What to Do Before Finishing Your Basement

A basement is a wonderful, cozy, multipurpose space. At least, it is if it’s finished. But many homes come with basements that are pretty bare bones: cement walls, cement floors, poor lighting, damp air, etc. It’s understandable as a homeowner to be eager to get things finalized so you can start utilizing the space. 

But before you do that, there a few important steps to take and items to consider. 

Protect Against Flooding 

Basements, even newer ones, can be at risk of flooding. Before you start placing new and expensive items down there, make sure you’re protected. Check for cracks in walls. Inspect gutters outside. Install a sump pump, if necessary. Any machines down there, such as water heaters and washing machines, should be inspected for leaks. 

If you’re still seeing water getting into your basement, make sure the ground around your home isn’t sloping towards your house. 

Control Moisture 

Even if you have your basement safe from flooding, moisture can still get down there. Purchasing a dehumidifier is a great way to help control that, but it’s not the only thing you can do. If you’re covering up pipes with new walls and panels, you may want to insulate them first to help against condensation. You may also want to avoid traditional drywall, which can easily attract mold in damp locations 

Instead, purchase non-paper alternatives that are mold and moisture resistant.  If you due use drywall, use a wood frame with foam insulation that creates separation between the foundation walls and the drywall. 

Consider Soundproofing the Ceiling 

If you’re planning on using your basement for entertainment (or as a place to tuck away your children), a little sound reduction can go a long way.  

Adding some soundproof insulation above the ceiling tiles can make a big difference in cutting down both airborne and impact noise. The same goes for acoustic panels, though even some fluffy rugs and carpet can do a pretty good job. Lastly, make sure doors and windows are properly sealed. 

Check to See if a Permit is Needed 

When making major renovations in and around your home, it never hurts to check with the city inspector. Depending on what you’re having done, you may need a permit. If electric and plumbing are involved, you’ll likely need to have an inspector come. 

Check for Radon 

While radon is a common element found in almost all air, it can be dangerous at high levels. In fact, the EPA estimates that radon causes over 200,000 deaths from lung cancer every year. Nearly 1 in 15 homes have excess radon. If you’re home has a basement, that’s likely where radon levels are the highest. 

That’s not to say radon only affects homes with basements. It can also seep through slab foundations, as well as crawlspaces.  

Whether you havea basement or not, if your home hasn’t been tested for radon, it’s very important that you have it tested immediately. For radon mitigation in Springfield, Ohio and the surrounding cities, contact Air Duct Cleaning & Radon Company today! 

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