Unless you use your basement as an extended living space, you may be hesitant to insulate it. It is pointless to heat a space that you do not spend time in – right? Wrong. Hiring insulation contractors to insulate your basement is a good idea for a number of reasons. As the typical basement loses a significant amount of heat, insulating the space can have a direct impact on your energy bills and comfort. Most basements are constructed of brick, concrete, and rubble, none of which are good insulating materials. Learn exactly why it is a good idea to insulate your basement and how to do it right by hiring professional insulation contractors.
Keep Moisture Under Control
Moisture is your home’s worst enemy. At any given time, your concrete foundation contains several thousand pounds of water (or more if it is freshly poured). Over time, groundwater and rain diffuse into the concrete. While an asphalt exterior coating is often used to keep the interior dry, even the smallest of cracks can allow water to seep in. By adding insulation both outside and inside, you can prevent costly damage to your home by controlling moisture using waterproof materials like a vapor barrier.
Protect Against Freeze Damage
Water is not the only foe you need to worry about in your basement. Concrete, brick, rubble mortar, and other materials in your basement are also susceptible to freeze damage. The freeze-thaw cycle can be rough on your foundation, resulting in problems like cracks. If moisture is getting into your basement, you can expect any water to freeze in the winter, resulting in more damage. Once you have the water problem under control, you do not have to worry about freezing. Insulating your basement can also help keep this space warmer and less prone to freeze damage.
Meet New Building Codes
If you are remodeling your basement, you will need to insulate the space for warmth and energy efficiency. You will also need to meet building codes in your area. Most new building codes require a certain R-Value when insulating a basement. R-10 continuous insulation is acceptable for basement walls according to Virginia code. However, R-13 is required if the insulation is going to be installed between the framing members. If you are not sure which type of insulation and R-Value is best for basement remodel project, contact professional insulation contractors who will guide you in the right direction.
Create an Effective Fire Block
Fire blocking is the use of materials placed between the top plate of the exterior wall and masonry wall. This process is performed to prevent the spread of flames and smoke from reaching the first floor in the event of a fire in the basement. The blocking is typically made of wood or drywall and works by essentially “starving” the fire by minimizing the amount of combustible oxygen. Insulation contractors can then install fire rated insulation in the walls to increase energy efficiency without causing a fire hazard.
Block Sounds and Reduce Noise
Whether it is a noisy furnace or kids playing in the basement, you likely want to keep any noise in the basement away from your main living areas. Installing certain types of insulation can help block sounds and reduce noise. Soundproofing insulation include options such as fiberglass, cellulose, and foam. These types of insulation help reduce noises from room to room and between levels of your home. Both cellulose and fiberglass insulation can be installed in floors, ceilings, and walls, making it a versatile choice for homeowners who desire soundproofing without spending a bundle.
Reduce Energy Consumption
One of the most noticeable advantages of insulating a basement is a reduction in energy consumption. Insulation acts as a protective cover, shielding your home from fluctuations in temperature. When insulation is added to the walls and ceiling, it helps regulate indoor temperatures which in turn lowers your energy bills. When your home has been professionally insulated, you can expect your heating and cooling systems to work more efficiently, which lowers your utility bills. As your units do not have to work as hard to maintain a desirable temperature, you can also extend your HVAC system’s expected lifespan.
Enhance Indoor Comfort
Insulation works by preventing heat loss. Therefore, your home is able to maintain a more comfortable temperature year-round. In addition to keeping heat in during the winter months, insulation also keeps cool air in during the summer months. Insulation helps homeowners maintain a more consistent temperature indoors which can help you avoid cold spots or uneven heating in different rooms. This also has a direct effect on your home’s efficiency. With a more regulated indoor temperature, your HVAC system does not have to work as hard to keep your home comfortable.
Prevent Pipes from Freezing
While not as common as other problems caused by an uninsulated basement, pipes have the potential to freeze if a space becomes too cold. Many homeowners do not heat their basements, which can result in low temperatures that freeze exposed pipes. Instead of wrapping the pipes to prevent them from freezing, installing insulation is a more efficient and long-term solution. Pipes can also be covered in foam pipe insulation which is typically enough to prevent freezing in moderately cold climates. If pipes in the basement have frozen in the past, it is probably due to inadequate or improperly installed insulation. If you fail to remedy the problem, it will likely occur again when the weather gets cold.
Insulation Installation Services
If you are deciding whether or not to insulate your basement, consider all of the benefits of basement insulation. From a warmer home to saved energy costs, insulating your basement is a one-time cost that can have positive long-term effects. At Beyond Exteriors in Chantilly, VA, we offer professional insulation installation services using certified Johns Manville Formaldehyde-free home insulation. In addition to superior products, our team of insulation contractors also provides top-tier customer service. To learn more about basement insulation or to schedule a consultation, contact us today.