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Old 10-28-2009, 11:37 PM   #1
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Insulating basement walls


Does anyone see an issue with using standard kraft faced fiberglass insulation to insulate basement walls??

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Old 10-29-2009, 10:43 AM   #2
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Insulating basement walls


Go to this active thread for a discussion including likely problems.
Insulating a basement

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Old 10-29-2009, 11:50 AM   #3
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Insulating basement walls


I've been researching the exact same situation - how to insulate between a proposed sheet rock wall on wooden studs that are right infront of a cinderblock basement wall. Many folk have clear, strong ideas on what to do but taken together they often contradict each other. The best official comment I found was from the US DOE, which contains pictures & text on tests of various insulation systems. [See http://www.eere.energy.gov/buildings...s/db/35017.pdf. It seems that a 'best' system is to stick extruded polystyrene sheet onto the concrete, or in my case, the cinderblock, and then use either nothing between that & the sheet rock, or use (unfaced) fiberglass between the polystyrene and the back of the sheet rock. I intend to go with the latter system, unless anyone reading this can see an obvious problem with it. [Basically Figure 14 in the above document.] My basement wall has always been bone dry, even before I used DryLok paint on the (below grade) walls, but as the DOE document says, it could have been dry only because it was not covered up. Once you cover it up, the invisible water vapor coming in through it can condense & cause mold & odor within the fiberglass. Note they say use a semi-permeable paint on the inside of room wall such as a latex so that that water vapor can still escape through - otherwise it will linger within the insulation & support mold.
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Old 10-29-2009, 12:42 PM   #4
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Insulating basement walls


I am just concerned with the issue of if the wall studs are directly on the foundation walls then the xps does not really do its job as the moisture can still come through the wood studs. Also even if it is a few inches off the block( or whatever) wall how do get a tight seal with the xps ???
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Old 10-29-2009, 06:48 PM   #5
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Insulating basement walls


The very best way to do the job is with sprayed Urethane foam! The stuff insulates, seals, strengthens, and is a total no-brainer for completing the rest of the wall.

The ONLY way I finish basement walls.

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Old 10-29-2009, 10:38 PM   #6
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Insulating basement walls


Peter, can I just rent equipment to do it?? Do i need a vapor barrier as well??



I am just going to rip out the framing and start over because I want to change the layout anyway. So starting fresh with block walls.....Any other suggestions for best method??
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Old 10-30-2009, 12:08 PM   #7
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Insulating basement walls


You're correct saying the studs will wick moisture. If you are going to tear out the studs then simply glue the polystyrene onto the block & build your new studs against the polystyrene sheet - anchor the studs to a baseplate & to joists at the top. No need to disturb the sealed polystyrene sheet at all.
I would not recommend anyone but a professional to handle spraying polyurethane foam. It is the best way to go but if you have never used it before, then you stand the risk, if you breathe or have skin contact with it, of serious (as in life threatening) alergic reactions from the uncured materials and spray, not to mention exposure to the uncured isocyanate itself is very nasty in its long term effects. Spray cans of the stuff, with excellent ventillation & personal protection, are as much as the DIYer should handle. Whether you in particular, have an allergic reaction is a gamble. It can happen after your second exposure or after your hundredth exposure, or never; it depends on your specific body.
Do you feel lucky?
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Old 10-30-2009, 12:30 PM   #8
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Insulating basement walls


I agree with Pete - but that's also because we're in the same city so have the same weather conditions. Spray foam is the best for our climate but I wouldn't recommend it to you organik...It can be DIY but it's messy and you have to take precautions. And it's expensive.

Once foamed you don't need a vapour barrier because foam does not let air through it. Up here it serves dual duty in being an insulator and a vapour barrier and for us the vapour barrier is as important if not more than the R factor.

I just doubt whether it is worthwhile in Eastern Tennessee...I'd have to know more. There is no one answer for insulation unless your local climate conditions and building system are entered into the equation.

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