The Importance of Basement Insulation
Insulating a basement might seem obvious to a North American homeowner, but the importance of the effort is often underestimated. Simply put, basement insulation is as crucial and essential as any other part of the house. For insulation professionals, the ideal is to insulate a home from top to bottom. A well sealed, insulated, and ventilated home will deliver results for years to come.
A poorly insulated basement will allow air movement to compromise indoor temperatures right around the year. In summer, warm air will intrude, while cool air will escape. In winter, heat will escape, while cold outdoor air will intrude. It means that the HVAC system (including the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) will be overworked in order to maintain stable temperatures.
Undesirable air movement, whether in the basement or the rest of the house, is a sure recipe for wasting energy and wasting money. This is why it’s important to make a meaningful investment when insulating the basement. In fact, basement insulation is particularly important if the space is being used as living space – it will make for a comfortable environment right around the year.
Unlike other parts of the home, basements are cold and damp. This is because the exterior walls absorb underground temperatures on all sides of the building structure. More importantly, when there is no discernable barrier between the interior and exterior, coldness and dampness will intrude. The unfortunate result: an unpleasant and uncomfortable indoor living environment.
By any measure, insulating a basement will be an expense, especially when the project work is done right, with high-grade products, and a professional approach. But it’s an investment – and in the long run, the savings on heating and cooling will “pay down” the original cost of the project in a short period of time. This is one of the most important reasons for insulating the basement.
Beyond the annual savings on winter heating and summer cooling, a well insulated home is more attractive to a prospective buyer, when it comes time to sell the property. A finished basement that is dry and comfortable provides added living space and therefore added value. In addition, a well-insulated basement, when done properly, is more fire resistant than a non-insulated space.
When it comes to insulation products, many professionals are emphasizing the need to create an airtight space. Clearly, this would be a high priority for an area like the basement, given the need to control air movement and moisture movement. As such, more and more insulation contractors are recommending Spray Foam Insulation as the ideal application for spaces like the basement.
Spray Foam Insulation does everything in one install: it seals the basement airtight; it creates an effective air barrier and vapour barrier; and it insulates the entire space with very high R-Values. In fact, Spray Foam Insulation provides more product benefits than any comparable installation on the market. It’s a high performance insulation product that outlasts and outperforms others.
In short, insulating the basement should be viewed as a cost/benefit project for a typical property owner. Yes - there’s a significant upfront cost – but there’s also substantial long term savings.