Thursday, March 13, 2014

Basement: Framing and Insulation.

The basement is slowly coming along. Not nearly at the speed we would like, but it's at least doing something. Really we have someone doing work here about one or two days a week. If it was five days a week or maybe even two to three days a week, we would be further along. Maybe even done...

Here are a few shots of it mostly empty before anything started. Part of me wishes I would  have been a little better about documenting, but I can't go backwards now (setting up the same shots at the same angles, etc.).

It's really not pretty at all... But these couple of shots gives you a decent idea of what's going on. It's just a giant rectangle. Laundry area in one corner, other utilities in the middle, and mostly empty everywhere else.


Framing went up fairly fast until we hit a road block. The city took about a month to get us the main building permit for the basement for a few different reasons, but the contractor couldn't finish up framing until the city had for sure approved part of his plans. That part of the plan involved moving one of the column supports (I'm not that great at technical building terms...) that supports the main beam that runs the length of the house. That require pouring new footings and putting in new supports.

The entire front half of the basement (shown above) will be a family room. It's large enough for a TV area and then maybe a game area (table and chairs / shelving). All the way at the end of the above photo and to the right is the bedroom.

There were also some delays from moving the plumbing for laundry stuff and a few other miscellaneous pipes that needed to be out of the way. We were at our peak of negative temps and for the first time ever, there were at least three days of school closings in about a month for insanely cold temps. So, all of the plumbers in the area were running around, dealing with people's frozen and burst pipes. Eventually, the plumping got done and we now have almost all new plumbing below (most of the old resides in the walls upstairs). So, we are all fancy and new with that flexible plastic piping, but I'll probably detail that all in another post.

These framing photos were all post electrical and pre pumbing. But if you look closely, you can see that the framing isn't quite done yet.

Our framing inspection happened just over a week ago (it was more done than the above shows) and the spray foam guys jumped in the house as soon as the inspector was out the door. We opted to go with the spray foam for a slightly higher cost because it is a basement and the spray foam is mold and mildew resistant. I believe it is supposed to better overall at insulating as well. The basement is great at staying cold, so anything that can help make it warmer in the winter is best. Plus we were able to get it sprayed into the floor joists above at the ends to help keep the house warmer.

I wasn't able to get in before the drywall was brought in. You can tell in a couple of these that they're mid column removal and adding the new ones from the weird temp supports going on.

Over the weekend before the spray foam happened, we jumped in and added R19 insulation (fun pink stuff) into the floor above to help with sound. We had to make sure to keep the exterior walls area clear for the spray foam, so it wasn't something we were able to finish in one swoop. For not being professionals, it went fairly fast. It was easy to get into the groove of it too.

For this, we spent under $200 out of  pocket, which should be worth it. In the end we will spend a little more, because we didn't tackle the unfinished area of the basement and still plan to do so. I guess it isn't something that is normally done unless requested (at least with our contractor) and we never thought about it when we walked through everything for the estimate.

After the spray foam went in, we finished up the ceiling/upstairs floor, so that it could be ready for drywallers asap. I can already hear (not hear?) the difference. I'm hoping that with actual walls, it will be even better.

Up next, drywall!

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