Home insulation is something that you shouldn’t ignore. Most people forget the importance of insulation because it’s not always visible. By properly insulating your basement, you will improve indoor comfort and increase your home’s energy efficiency. This can save you about 10% on your heating and cooling costs.
With the popularity of do-it-yourself home projects, more people are installing insulation themselves. This allows them to save cash compared to hiring professionals. While DIY insulation is cheaper, you might not be familiar with the proper techniques involved. You could end up making mistakes that will ultimately cost a lot of money. Below, we have listed some of the most common mistakes when installing basement insulation materials.
Ignoring Insulation Regulations
Local building codes and regulations exist for a reason—to ensure the safety of each home renovation project. When it comes to insulating your basement, there are several regulations in place. But not all homeowners are aware of or follow such guidelines.
Minimum insulation requirements vary depending on the state, but basement walls need to be insulated to an R-value of at least R-10. If you opt for foam insulation, the thickness of the foam boards should be between two to seven inches.
Failing to achieve the required R-value or insulation thickness will lead to insufficient insulation. This means that air leaks have not been addressed. Keeping up to date with insulation regulations will help ensure adequate energy efficiency in your basement.
Leaving Gaps in the Insulation
Insulation works by slowing heat transfer and trapping air within the insulation material. To effectively block the heat flow, all gaps in your basement walls and ceiling must be filled. When air can easily slip through the gaps and holes, the basement insulation becomes weak and useless.
Going the DIY route or hiring an inexperienced contractor can lead to costly mistakes. There’s a chance that they will miss nooks and crannies that need to be filled. For small cracks and gaps, we recommend using foam insulation and caulk. All openings must be covered properly to guarantee effective insulation. Leaving gaps will cause air and moisture to leak inside your basement space.
Choosing Cheap Materials
Yes, cheaper prices for insulation can be tempting but cheap doesn’t always mean good. Sometimes, cheap insulation materials are low-quality that won’t last long. In the end, you might spend more than what you initially intended to. Cheap insulation materials might cause air leakage, poor air quality, and higher replacement costs. That’s why you shouldn’t skimp on your basement insulation project.
Always keep in mind that different types of insulation come at different price points. Do not choose based on price alone. Instead, pick an insulation material that’s most compatible with your basement.
Putting Too Much Insulation
Anything too much is always bad. Over-insulation will trap warm air and cause poor ventilation in your basement. When this occurs, moisture starts to build up until mold growth becomes visible. This can also cause structural damage since more insulation means additional weight.
A sufficient amount of insulation can tightly seal the interior of your basement. If there are too many layers of insulation, moisture will surely get trapped within those layers. Take careful consideration of factors like basement size, local building codes, and target energy efficiency to determine the right amount of basement insulation. A professional basement remodeler can guide you in having a well-insulated home.
Installing the Wrong Insulation
There are different types of insulation: fiberglass, foam, and cellulose. Since you have various options, you need to be careful in selecting the right type of basement insulation. Not all insulation materials can be installed in below-grade spaces. Using the wrong type of insulation can lead to huge problems.
For example, fiberglass insulation is a terrible choice for basements. It does not resist moisture, which means your basement might be prone to mold issues. Fiberglass is much more suitable for walls and attics. If you’re unsure about your options, a trained basement contractor can advise you on the right type of insulation.
Get in Touch With Us!
To avoid these mistakes, leave the basement insulation to the pros. Pittsburgh Basement Remodeling is a trusted basement company in the Pennsylvania area. Our skilled contractors provide a wide range of services from basement design to insulation. We are ready to handle your basement project right away. Don’t hesitate to call us today!