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Basement Insulation in St. Thomas

It’s only been in recent years that basements have been transformed into practical, livable spaces. Originally, the basement was for basically for laundry and storage. There was room for the hot water heater, the furnace (and oil tank), and some extra space for a workshop. But the basement walls were bare brick, without any insulation, and without drywall – the space was cold and damp and musty.

In St. Thomas, basement insulation projects have transformed basements into the comfortable and livable spaces that homeowners enjoy today. For many, basements are multi-functional: sometimes an extra bedroom; sometimes a home-office; sometimes a complete in-law suite. But whatever the function, the primary aim is always comfort – and that comfort derives from a well-insulated space.

The comfort level in the basement comes from a basement space that is well insulated. The basement that’s well insulated provides comfort for occupants from one season to the next, and delivers energy efficiency right through the year. As well, good insulation results in lower utility bills - and in regions where the temperatures are more extreme, this is one of the great benefits for the homeowner. 

Unfortunately, many homeowners don’t realize the full value of a well-insulated basement. For the professional contractor, however, there’s no debate - basements must be as well, or better, insulated than other parts of the home. In fact, a basement insulation project is actually one of the better home projects, and a home improvement investment that can be quickly “paid down” over the years.

When the basement is expertly insulated (with a quality product), there are many benefits to be had. Air flow and air leakage (indoor and outdoor) are both restricted; R-Values of the installed insulation are enhanced; and moisture is stopped from collecting. Overall, energy efficiency is optimized, while the HVAC system operates at peak. Best of all, cost savings on utilities are realized through the year.

For basement insulation, are the project costs worthwhile?

By any measure, insulating the basement is definitely one of the better home improvement projects. A professional installation contributes to lower heating and cooling bills, and to yearly cost savings that will certainly “pay down” the initial cost of installation in a length of time that’s reasonable.

Can all the benefits of insulating be measured accurately?

Among the benefits of improved basement insulation, R-Values (insulation value) are enhanced. This is noticeable in both indoor comfort and energy savings. Indeed, the higher the R-Value, the better the insulation results. And with better insulation comes energy efficiency and lower utility bills.

What are the cost savings when insulation is completed?

Insulation results are dependent on the quality of the insulating product and the quality of the install. Clearly, a quality job delivers better results. And better results mean significant seasonal savings. All things considered, cost savings will vary depending on the size and layout of the basement itself.

Are there building codes to consider when insulating?

Building code requisites depend on the building and the scope of the work. In this regard, an expert contractor will follow the specific requisites for basement insulation, and will advise the homeowner of best options for product and installation. Requisites vary for a new build, renovation or retrofit.

Is there prep work needed before installing insulation?

Basements usually have water entry issues, and these must be properly assessed and appropriately remediated. In some cases, there is substantial work to be done, but whatever the severity of the situation, water entry must be dealt with before any insulation work is commenced.

How can difficult-to-reach areas be properly insulated?

Virtually every basement layout will have a few spots that are difficult-to-reach. As a consequence, these are also quite difficult to insulate. In these situations, spray foam insulation is an ideal solution. There is no other product that seals or insulates as effectively, including every little hole or opening.

In St. Thomas, it’s preferable to have a professional handling basement insulation. A professional can offer viable suggestions on product and installation, and can provide advice to the homeowner on an approach that best suits the situation. Today, many professionals are recommending spray foam insulation. It’s because a single application can deliver more benefits than many other products. And one of the major benefits of insulating with spray foam is the very high level of R-Value installed.

The absolute ultimate in basement insulation starts with the floor. This is an application where foam insulation is sprayed into a floor, and then covered over with a conventional coat of concrete. This is an application that delivers the ultimate in insulating results, but may not be economically suited for every budget. Beyond insulating the floor, basement walls are the next priority, and the emphasis here is on airtightness – it ensures that airflow, air leakage, and moisture collection are constrained.

Whatever the scope of an insulation project, the focus is on energy conservation. And for basements, foam insulation has quickly become a “product of choice”. With many benefits from one application, foam insulation makes the basement airtight, and provides an R-Value that is better than any other product available today. For basement insulation, spray foam has proven itself to deliver many more benefits (short term and long-term) than any of the other products or combination of products.

Industry wide, foam insulation is regarded as a premium product. As such, it may not suit everyone’s budget. In St. Thomas, Ontario, Great Northern Insulation offers up a viable alternative - a “hybrid” approach that incorporates foam insulation and fiberglass “batts” in one install. Here, the foam is sprayed into place, and then followed with a “top-up” of fiberglass “batts”. It’s a cost effective install that provides excellent results in terms of insulation, and provides a reasonable “payback” period.

Most important with basement insulation is to do it expertly and properly the first time. For the professionals at Great Northern Insulation, this is a project with homeowner benefits and savings for years to come. And while foam insulation is top-of-the-list, the “hybrid” from GNI approach is an excellent alternate.
 

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