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Basement Insulation in Orillia

In the “old” days, basements weren’t really used as living space. There was little going on, except for the laundry machines, the furnace, the hot water heater, and plenty of space for storage. In most homes, the walls were cement or brick and there was no insulation and no drywall. Most of the basements were cold, damp, and musty. But over the years, basements became more and more functional, and more and more livable. Today, the basement space is used for many purposes.

Basements have become very livable – they are used as living rooms, bedrooms, offices, and even self contained “in-law suites”. And in most cases, the space is functional and comfortable. The key to indoor comfort comes from good insulation, and a well-insulated basement can provide comfort throughout the seasons. For basement insulation in Orillia, the ever-increasing costs of heating and cooling make a project of this kind particularly important.

In general, homeowners don’t really appreciate the importance of properly insulating the basement. This is a big mistake, mainly because basements should be just as well insulated as other parts of the home. In fact, insulation experts often point out that basement insulation could be more important than some of the other parts of the home. Basement insulation is a home improvement project that will deliver benefits for many years to come, and reduced utility bills are just part of the big picture.

Insulating basement walls, with a good product, and a professional installation, is worth the cost and the effort.  Thermal resistance will be enhanced – indoor and outdoor air transfer will be repressed; and moisture accumulation will be impeded. When a basement is well insulated, the HVAC unit will operate much better, and will ensure more energy conservation. Most importantly, there will be cost savings on utilities from year to year, and especially in areas of the country with extreme weather.

Overall, how worthwhile is it to insulate the basement?

Properly insulating the basement, which includes the walls, is probably one of the most worthwhile home improvement projects that can be made. Well-insulated basements reduce the cost of heating and cooling, and deliver the annual savings that easily substantiate the overall cost of the project.

What do insulation experts suggest for the basement?

The professionals maintain that the benefits of insulating the basement are directly related to the R-Value that’s installed – the higher the R-Value, the better the results. However, specific results will depend on basement size, on the insulation product that is used; and on the installation technique.

What kind of savings should be expected afterwards?

With a quality insulation product, and an expert installation, homeowners are bound to experience substantial utility savings during the winter and summer months. Again, specific savings will depend directly on the size of the basement, the insulation product used, and the amount of R-Value applied.

Are there installation specs for basement insulation?

Depending on the region of the country, there may be a building code for basement insulation. A reliable contractor will explain the specifics, and will suggest an appropriate product and installation method for the job. New home construction will, of course, have more rigorous installation specs.

Do the basement walls need any special preparation?

Most important when preparing a basement for insulation is to determine if there is any water entry. Water entry is a big problem and requires proper fixing before any insulation work is started. And depending on the seriousness of the water entry issue, the fix might become a big project by itself.

How does one properly insulate hard-to-reach areas?

Most basement layouts have hard-to-reach areas. They are quite difficult to properly insulate. The most effective insulation product for those hard-to-reach spots is spray foam. There’s nothing that can seal or insulate as well as the spray foam product, and it can all be done in one application.

For homeowners considering basement insulation in Orillia, a reliable contractor can recommend a product and application that’s best for the job. And more and more professionals believe that spray foam insulation is best for the basement. A comprehensive spray foam installation will envelop the basement completely and will be multi-purpose: an air barrier, a vapor barrier, and an insulator. It’s a single application that will deliver the highest R-Value of any insulation product on the market.

For the very best in insulation, the professionals suggest installing insulation in the basement floor. Spray foam is applied to the floor first, and then concrete is applied on top. This is the most effective sealing and insulating technique available. With regard to the rest of the basement, the key is to achieve an airtight space. Airtightness will constrain airflow and will hinder the accumulation of moisture.

Insulating the basement is about energy conservation, and that translates into seasonal energy savings. The best results come with spray foam insulation – it’s a high quality product, with a proven installation methodology. Spray foam insulation does it all in one application: it creates a basement that is airtight; it provides an effective air barrier AND moisture barrier; and it delivers insulation with an R-Value that is higher than any other product on the market.

Spray foam is a premium product and installation, and may not suit all project budgets. An excellent alternative is the “hybrid” approach – a combination install of spray foam and fiberglass “batts”. For this, spray foam is installed initially, with a supplemental install of the fiberglass “batts”.  These products work well together and will deliver excellent results. Most importantly, the “hybrid” approach is cost effective for most any budget, and with both short term and long term benefits.

Basement insulation is a major project. It’s important to do it right the first time. Clearly, spray foam insulation is the best product on the market, but for many, the “hybrid” installation is an excellent alternative. Working together, the spray foam install and the “batts” deliver exceptional value for the dollar. Simply put, the spray foam seals and insulates, and the fiberglass “batts” enhance the R-Value, while keeping the project on budget.

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