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Concrete Basement Floor Insulating options


I agree with Homesealed in that Home Depot is not the best, but it can give you basic information. They also carry books that you could look at or buy. You might also phone a flooring store. They will probably try to sell you something, but they can also advise you on what prep work should be done.
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Old 03-08-2011, 10:43 AM   #5
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Concrete Basement Floor Insulating options


So the job would go something like, foam board on concrete, seams taped with underlayment tape, TnG plywood floating over top, carpet taped to the plywood. Any ideas on the thickness of the ply?
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Old 03-08-2011, 11:08 AM   #6
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Concrete Basement Floor Insulating options


1/4" underlay should do. It is to create a smooth and solid surface. This is assuming the floor underneath is level. Start from the bottom up. If the floor (cement) isn't level, then the finished floor won't be. But you've got the right idea.
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Old 03-08-2011, 11:39 AM   #7
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Concrete Basement Floor Insulating options


TnG plywood should be min 5/8" or 3/4". You will want to screw it into the floor with tapcons but you saw this on HOH. I also agree that HD will not provide you with "knowledgeable" people. It really is hit or miss. Your stackup would be 1" foam, 5/8" plywood, carpet padding, carpet. While many people may like/ not like HOH for whatever reasons, realize (IMO) that he is ahead of the curve on a lot of topics. You may go to the store and say I want to do this by putting XPS on a basement floor, but you may just get a lot of blank stares and nod with you. Very seldom do you run into somebody at HD that really knows their stuff.

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Old 03-08-2011, 05:24 PM   #8
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Concrete Basement Floor Insulating options


algore is correct... 1/4" would be a disaster.

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