So, you’ve got an unfinished basement. Perhaps it’s the place where seasonal decorations and exercise equipment go to be ignored. Or maybe your basement is an empty space you walk through quickly because it’s too cold in the winter and too clammy in the summer. If you’ve been considering making your basement more efficient and comfy, you’re probably asking yourself if insulating your basement ceiling and walls is worthwhile. The answer is probably yes, but let’s explore why that is.
If your basement is not finished or already insulated, you’re not just wasting what could be extra living space; your home’s overall efficiency is also taking a hit. Uninsulated basements make your heating and cooling system work overtime, inflating your energy costs.
You may assume the solution is to shut the basement air vents. But if the builder planned ahead, he or she sized the heating and cooling system for the home’s overall square footage, including the basement, so you could finish it one day without upgrading the HVAC equipment. This means if you close the vents, you’ll throw off the return-supply balance and force your furnace or air conditioning system to work harder, resulting in the opposite of what you were hoping for.
The best part is that insulating your basement can make your home more comfy and could even cut down on your energy bill. It’s a win-win!
A good job involves more than merely putting some insulation on your walls or ceiling and calling it a day. Several types of insulation are available, each with advantages and disadvantages to contemplate. You need to also determine where insulation will be the most beneficial—in the walls or on the ceiling.
Most residences benefit from insulated basement walls. It’s like giving your home a nice, warm blanket to wrap around itself during cold weather, leading to big energy savings. Insulating your walls also helps soundproof the area if you plan to put a home theater or other potentially noisy features in the basement.
Note: If your basement is predisposed to water leaks or moisture, deal with these issues first. “Insulated” doesn’t mean “weatherproofed,” and wet insulation is a waste of money.
This choice as to whether to insulate your basement ceiling isn’t always so simple. It’s true, insulating the ceiling makes the first floor of your home feel more cozy, but it can also make your basement colder. If you intend to finish your basement one day, you might not want to take this road. Rather than do that, you could install ductwork and vents, if not already present, to help balance the temperature. On the other hand, if your basement is simply used for storage, feel free to insulate that ceiling!
You’ve toyed with the idea of insulating the basement ceiling and walls, but have you thought about the floor? If you reside in a cooler climate or you plan to spend a lot of time in your new basement space, insulating the floor is a wise move. An insulated subfloor topped with your choice of carpet, wood or composite flooring will make your winter movie nights or workout sessions much better.
You have options when it comes to insulating your basement. The most popular materials include:
The R-value of an insulation material is a reflection of its heat flow resistance. The greater the R-value, the better the insulation. While local building codes set the minimum R-value recommended for your region, go higher if you can for optimum efficiency. Here are some general guidelines:
Apart from insulating, you can do numerous other things to keep your home and basement comfortable:
Whether you want to improve your home’s insulation or install other comfort-enhancing equipment, choose Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing for a job well done. We offer excellent quality, experience and peace of mind, with 24/7 availability and a one-year 100% satisfaction guarantee. If you’re eager to take the next step in home comfort in the U.S., contact Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing to request the services you need. Call 866-397-3787 today to learn how we can help!
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