Just got off the phone with my builder and it appears that, like any new home in Newfoundland, the basement will come uninsulated. I considered getting the builder to insulate the basement for me, however, I'm attempting to become more handy.
After attending a few Home Depot seminars, I'm pretty confident that I can tackle the project of insulating my own basement (famous last words?). My new basement will be floor to ceiling concrete, so my plan is first cover my concrete walls with glued on 4'x8' (1" thick) sheets of Extruded polystyrene foam (pink stuff). After tuck taping all the seams, I plan to frame the walls with 2"x4"x8' plywood with 24" centers.
After all the walls get framed, I plan to use pink fiberglass batt insulation (23.5" wide) to fill in the "centers". Oh one more thing, I plan to insulate the rim joists (portion of the basement ceiling joists that connects with the exterior wall) with cut to size fiberglass batts. Typically vapor barrier is needed on top of the batt insulation, but extruded (not expanded) polystyrene foam with tuck tape will act as the vapor barrier.
If you're looking for a more information on the "how to", check out this article by The Family Handyman.
How much will this cost?
Providing that I borrow the tools required (miter saw, utility knife, drill), these are the materials that are required (based on 140 linear feet):
- 37 sheets Extruded polystyrene foam (couple extra) @ $20/sheet = $740
- 5 x PL300 Glue @ $4.50 x tube = $22.50
- 4 x Tuck Tape Roll @ $10 / roll = $40
- 4 x Caulking tube @ $5 / tube = $20
- 2"x4"x8' Studs x 125 @ $3.60/piece = $450
- 3" Wood/2.5" concrete screws = $100 (estimate)
- 23.5" x 4' fiberglass batt insulation x 7 bags @ $40/bag = $280
- 15.5" x 4' fiberglass bat insulation x 1 bag @ $37/bag = $37
- Total: $1689.50 + tax = $1926.03
The local power company (Newfoundland Power) offers a rebate if you do insulation type projects. I think it works out to be around 10% of your total cost. On top of that, you can sometimes get "contractor pricing" from the hardware stores if you buy enough stuff. Or, I can wait for the materials to go on sale. However, for the sake of simplicity, I won't account for these discounts yet.
How much will I save?
Judging from my last energy saving article, 25-30% of your heat can be lost through the basement. With the power bill being 60% heat, I would estimate that I will save 25% x 60% = 15% / month. Assuming that my power bill will be around $250/month (equal payment plan), I will save around $37.50 / month. With the cost of the project being around $1,926, it will take around 51 months or 4.28 years for the project to pay for itself. That's not including the added value to the property.
That's phase 1 of my basement development! It might take a few years, but I plan to take it right to the end. Sorry about the painful details, I added them all so that when I do actually start the project, I have something to reference.
Any handy people out there? What are your thoughts on this project?If you would like to read more articles like this, you can sign up for my free weekly money tips newsletter below (we will never spam you).