For questions generally relating to habitable spaces in a home below ground level, and to foundation types that include a space of this type.

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1
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2answers
211 views

Foundation drainage: try interior first and then exterior?

My wife and I are closing on a home. During the initial walkthroughs of the basement, it was clear that there was a moisture problem there, but I don't think it was clear to either of us how severe ...
0
votes
0answers
24 views

Water infiltration between basement “bulkhead door” enclosure and concrete foundation?

I've got a fairly common below-grade basement door setup; a doorway thru the poured basement wall into a space enclosed with cemented cinder blocks and a roughly poured floor, containing wooden stairs ...
5
votes
2answers
583 views

Support Beam Splitting

I bought an older house (1917) that had renovations done in 2009. I was in the basement earlier today with the oil delivery man and I noticed some of the support beams splitting. The inspector never ...
3
votes
3answers
137 views

Semi-finished basement, water-resistant “baseboards”?

I'm planning on applying foam-panel insulation over my basement's concrete wall. I'm told a fire barrier is required over that, either plasterboard or decently-thick plywood. I've been considering ...
1
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2answers
87 views

Handling basement water infiltration behind bulkhead

My house has two different kinds of foundation, The older part is brick-over-fieldstone. The newer part, dug a bit deeper, is poured concrete. When that extension was added, they added a cinder-block ...
3
votes
7answers
47k views

Can a wet vac be effectively used as a pump?

Can a wet vac effectively be used as a pump to move water? I figure if a basement floods, that this can serve as double duty.
0
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2answers
52 views

Railing placement and removable railing systems

I need a removable railing on my bottom basement steps. There is currently no railing but in order to move furniture or anything large downstairs I'm gonna need a removable railing. It doesn't need ...
0
votes
0answers
47 views

Hole betwee the basement sill box and concrete porch

I recently bought an old house that seems to have been flipped in the past, so many things weren't repaired properly. Had a door replaced with a window, and that opened up holes between where the ...
0
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3answers
202 views

replace load bearing post with steel column

So I have a joist that stops short of a stairwell and doesn’t connect to the foundation and I’m going to move the supporting beam back 2 feet (it’s about an 8 ft run between the header and other ...
0
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2answers
102 views

How to build a toilet under the sewer level?

I have an old garage that I am recovering. Among other fixes I want to build a toilet. The issue here is that it's under the sewer level. Is it still possible to build it? What do I need?
4
votes
1answer
154 views

Could these foundation defects cause problems?

Attached are the pictures of newly constructed basement wall. I wonder if these defects are going to be a problem in the future? Outside of the walls have water proofing, but I wonder if these defects ...
1
vote
2answers
28 views

Installing Basement Subfloor over 30-year-old Vinyl

I'm going to install a basement subfloor. I have 2 rooms that had vinyl squares glued down - a bathroom and laundry room. Can I lay down rigid XPS insulation and plywood directly over the vinyl and ...
0
votes
1answer
127 views

How can I remove a non-load bearing wall in my basement?

I have two small rooms in basement. I want to remove the common wall between the two and covert the resulting big room into a home theater. What is the best way to remove the studs, wiring, etc.?
1
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3answers
114 views

Finishing basement… level floors with SLC or install stud wall first?

Basement floor isn't too far off... wondering if I should get the stud wall done first or level the floor first....
13
votes
3answers
4k views

Why did they hammer nails in half way and bent them over to secure supports?

In my 1950s house they hammered nails in half way and bent them over to secure the supports to the beam. Why was this technique used?
2
votes
1answer
111 views

How to attach short bottom plate for door frame to concrete floor?

I'm framing out my basement, which I've done once before in an old house. I use the treated wood (green board?) for the bottom plate, raise up the frames, get everything level, and use cut nails to ...
7
votes
4answers
583 views

Do I have to periodically pour water down my basement floor drain to maintain the p-trap water seal?

There is a sewer smell coming from my basement. There are only a couple entries to the sewer in the basement: A laundry sink that acts as the drain for a water softener (which regenerates every few ...
1
vote
1answer
100 views

Vapor barrier problems

Update: added some additional details below based on comments. I have a basement bathroom that I am currently working on. I've framed and installed rough plumbing. I have some vapor barrier problems ...
2
votes
1answer
297 views

Can rigid foam board have an air space between it and rim joist?

I am insulating my rim joists with 2" rigid foam board. Most of the rim joist is bare, and the foam fits along it nicely. Some sill boxes have some small irregularities (vent pipes, plumbing, etc) ...
5
votes
4answers
161 views

Prevent dead animals in basement window wells

How can I prevent animals from dying in my basement window wells? The wells are about two feet deep and have a clear plastic covers over them. The covers don't fit tightly and critters seem to ...
1
vote
1answer
45 views

Efflorescence Cause

I believe I have some efflorescence in my basement. It is growing in two spots where the floor paint was scratched off when the previous owners moved out. It brushes away easily, and I have never ...
12
votes
4answers
9k views

Does XPS+OSB subfloor need to be anchored?

Mike Holmes is a big fan of OSB/plywood over 1" XPS for basement floors, though his book leaves something to be desired in terms of details. His book says: ...on top of the foam, you want to have ...
1
vote
3answers
447 views

Mystery pipes in basement - where do they go?

Newbie to the forum here. Will upload photos this evening, but thought I'd start with the question/context: Just bought a fixer upper farmhouse in Portland, OR area. House is at least 1930s, could be ...
10
votes
3answers
1k views

Would you expect a plumber to put up plastic to contain dust for a basement bathroom rough-in?

I've read through other posts on basement bathroom rough-ins, but haven't found anything. Yesterday, a reputable plumber used a jack hammer to break up concrete in a basement bathroom being added to ...
1
vote
1answer
61 views

Would tiling a basement floor provide any effective moisture barrier?

I'm about to undertake another basement remodel. With our first, we simply stained the concrete floor. We really liked the look of it. However, it still would bring in moisture at times. This time, ...
0
votes
1answer
59 views

Method to fasten pink board to interior foundation wall

So I'll be finishing my basement soon and will be using 1.5" pinkboard attached to my interior foundation walls. What is the best method to fasten this to the wall (construction adhesive, caulk)? ...
0
votes
2answers
58 views

Waterproofing weeping tile inside vs outside

I just bought a new house. The basement is mostly concrete slabs, except for under the porch steps: there is a single row of cinder blocks. It's leaking water from a corner (at eye level) in that ...
0
votes
5answers
131 views

how to build a basement under house

I want to build a basement room under existing concrete deck how do I support deck while digging out beneath? It drops off vertically would dig from that side. soft dirt. How to do this safely. ...
0
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0answers
41 views

Dehumidifier - proper drain technique/setup?

I have a dehumidifier in my crawlspace draining into the kitchen drain pipe. The hose recently became plugged, and I think it was due to gunk growing and filling the hose from the kitchen drain. Is ...
2
votes
2answers
150 views

Help diagnosing source of basement moisture

Hoping your experience can help figure out where moisture is coming from in my basement. I tried to include a lot of details to help identify issue. I have a house built in 2008 with finished ...
0
votes
1answer
122 views

Keeping water out of basement?

So I'm a recent home owner (2 months now). I live in Massachusetts and given the storm that just rolled through, I found water in my basement. Not a scary amount. I was able to mop most of it up. I ...
1
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0answers
28 views

Temporary Remove Flex Duct

I am about to replace a load bearing wall in unfinished basement. There is flexible duct attached to plenum that I need to temporarily move out in order to put the beams in. Do i just need to cut ...
6
votes
1answer
197 views

Should window well for basement window be attached to the house?

When answering this question, code references are great (IIRC) if there are any applicable, but I am asking specific to northern midwestern climates in the United States (up near Canada) and best ...
2
votes
3answers
3k views

Should I be concerned with my back flow valve pit filling with water?

I have never had foundation or ground water problems in my basement but I did have a sewar problem and as part of a recent replacment of that, I had a back flow valve installed that looks like this: ...
3
votes
2answers
546 views

How far does a basement egress window well need to stick out above ground?

Is there code on this? I am having an egress window well installed today and was surprised to see the window well sticking out 2 feet above ground (1 foot if you count all the new dirt they mounded up ...
0
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0answers
142 views

Insulating already finished basement

During a repipe, I recently discovered that my finished basement was never insulated. I live in the PNW (marine climate- zone 4), and the basement is always pretty comfortable- cool in the summer and ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

What equipment could I use for digging out a basement after the house is built?

My mother and father built the home I live in many years ago. It only had a half basement. My father had started on the other side, but passed away before finishing it. I have now taken this job on. I ...
3
votes
3answers
6k views

Sump Pump Vs. Radon mitigation?

I have a full basement in a cold climate (North Dakota). The previous owner had a raw hole broken out of the cement floor that must have served as an emergency sump pump hole. We haven't had water ...
0
votes
0answers
55 views

Cracks in basement and garage floors

I'm I home owner and hope someone can help me because I've read so much conflicting information and don't know who else to turn to. I've called General Contractors who can't seem to fit me into a ...
0
votes
0answers
45 views

Alternative attachment to concrete floor containing pex heat tubes

I am getting ready to finish my basement. The counties "Typical Finished Basement Details" say that bottom plate attachment to floor is with 16D concrete nails face nailed. What are USBC approved ...
19
votes
5answers
20k views

What is the best way to incrementally finish an unfinished basement?

my wife and I are in the process of buying our first house. The house has a 750 square foot unfinished basement (cinderblock walls and concrete floor), and is brand new (rather, it will be brand new ...
1
vote
2answers
182 views

Benefit to running electric wires through walls vs attic/basement? 1-story house

We're planning on getting some updates to the electric wiring in our house. Installing more wall outlets, removing some knob & tube in the attic, installing GFCI outlets in required places, and ...
1
vote
1answer
320 views

Should I remove vinyl flooring to allow the floor underneath to dry out?

We are renovating a 200+ year old house that had a dirt basement. We poured a concrete floor and put vinyl flooring (snap-together, looks sort of like wood) over this. The basement has gotten wet ...
0
votes
2answers
64 views

Do DRIcore panels need to be flat?

I want to install carpet tile over DRIcore on my concrete basement floor. The floor is far from flat; I would guess at least an inch or two of overall variation. Do I need to ensure the floor is ...
1
vote
3answers
65 views

Wet smell, finished basement, aggravates when it rains -how do I find the source?

I have a light wet smell in my basement and I am trying to find the source of it ...not much luck so far. The basement is finished (by the previous owner) and as far as I could see behind the finished ...
0
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0answers
16 views

newly poored basement [duplicate]

went out to check on my new house construction and they took the forms off. Cement by windows look really bad
0
votes
1answer
114 views

Cracks in a newly constrcuted basement wall?

Pic 1 shows the newly constructed basement (Just 4 days) wall and It can clearly seen the crack across the wall (Not sure whether its crack or not but looks like) due to pouring concrete. I wonder ...
4
votes
2answers
119 views

Do I leave this insulation up?

I am researching how to finish one room in my basement, and not sure what to do with what I think is vapor barrier or wall wrap insulation. Its only on two of the four walls which I assume is because ...
0
votes
2answers
83 views

To egress or not egress

In attempting to get a permit to install a basement bathroom, our township building inspector is demanding we install an egress window. She has put a stop work order in the meantime. Naturally, we ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Should I put a moisture barrier under tile on a basement floor?

I bought porcelain tile for my basement.. Should I put Ditra down in order to prevent any moisture? Is there a cheaper way? I had tile put in the other room and there is white powder that comes up ...