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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3
votes
2answers
854 views

What is the minimum thickness of foam board when insulating a basement

What is the minimum thickness of the foamboard insulation that can be used when insulating a concrete basement wall when it comes to moisture control and temperature control? Obviously thicker is ...
3
votes
2answers
240 views

What type of cleaner should I use to remove a puke stain from concrete?

My cat puked on the basement floor in a couple places, but I can't seem to clean the stain. So far I've tried simply mopping with Pine-Sol®, which didn't work. Then I tried scrubbing/mopping with ...
3
votes
4answers
126 views

Should I use spray foam to insulate a basement?

Home in CT cape w/ uninsulated basement. Its a cold, not drafty house, with new Marvin integrity windows. The basement is very cold, and it seems like the cold basement is making the rest of the house ...
1
vote
1answer
251 views

How to build a wall under duct work

So I'm trying to finish my basement. I have a conundrum as to how to build a wall under a soffit. Here's my situation - I have an HVAC duct that is running really close to the wall - like maybe 1.5" ...
2
votes
2answers
133 views

Do I need to insulate the entire basement or just a few walls?

I have a 1920s house with concrete foundation that had a semi-finished basement. After a recent 3-day rain storm, my basement flooded (about 1") due to hydrostatic pressure. It wasn't just my house -- ...
3
votes
3answers
253 views

How do I drywall a corner with a lally column?

I'm finishing my basement and I've come across this lally column which is supporting a steel beam. I want to frame an external corner for this interior wall at this "corner" but the distance from ...
1
vote
2answers
903 views

Installing permanent support column in the basement

I'm redoing a basement after flooding and just found this little hack. Apparently previous owner removed permanent support post for some reason and then at some point installed this temporary jack ...
1
vote
0answers
38 views

How do you insulate with XPS around interior basement windows?

I'm using 2" XPS to insulate my interior basement walls. How do I work around windows? Do I cut it flush with the concrete opening? Do I spray expanding foam to seal the XPS against the concrete ...
3
votes
3answers
316 views

Re-framing basement walls after flooding. Drain tile with no concrete?

Im getting ready to re-frame basement walls after basement flood (shocking images attached). I'll be doing this for every wall portion that can possibly flood: 1) ridgid XPS foam insulation ...
0
votes
0answers
27 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
691 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 ...
1
vote
3answers
84 views

New Basement Floor, house not framed yet

We are building a new house with an exposed basement. I had the floors poured a week ago while still warm in December. We have not framed the house up yet, meaning no deck, walls, roof, or HEAT. My ...
3
votes
3answers
140 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 ...
2
votes
3answers
115 views

How much drywall should I remove around a moldy area?

The previous owner told me that during the last winter when snow melted, water got in the basement through the drywall and he had to wipe dry the floor. Last year we had one of the worst winters on ...
1
vote
2answers
59 views

Painted sample areas have different sheen than the rest of the wall

I recently finished my basement. Had the drywall textured. Painted three sample areas of different paint colors I was trying to decide on. I decided on one and got the paint from a different paint ...
0
votes
2answers
59 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
52 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
votes
2answers
109 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?
0
votes
2answers
72 views

do i need a vent for my new home basement plumbing rough-ins

I have a new home with rough-in plumbing in basement and I was wondering if I need a vent down there. I do plan on putting in bathroom
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?
1
vote
2answers
536 views

How to install hydronic radiant heat over concrete slab

I'm trying to figure out the most ideal way to install hydronic radiant heat in my basement over the existing concrete slab. I've looked at several products for heat distribution, like Warmboard, ...
1
vote
2answers
112 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 ...
2
votes
1answer
172 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 ...
2
votes
6answers
338 views

How do I remove or cut a sewer pipe at edge of our basement slab?

What's the best way to remove the unused sewer / storm-drain pipe in the attached picture? It's coming up through the edge of our basement slab where it meets the foundation wall? We want to remove ...
1
vote
1answer
129 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 ...
1
vote
2answers
264 views

Old basement crumbling basement walls and asbestos

I want to refinish my basement walls, as they look really bad. I tore down some wood paneling that was starting to warp, and behind that was some styrofoam insulation. Behind styrofoam is 3 mil ...
7
votes
4answers
943 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
36 views

Vapour barrier for basement garage ceiling

To make the floor of a bedroom above a garage warmer it is desireable to insulate the garage ceiling. Does a vapour barrier go up in the joists against the floor above since the house would be ...
0
votes
3answers
285 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 ...
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
70 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
61 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
79 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 area....
0
votes
5answers
163 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. ...
5
votes
4answers
425 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 ...
0
votes
0answers
57 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 ...
1
vote
2answers
30 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 ...
1
vote
0answers
33 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
97 views

basement subfloor - do i need sleepers for this solution

I'm going to install a basement subfloor. I want to follow option 3 from this site: http://homerenovations.about.com/od/additions/a/BasementSubfloor.htm. A nice option because the foam insulation ...
6
votes
1answer
446 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 ...
3
votes
2answers
877 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
329 views

What's the right way to insulate and frame around this pipe?

I have been studying the latest engineering on how to insulate and frame basements after tearing out a partially finished basement that had wood and insulation in direct contact with the concrete. ...
0
votes
0answers
165 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 ...
1
vote
0answers
73 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
49 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 ...
0
votes
0answers
53 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 ...
1
vote
2answers
239 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 ...
0
votes
2answers
75 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
106 views

Replacing basement door and walls with a hatch

I'm trying to remove the structure that leads to the basement. (see sketch 1). Once removed, there will be an empty space like (see sketch 2) My aim is to build over it, a simple door (see sketch ...
0
votes
1answer
167 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 ...