Basement Wall advice

Will960April 30, 2014

So we are planning on finishing the basement in our raised ranch which has a 4 ft concrete wall with a standard exterior 2x4 wall on top of that. I'm looking for any feedback regarding the wall design and materials to use.

The floor has cut outs from previous walls which is why you will see a 2x4 with a 2x6 on top, we are using the 2x6 to allow a non-PT 2x4 wall with an inch of XPS behind it to prevent moisture.

I've attached a picture with the wall design, we plan on using "Mold Tough" drywall on all the new walls.


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The XPS should be fastened directly to the wall. Unfortunately, the long outdated "wisdom" of leaving "breathing space" is still hanging all around the Internet.

Instead of pt plates, I would suggest strips of 1" min thickness XPS under the plates, wood or light steel. I don't like the idea of cutting chemical laden pt in a basement .

Here is a link that might be useful: Building Science Corp.: Basement Insulation

    Bookmark   May 1, 2014 at 2:25PM
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Thanks! We are going to use 2" XPS which should fill that "breathing space" void perfectly.

The dimensions of the basement allow us to use full 8ft pieces of 2x4/2x6 without any cutting. With this in mind do you still suggest XPS under the plates? What added protection would that give that the PT plates don't?

    Bookmark   May 1, 2014 at 3:14PM
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XPS is unaffected by moisture. I've seen pressure-treated fences and posts fall over with rot in less than 20 years. If you're using wood baseplates, at least put them on top of minimum 6 mil thick plastic sheeting to stop the continual upward moisture drive from the basement floor. You can buy one-foot wide rolls of the sheeting made just for the purpose.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2014 at 6:20PM
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