Basement Insulation in Mississauga
It used to be that our basements were reserved almost entirely for the HVAC equipment, the water heater, and the washing machine and dryer. And all of those things we didn’t want upstairs, we just stashed in the basement. Few basements were “finished”, never mind insulated in any way. But over the years, basement space has become much more valuable, and many of us consider it living space. Unfortunately, making it comfortable didn’t always necessitate adequate insulation.
Things have changed dramatically in recent years. Basements have become second living rooms; home offices; extra bedrooms; even separate income suites. And we all want those spaces to be comfortable. That’s why insulating basement walls is essential – and especially since energy costs are constantly on the rise. For those considering basement insulation in Mississauga, it’s for conserving energy and saving on energy costs – and that applies to the winter months as it does to the summer.
The average homeowner does not give enough thought to insulating the basement. It’s quite wrong because the basement area should really be as well insulated as any other part of the house. In fact, insulating basement walls might be considered more important. Because of the physical nature of basements, there is very good reason to seal, insulate and ventilate the space. Properly done, this will reduce heating/cooling costs; it will equalize heating/cooling cycles; and it will save energy.
Insulating basement walls has a number of proven benefits: thermal resistance is enhanced; the movement of indoor and outdoor air is controlled; and moisture movement is better regulated. The newly insulated space will allow the HVAC unit (heating, ventilation, air conditioning) to work more efficiently; it will provide more comfort for occupants; and it will reduce energy consumption. All in all, it translates into reducing utility bills – basement insulation is proactive and practical.
Is insulating the basement walls worthwhile?
Properly insulating the basement walls is definitely worthwhile. It’s a cost-effective project that will save money. In most parts of the country, it turns out to be good value for both summer and winter. Indeed, benefits are more noticeable in areas with dramatic shifts in seasonal weather patterns.
What do the experts have to say about insulating?
Canadian researchers studied different basement configurations, using various insulation products and install methods. They determined that the cost-benefit of basement insulation was improved in relation to the R-Value (a measure of thermal resistance) – in other words, the higher the better.
What kind of cost savings can be expected by insulating?
The annual savings will depend on a number of variables: the size of basement; the R-Value that was installed; and the geographic area of the country. However, the experts are in agreement that when a good product is professionally installed, there are significant savings on heating and cooling.
Are there any specifications for insulating the basement?
In some areas of the country, there are actually minimum building code requirements when insulating the basement. A reliable contractor can advise on the best-suited product and installation options. Naturally, there will be different specifications when dealing with new construction.
Should basements be insulated from the inside or the outside?
Every contractor will have a different approach, but all agree that the physical characteristics of the house and basement will have a bearing on the approach. Inside or outside, there are upsides and downsides to both. Indeed, the project budget may have a direct bearing on the course of action.
What preparation is needed for basement insulation?
Most important, prior to installing basement insulation, is to accurately determine if there is water entry of any kind. Water entry issues must be resolved well before any insulation work is expedited. Depending on the seriousness of the issue, the fix may well turn into a project with some dimension.
Can hard-to-reach areas in the basement be insulated?
Basements usually have some hard-to-reach areas, which are difficult to insulate. These areas are best insulated with spray foam insulation. No other product will reach those areas as effectively. And with total coverage, spray foam seals, insulates, and creates a vapor barrier all in one installation.
For homeowners undertaking basement insulation in Mississauga, it should all start by creating an airtight space. In general, contractors agree, and will provide appropriate recommendations for both product and installation. The basement floor should really be insulated as well as any other part of the house. For this, the best application is an initial base of spray foam, with the customary concrete layer right on top. Where a budget will allow, this application will deliver the best results.
When it comes to the basement walls, an airtight environment is also essential. Airtightness will restrict air movement and block the accumulation of moisture. Here, the best approach is to install spray foam insulation first, along with fiberglass “batts” - they will perform in combination far better than other comparable products. The spray foam creates a vapor barrier, air barrier, and insulating layer in one application. And the “batts” provide added R-Value that is both effective and affordable.
The idea behind insulating the basement is energy conservation, along with the prospect of reducing heating and cooling bills. In this regard, the best product for the job is spray foam. In fact, more and more insulation professionals are recommending the product. But for some, spray foam insulation is a costly endeavor, making the combined installation of “batts” AND spray foam an ideal application. Long-term, the payback period is reasonable, and the reduced bills make the project cost worthy.
A properly insulated basement space delivers results for the long term. And for many, the combined installation of fiberglass “batts” PLUS spray foam becomes the ideal option. When the project is done, the basement is airtight; with a high quality air and moisture barrier; and with a spray foam blanket that provides the highest R-Value of any comparable product. With annual energy savings that are sizeable, a typical homeowner can experience utility savings that will easily substantiate project cost.