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
4answers
892 views

Rim Joist Insulation without a Sill Plate

I've seen a few similar questions but the answers don't add up... I would like to use some rigid foam insulation to insulate my rim joists. Here is the problem: everything I have seen shows putting ...
0
votes
1answer
27 views

Exchanging air in basement

Live in nepa, have goodman 4 ton heat pump w/propane back up. Foam insulated about 1200 square feet that I want to heat. I am at the end and ready to put up the dividing wall.I have 2 returns and 3 ...
0
votes
0answers
12 views

Sealing off open dirt areas in basement and crawlspaces

The vast majority of the basement of our 100 year old home is concrete, however there are three areas that are dirt on the bottom: The rear crawlspace, which is maybe 3ft high, 6ft deep, and the ...
0
votes
1answer
32 views

Drywall over 2x2 Studs in Basement

I have a basement that is a complete product of the 70's. Faux ugly wood paneling, brass ugly sconces, old school metal work boxes, and a beautiful white drop ceiling. I know I could just drywall over ...
1
vote
0answers
22 views

is cork underlayment on a concrete basement floor a workable proposition?

Next up in my basement finish process are the floors. We've decided to go with vinyl for the bathroom (and under-stairs closet), and carpet everywhere else. I'm planning on putting in a 6mil plastic ...
2
votes
2answers
95 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
0answers
19 views

Finished basement with just painted concrete walls

I have a house from 1955, where the basement has been finished with lighting, carpet, interior walls, etc. I don't know when it was finished, only that it was so when I moved in. The strange thing ...
1
vote
2answers
411 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 ...
2
votes
2answers
96 views

What is the best and least expensive way to update my walkout basement?

I have a walkout basement that is paneled and has a dropped ceiling with out a ceiling grid. In need of serious updating, but I have already put so much money into this house, I am looking for the ...
0
votes
1answer
46 views

Can I use 12/2 NM-B wire for basement outlets?

Can I use 12/2 NM-B wire for basement outlets? Also can I use 15 AMP outlets and switches with 12/2 NM-B wire?
7
votes
4answers
9k views

How do I install cabinets on a floating hardwood floor?

We just purchased a bunch of cabinets for installation of a bar / kitchenette in the basement. There are 4 wall cabinets and four base cabinets. These are going to be installed on the existing ...
1
vote
1answer
26 views

How can I make a new basement window fit the opening?

I bought a basement window similar to this one. The plastic face of the window is the exact size of my opening, which is not perfectly square. How can I shave off some of the plastic to make this ...
1
vote
1answer
216 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) ...
1
vote
0answers
59 views

basement bathtub straddling a crater

we got this house recently. i was working on paint and finishing our basement bathroom.. trying to remove the baseboard trim surrounding the the bathroom shower, i noticed that it came out ...
6
votes
4answers
918 views

What is the purpose of horizontal blocks on a bearing wall?

In my basement, the bearing wall has horizontal blocks between each stud, similar to what you see in this picture: . There is one place on the wall where one of the blocks was removed to place an ...
0
votes
1answer
35 views

Basement waterproofing with thermal break

I need help figuring out best solution to fix my basement moisture/mold issue... As far as I can tell, water is entering at bottom seam of poured concrete wall and basement floor. I considered ...
3
votes
5answers
86 views

What are the options for moisture-proofing foundation from the interior

I'm trying to prevent moisture from turning into mold and growing on concrete exterior walls and getting into the fiberglass insulation. I see polystyrene, foil, chemical-based concrete sealing, and ...
2
votes
2answers
208 views

Please reassure me about basement french drains

I understand the principles and practice of putting in a basement perimeter drain... but I've got a slightly irrational paranoia about the concept of cutting the basement floor free that way. ...
0
votes
1answer
62 views

Add a new doorbell to basement, upgraded transformer, still doesn't work

I recently finished my basement and ran a wire in the wall (where I wanted my new door bell to my current doorbell transformer. I've been unsuccessful in getting both my upstairs and downstairs ...
0
votes
2answers
117 views

how to attach framing to this window in concrete?

I'm looking to finish my basement. I have several windows embedded in the concrete as shown in the picture below. I was planning to put framing up in front of the concrete and run some plywood all ...
2
votes
2answers
57 views

How big of a beam for a load bearing wall

I have a wall in my basement that is load bearing. Right now, they put a door opening in there (and probably overdid the header for it). I would like to remove a 7 foot section and open it up for a ...
2
votes
1answer
44 views

Can I tap into the kitchen / dishwasher drain pipe with my washing machine?

I am moving my washing machine as a part of finishing my basement. Can I tap into a kitchen drain pipe (draining my sink and dishwasher) for my washing machine drain? How would this be done? I ...
1
vote
1answer
71 views

Causes of condensation in basement wall

First time home owner of 1 year old house in Southern Ontario. South facing basement wall (50% above grade) has condensation forming between polyethylene barrier and pink batt insulation. What ...
0
votes
0answers
15 views

Ideal Sill Plate width for new construction on 8" block

I've got an addition with a new 8" cinder block wall. I'm curious if it's better to have a 2x8 or 2x6 sill plate? It will be waterproofed on the outside and covered with 2" foam so there shouldn't ...
1
vote
1answer
60 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 ...
1
vote
2answers
181 views

How could one insulate sill plate from the outside?

My house has a gap between the Basement wall and Sill Plate (location best shown in this picture). While there are several question and answers here, I have not found any that deals with a fix from ...
2
votes
2answers
224 views

Preventing Clogging/Flooding at bottom of exterior basement steps

I just purchased a house this weekend, and moved in yesterday. I live in MD (USA), and there just happened to be a torrential downpour yesterday after we moved in. I went downstairs to check my sump ...
3
votes
2answers
355 views

Can I cut a hole in the brick to install a through the wall air conditioner in a basement?

I am looking to install a through the wall air conditioner in the basement. I don't want to block the one window. There is already a window in the brick. I don't know if there is any kind of ...
1
vote
1answer
85 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
40 views

How can I refinish a basement concrete floor?

The basement concrete floor pictured has traces of red paint, a beige mesh, the concrete itself, and a top blue-gray layer of paint. Does refinishing the floor require reapplying the red and the ...
0
votes
1answer
206 views

How to run duct work for basement dehumidifier?

Our basement is partially finished, approximately 50/50 in terms of square footage. It was used as a mother-in-law suite at some point by a previous owner. The finished rooms are air ...
0
votes
1answer
52 views

Water in window well flooding basement

The windows in my basement are close to 12 inches tall, not going below ground level. There is a shallow window well made from old 2x4s framing a depression adjacent to the window. We have been ...
1
vote
1answer
35 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
0answers
50 views

Can I make my bulkhead stairs steeper and still be up to code?

The bottom few steps of my bulkhead stairs go beyond the wall of the basement. The problem is I would like to put a door in my basement at the bottom of the stairs. To do this I would either have to ...
1
vote
0answers
29 views

How do I finish a concrete floorÉ

My basement has a concrete floor that is all jagged. It`s missing about 1 1/2 inches of concrete to be even with everything else....what do I do?? Will self-leveling cement adhere to such a ...
0
votes
1answer
93 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
vote
2answers
32 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 ...
1
vote
3answers
54 views

Tile basement bathroom over cracks without Ditra

I am tiling a basement bathroom that is 5 feet by 6 feet. It has a crack running the entire length of the bathroom as well as a small hairline crack near the toilet. I've read that Ditra is the best ...
1
vote
3answers
87 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....
0
votes
2answers
57 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
2answers
238 views

What is the pros and cons of covering a basement ceiling with Drywalll vs. Panel board?

I'm renovating an unheated basement into a shop in a 1900's wood frame house. The plaster has long since come down and I'm looking to cover the joists. The goal is to insulate a bit (the floor ...
1
vote
1answer
81 views

What are the considerations for crawlspace encapsulation barriers / humidity control?

I live in a house that's half slab, half crawlspace. The crawl is half basement. Typical crawlspace/basement humidity readings are: 80% RH @ 67°F 85% RH @ 68°F 78% RH @ 67°F Where in the ...
1
vote
0answers
28 views

How many sump pits should I have?

I have an older french drain system and after experiencing some foundation problems (horizontal crack), I've been told that my system should be updated to a more modern one which has weeping holes in ...
2
votes
2answers
67 views

Do I need an HVAC vent in this bathroom?

The finished portion of my basement was completed after the original construction. I've found a few questionable practices, including the lack of an HVAC vent in the basement bathroom (shown in green ...
1
vote
1answer
54 views

Why is there a supply vent in my unfinished basement?

Background I have an unfinished basement. It has cement floors with stone walls. The furnace is located in the basement. There is a supply vent blowing conditioned air into my basement. As far as I ...
1
vote
1answer
36 views

Is it likely that water can enter below the slab?

My question is about basement/foundation function and the relationship to sump pumps and water. If a sump pump is supposed to pump water from below the slab out to the surface and loses power, what ...
0
votes
0answers
24 views

Damp carpet and pad in two areas of basement

We have lived in our home for 43 years. The basement has always been dry. The house has drain tile and a sump pump and the sump has only run three times in all this time--only after very heavy rain. ...
0
votes
2answers
63 views

Help with basement wall insulation

Here is the issue, my basement wall facing south is trapping moisture. Removed the drywall and found a layer of poly and rigid insulation on the lower wall and batting insulation on the top side. The ...
20
votes
6answers
234k views

What humidity should I set my dehumidifier to?

I just bought a 50 pint dehumidifier for my basement. What humidity level should I aim for? This time of year the outside humidity is very high (over 80%) and we do not have central air. Right now ...
1
vote
1answer
46 views

New Construction Home - Basement

My family is building a new home and the weather hasn't been cooperating. We have two big concerns that we have brought to the builder. We are looking for some advice regarding these concerns. ...