The U.S. Department of Energy reports enormous savings from insulated basement walls. For example, picture a 1,500 square-foot home in the northwest U.S. that has a finished basement with R-10 insulation. If it's heated by natural gas (at $0.72/therm), a homeowner should save $400 every year with an R-10 insulation!
When selecting a basement wall product, it's very important that the basement wall product can be installed continuously across the entire sheet to keep the moisture and cold out. Any opening, and cold will literally pour in. However, that once the perimeter of the basement is insulated, it's no longer important to insulate closets, rooms, and wall partitions.
It's becoming increasingly common in the basement remodeling industry to establish standards for the minimum basement wall insulation needed when finishing the basement. Many states are adopting R-13 insulation as the industry standard, especially in northern states.
Unfortunately, most basement finishing products will not be able to meet these standards without additional insulation. The Georgia Environmental Facilities Authority [PDF] provides these R-ratings for common basement finishing products:
|Plywood with Exterior Glue||R-0.70|
|Vapor Barrier Paint or Primer||R-0.45|
|Drywall (painted with latex paint)||R-2-3|
|Fiberglass and cloth||R-11|
|Closed cell insulation with concrete board||R-13|
Of the new basement finishing products on the market, finished basement walls made of fiberglass and cloth have an R-rating of 11, but they can rarely be installed in an unbroken sheet on a basement wall. Additionally, they lack structure, making them a weak option for basement wall partitions and for supporting hanging objects such as shelving, heavy pictures, a plasma TV, or shelving. Additionally, cloth coverings tend to stain easily, absorb moisture from the basement wall, and these materials have no warranty against mold. Wood and drywall (even mold-resistant drywall) will also grow mold.
TBF closed cell foam insulation and concrete board basement wall products offer industry-leading R-13 insulation value that will reflect back 99.987% of heat back and lead to the optimal insulating of a basement area. Because of the closed cell hard board, they make solid, durable wall products that clean well and are perfect for reliable wall partitions. Additionally, TBF's EverLast Finished Basement Wall Panels, a hard foam and concrete board panel, have a 50-year warranty against mold and moisture even if the basement floods!
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