While Tigger was away we have been taking the opportunity to do some stuff around the house. We’ve done a bit of painting which brings my kitchen that much closer to being completely in the new colour scheme (last installment was about a year ago. there are two walls to go, both with big windows in them). We also painted the basement bathroom which I figured needed doing if we are going to rent that room this year. And an electrician came and took a look at the stuff we wanted doing to make it possible for the lodger to cook basic stuff themselves down there.
But the big job we started was insulating the basement. This was recommended by our energy audit as the single most effective thing we could do to make our house more energy efficient. We’ve only done this corner so far and, as you can see, it isn’t finished. We want to electrician to put a plug socket there because the workbench is going to go there when it’s done.
As per the instructions we were given, we have 1.5" rigid foam insulation right against the concrete walls (it also acts as a vapour barrier). then we’ve framed up a stud wall and will put that pink fibreglass stuff in there. It needs to be covered with drywall for fire safety purposes but we’re not finishing that more than necessary for that purpose. The ceiling is less than 7′ so it really isn’t suitable for a finished basement room or anything. There are also some supporting beams and ductwork that make parts of it even lower.
The finished part of our basement (which we plan to rent this year) is part of an extension built in the mid-’80s so it has a lower floor and thus higher ceiling. The part we are insulating is under the original house (a 23′ square box with a triangle roof, just like little kids draw) and is used mainly for storage. The furnace is sort of behind and to the left of the photographer in that picture above.
So once the electrician comes and does what needs doing, we’ll finish this and then put the workbench and some storage for wood and stuff in that corner. Then we can repurpose the corner where that stuff currently is and maybe insulate that wall (though maybe not this summer, we’ll see). The idea is that if we do it one section at a time, we can move all the stuff out of the way. The logistics of doing the whole job at once are just too awful to contemplate.