Finishing Basement Room - Insulate Ceiling?


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Old 12-06-09, 07:14 AM
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Finishing Basement Room - Insulate Ceiling?

Hi all,

I have a 2/3 finished basement currently with no A/C or heat vents. While it gets slightly chilly down there it is comfortable for my taste, I like it cold.

I am currently finishing a small storage room to convert it to a home office. Again, no heat or A/C in the room although the ductwork does pass through a soffit in the ceiling.

Should I insulate the ceiling? I am going to insulate the room between the office and finished basement because our entertainment system is in there and I would assume that would help the noise. I am concerned if I insulate too much it will get too hot/cold in there as I do not have any vents.

Do I need to install vents as well?

My thought is if I leave it unconditioned it will remain cool and the computer and other electronics in the room will through off a little heat making it perfectly comfortable as.

Just want to do it right why everything is opened up.

Thanks!

-Ivan
 
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Old 12-06-09, 07:56 AM
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Why would you insulate the ceiling? It will definitely cool that space down. Insulating it will help with noise, but that assumes you still want the actual space to be conditioned (heating or cooling). So I'd do it for sound perhaps but not because you aim to keep the basement unconditioned vs the rest of the house.
 
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Old 12-06-09, 08:16 AM
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Hi Ivan,
Basements are complex and any decision on moving forward is based upon how you got to where you are. Finishing a basement requires careful moisture management. It can start with landscaping and treatment of the outside of the concrete/block walls (more than the typical tar coating) on in to choosing the permeability of the wall components along with heat and moisture management equipment.

As for insulating the ceiling of the new space, that is usually done to either reduce noise, or prevent the loss of heat from above into that space, ie an unheated basement or crawl space. In your application it seems like some heat from above would not be a problem. How you choose to treat your exterior walls and floor is another issue. Dry basements only seem dry because the moisture migrating through them is small and has a place to evaporate, your basement. Once you apply coverings, that moisture will either pass through the coverings, permeability, or accumulate (be trapped) on the wall side, where it poses the possibility to grow microorganisms.

Adding some heat and air exchange would probably be good for down there. To conserve energy, air sealing all penetrations up into the walls and floors above, electrical, plumbing, chimneys, sinks and bathtubs, and such is a very good step. Add to that a well air seal and insulated rim joist and your basement will stay warmer by default. As for any ac in the summer, a good sized dehumidifier will remove troublesome moisture and the basement walls should keep it cool.

I hope that helps,
Bud

Sorry SKoorb to duplicate your suggestion, my post got lost and I moved to word to retype it.
 

Last edited by Bud9051; 12-06-09 at 08:19 AM. Reason: duplicate information
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Old 12-06-09, 07:21 PM
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Okay so I am going to skip the insulation in the ceiling, I already did insulate the perimeter walls and have been watching while open to make sure I do not have any moisture issues... One good thing is I do have a french drain around the perimeter just in case....

I am not really concerned about noise because I think once I add the sheetrock that will quiet it down enough for my needs....

My one concern is one wall of the room is common to the back of my 42" plasma and bose system. Should I insulate that wall for noise or the double sided rock should kill it enough?
 
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Old 12-06-09, 07:44 PM
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Hi again, yes, the extra insulation will help with the noise. Just the sheetrock will probably not be enough.

Now I'm going to pick on you. No matter how delicately I try to tell people they HAVE a moisture problem in their basement, because ALL basements have a moisture problem, they (you) gloss over it because they don't see water flowing in through the walls. The french drain is not the solution, but not a bad idea for leaks or floods. We are talking about moisture diffusion that occurs with concrete walls. The only true dry ones are out in the Nevada desert, or have been wrapped in waterproof membrane during construction. The rest of us have to be aware that the moisture IS there.

I hope you take this in good spirits as no flame is intended. It is just that your response was so typical I felt I had to say something. I'll add a link that will explain better, but keep your eyes, and nose, open for the first signs of basement air, that funny smell no one wants to admit might be m**d.
BSD-103: Understanding Basements —

Bud
 
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Old 12-06-09, 07:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Bud9051 View Post
Hi again, yes, the extra insulation will help with the noise. Just the sheetrock will probably not be enough.

Now I'm going to pick on you. No matter how delicately I try to tell people they HAVE a moisture problem in their basement, because ALL basements have a moisture problem, they (you) gloss over it because they don't see water flowing in through the walls. The french drain is not the solution, but not a bad idea for leaks or floods. We are talking about moisture diffusion that occurs with concrete walls. The only true dry ones are out in the Nevada desert, or have been wrapped in waterproof membrane during construction. The rest of us have to be aware that the moisture IS there.

I hope you take this in good spirits as no flame is intended. It is just that your response was so typical I felt I had to say something. I'll add a link that will explain better, but keep your eyes, and nose, open for the first signs of basement air, that funny smell no one wants to admit might be m**d.
BSD-103: Understanding Basements —

Bud
No offense taken at all. I understand your point and do appreciate the time you are spending in answer and caring in what a stranger is doing, with that in mind you have a right to hit us over the head when we do not listen...

However, my lack of concern from moisture comes from the previous home owner.... I am only dealing with 7' of an exposed concrete wall. The other portion of the finished basement is long done and closed up. So considering there is probably another 50-70' of linear wall space that is not treated I am not overly concerned about the 7' dealing with now....

But, to do it right what would I do to protect the wall from moisture? I did drylok the unfinished part of the basement as I did notice some moisture coming through there... Now, I have nothing in that portion.
 
 

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