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Insulating lower level...??

Posted by chitowngc (My Page) on
Sat, Jul 31, 10 at 14:28

I have a lower level that is half in ground/half above. The framing has newer R-13 batt insulation. I have a bunch of 2" pink board insulation(polysomething??). I have a few options what to do to make best use of it..

1. Move the metal framing(see pic) to allow insulation between framing and concrete foundation. This will give me a good vapor barrier.

2. Cut the insulation to fit between metal studs.

3. Use the boards over the framing and batt insulation to give better R value?

4. Buy more boards and install insulation over metal studs and drywall over that?

5. Return the boards to HD and use the money elsewhere?

Couple things.. I'm on a tight budget. I've been told conflicting info on installing pink boards over kraft faced batt insulation? Covering concrete foundation... does it really help? Since it's insulated by the ground around the outside, do you gain much insulating inside?

Thank you all...

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RE: Insulating lower level...??

What a shame someone went to the effort to put in metal studs without understanding some basics about insulation.

The problem with the metal framing is not its distance from the wall, but the fact that it sits on lumber that is not protected from the basement floor by at least a strip of poly, as per Code. You are now guaranteed to get rot and mould in that wood.

For the easiest fix, I'd swap out the wood baseplates and put an equivalent strip of polystyrene (XPS )--the pink board--in their places. If you leave the framing in the same position, you can slip in sheets of 1/2" XPS between the wall and framing.

If you are in a cold zone, you will have to add at least another inch of XPS between the metal studs. In warmer zones, you can add fiber glass batts on top of the 1/2" XPS. Use tongue and groove XPS or at least tape all the seams. For the above-grade portion, you should add more fg.

The rule of thumb devised by building scientist Joe Lstiburek for insulating homes north of the Mason-Dixon Line is "10-20-40-60 ." These are the R factors for, respectively, the basement slab, basement foundation walls, above-grade walls and the attic.

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


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