Finishing a basement

gemini7711April 20, 2009

We are repairing a crack on our basement wall with a polyurethane injection. After the crack is repaired and we want to finish our basement, what would be suggested in treating the walls? Should I just start drywalling? What about the floor? Should I install a subfloor? I take it I should stay away from sealers/waterproofers/epoxies on the concrete? (Pressure issues?) I've also heard of people putting up a membrane (kind of like a tub surround) on the wall, then drywalling?

What's recommended? What has anyone had success with?

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Here's some homework from experts with no axes to grind.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2009 at 5:43PM
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For those concerned about mold problems in basements, I have done some research on that issue. I have found that the primary cause apart from obvious foundation issues is that often with traditional construction the wall materials do not allow the basement to 'dry inwards'--meaning any moisture is trapped in the wall. This comes typically as a result of applying a impermeable vapor barrier against the concrete wall or immediately under the finish surface. The recommendation to avoid this is to create a thermal break at the cold concrete wall (typically using an extruded polystyrene "XPS") and then use materials that allow any moisture to dry into the finish space. Additionally, if traditional 2x4 framing is to be used, it should not contact the concrete wall, but instead be installed flush against the XPS. Un-faced fiberglass batting can be installed in the stud cavities if additional insulation is desired. Please see the attached link and download the .pdf file provided by Building Science to read about all of their findings. This is the most straight forward and valuable documentation I have been able to find about basement finishing techniques.

Here is a link that might be useful: Basement Insulation Systems

    Bookmark   May 18, 2009 at 9:19AM
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If you are planning to finish the ceiling & still have access to pipes and electrical boxes, you should check out They have lots of styles and colors to get the look you want and it would be completely resistant to moisture.

Here is a link that might be useful: Basement Ceiling Tiles

    Bookmark   June 26, 2009 at 2:17PM
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