The useful extra space found in the basement is often rendered useless because of basement water problems. The basement can’t even safely be used for storage, let alone as living space, if it periodically floods. Some of the factors that cause basement water problems are quite simple to remedy, while others require a great deal of digging and work.
If you’ve ever noticed that musty smell in the basement, the reason is basement mold. Not only is that moldy basement smell unpleasant – it’s also unhealthy. Basement mold can cause people to have headaches, respiratory problems, and feel tired. It’s been named the number one cause of chronic sinus infections. It’s particularly bad for children with asthma.
Have you been putting off finishing a basement but have recently turned over a new leaf and are now ready to get down to it? If so, here are some things you might want to consider as you plot and plan and actually begin finishing a basement that could add great living space you will enjoy for years.
The first thing to take into account when planning on finishing a basement entails water issues. If your basement feels damp and uncomfortable due to water drainage problems, leaky pipes, or some other reason, you first want to get to the bottom of it.
Providing adequate basement ventilation makes not only for a more comfortable environment, but promotes all around good health, as well. Here are some tips on getting the proper amount of basement ventilation to not only satisfy most local building codes, but to make your and your family’s time spent in that living space a healthy and enjoyable place to be.
If the grade level permits, make sure you install plenty of operable windows to produce basement ventilation. Even if they’re small, install as many as permissible along the upper walls. During times of the year when the weather permits, you’ll be able to get lots of basement ventilation simply by opening the windows, in addition to welcome sunlight.
Builders tend to tackle the job of insulating basement walls the same way they insulate a home’s walls that exist in the upper walls of the house – by framing interior walls with fiberglass batts. If dampness exists and this material becomes wet, the basement walls’ ability to dry out becomes much more difficult – if not impossible – than if the walls had remained bare cement.
Of course, wisely insulating basement walls really begins during home construction. Builders thinking ahead this far make sure the grade of the property slopes away from the foundation of the house, and that guttering and downspouts divert rain away from it.