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Basement Insulation in Whitby

Only recently have our basements become comfortable living spaces. Many years ago, basements were for doing the laundry and for additional storage space. There was also plenty of room for the water heater and for the furnace equipment. Quite often, the man of the house would have a work area. The foundation walls were brick and mortar - there was no insulation whatsoever - and the space was cold and damp. In Whitby, basement insulation has made the space livable and usable.

Today, most basements are functional, multi-purpose spaces, and are definitely livable. There’s space for an additional bedroom; for a home-based office; even for a completely self-contained guest unit.   The basement has become a habitable, comfortable space. And comfort comes from good insulation. Basements that have been well insulated provide more than just comfort – the entire house actually becomes more energy efficient, and energy efficiency translates into utility savings around the year.

Most homeowners don’t fully realize the importance of basement insulation. The fact is, basements should be insulated with the same consideration given to other parts of a house. For that matter, the experts maintain that insulating the basement is even more critical. In so many homes, insulating the basement is one of the better home improvement projects – it’s an investment where the savings on annual utility bills can actually defray the cost of the project itself.

Properly insulating a basement can bring many benefits to a home, and with a top-quality product, the results are quite noticeable.  Indoor and outdoor airflow is effectively curtailed; insulation value (thermal resistance) is dramatically improved; and moisture collection is limited. In addition, energy consumption is optimized, primarily because the entire HVAC system is finally working efficiently. In the end it means significant savings on seasonal utility bills, particularly during seasonal extremes.

Is it really worthwhile to insulate the basement area?

As mentioned, insulating the basement is one of the most productive home improvement projects. A good installation is sure to reduce seasonal heating and cooling costs. And those annual savings are sure to significantly defray the original project cost. Over the years, the payback period is worth it.

What is the best approach for basement insulation?

The benefits are derived when R-Value is ample. The formula is easy:  the higher the R-Value rating, the better the insulation results. And with better insulation comes better energy efficiency. But the results will differ with every project: by basement size; by insulation product; and by installation.

What range of cost savings should be the expected?

Everything will depend on a quality product and a quality installation. However, a good install will certainly bring quantifiable cost savings on summer and winter utilities. Again, specific savings will depend on the project scope: basement size; insulation product; and totality of R-Value.

What are the required installation specifications?

Building code requisites sometimes vary in different localities and regions.  Good contractors know all the rules and regulations, and understand building specs. As such, they will recommend product options that are best suited.  Specifications do differ for new builds, retrofits, and renovations.

Is there preparation required prior to insulating?

Most critical prior to any insulation project is to check for water entry troubles. Water entry is a serious challenge, regardless of the gravity. It requires an immediate fix, and may be a big project just on its own. One way or another, a water entry issue must be remediated without compromise.

How are the hard-to-reach spots best handled?

The hard-to-reach spots, which every basement has, are difficult to penetrate and insulate. The most effective approach is to install spray foam – there’s no other product that can effectively penetrate, seal and insulate. A comprehensive application seals up every hole and gap, every crack and crevice.

In Whitby, basement insulation recommendations are best offered by insulation experts. A reliable contractor can suggest the product and installation that will offer the best results. And today, many professionals are opting for spray foam. It has become a product-of-choice for many, mostly because of the benefits. One spray foam install does it all: providing effective insulation coverage; serving as a combination air/vapor barrier; and allowing for the highest R-Value rating when compared.

For the best installation of all, the experts recommend insulation for the entire basement floor. For this, spray foam is applied as an initial layer and then covered with a layer of concrete. This approach to sealing and insulating delivers by far the best results. But it’s also an application that isn’t suited for every budget. Beyond the floor, basement walls are in most need of good insulation. The objective here is to construct a completely airtight space, where both airflow and moisture can be retrained.

In the end, insulating the basement is about energy conservation. For this, the best product on the market is spray foam insulation. It’s a product that can accomplish a lot with one single application. A professional install will ensure that the basement is airtight, and will guarantee an air/vapor barrier that is comprehensive. Finally, the basement will have an insulating R-Value that is more substantial than any other comparable product. In short, spray foam is multi purpose, with the most attributes.

Understandably, spray foam is a premium product that does not fit every budget. An alternative, known as the “hybrid” approach, combines spray foam and fiberglass “batts” into one installation. It’s an install that applies spray foam firstly, and follows with a top-up of fiberglass “batts”. The “hybrid” option is cost effective for all budgets, and delivers excellent results. For basement insulation, project costs are worthwhile, with a reasonable payback period over the long run.

Regardless of basement size, insulation should be installed properly the first time around. Clearly, spray foam is the product of choice for many, but the “hybrid” install can deliver excellent results, excellent value, and excellent long-term benefits. And without doubt, this is a project for those with the experience and expertise to guarantee results for the short term and the long run.

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