insulation between basement and first floor


Old 11-06-01, 10:00 AM
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The 1922 colonial I recently moved into has R-19 FG batts between the basement ceiling joists. I have a hot water heating system (gas fired boiler in the basement, radiators throughout). While there are no radiators in the basement, making it technically "unheated" space, the boiler and hot water pipes running across the ceiling give off enough radiant heat to keep it fairly comfortable. My basement is currently "unfinished" with block walls, but it is used frequently for laundry, workshop, and eventually I plan to add a rec room. I am considering ripping down the existing R-19 and using it to supplement my attic, to save money and because frankly I'm not sure what purpose it serves where it is. Does anyone know of any reasons to insulate between the basement and first floor if my intent is to heat the basement (indirectly through the boiler)? Would removing the insulation cause the hot air to travel through the ceiling into the first floor and make the basement colder?

As a somewhat related issue, I saw on a home improvement show that you can save in heating costs by caulking around the hot water pipe penetrations coming from the basement into the first floor. I'm assuming that the only reason for doing this is if you don't want the basement to be heated and you insulated the hot water pipes, otherwise I'm not sure why I would do this. Any thoughts?
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Old 11-06-01, 07:17 PM
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My guess would be that the insulation was installed in the floor to diminish sound transfer between floors.. I am sure it does help to keep the basement slightly warmer than if you were to remove it..

Not sure how sealing off penetrations from the basement to the 1st floor would actually save on utilities, however to use an intumescent caulk or mineral wool to block off the penetrations, would be extrememly beneficial to stop dangerous gases or slow down the spread of fire, in case of a fire which started in your basement.

Good luck

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