Spacious empty basement with laundry

What are the Common Causes of a Cold Basement?

Basements often have a different temperature than the rest of your house because of moisture, an inefficient heating distribution. It also does not help that it is located beneath your house.

Homeowners should consider these factors especially when they plan to renovate their basements. Refinishing will require you to resolve the moisture and temperature issues before you could begin with the project.

Poor Insulation and Moisture

Despite not having active sources of moisture, basements could still be a damp area if you do not waterproof it. Add the humid air to moisture and you will not only have a cold temperature inside, but also problems with mold and mildew growth. This usually happens when the basement foundation walls have been consistently exposed to at least 20% of relative humidity. You could find out the actual rate of indoor humidity by purchasing a test kit.

Poor insulation on the ground floor also serves as another factor why you have a cold basement. Air ducts or vents are often the culprits, as this transfer the chilly air below the ground through walls that extend above these fixtures. An HVAC contractor should look into your system to avoid having cold air flowing into the basement after a renovation.

Myths and Misconceptions

Some common misconceptions about cold basements are related to the outdoor temperature. You would instantly think that your basement already became cold when it starts to snow, but this will not happen unless it piles up to more than two feet outside on the ground near the basement’s walls.

In fact, this might remain the same even after spring has arrived since basement temperatures do not adapt to outside temperature quickly. Some studies have shown that the exterior base of its foundation wall could take almost 70 days before it could reflect the temperature outside. In other words, your basement could remain cold even when it is already the middle of spring.

Finishing Your Basement

empty basment with stone and brick wall interiors

Take note of the delay in temperature changes in your basement when remodeling it. Homeowners who use drywall panels should consider framing and insulating the exterior walls, but do this only when you are sure that the basement is dry. If you live in Utah, drywall contractors in Salt Lake City may charge at least $1.5 per square foot of installation.

The actual price will greatly rely on the size of the basement. For instance, you should expect to spend between $480 and $720 to install a dozen panels for an average 12×12 room. The type of drywall finish level and texture will also affect the total cost. There are five common kinds from a Level 0 to a Level 5 finish. Ask the contractor about the best type that may help with insulation for your basement.

An efficient heating cycle will be important to maintain an ideal temperature in your basement, which saves money on utility bills since a cold basement will take some time before it becomes warm. Consult a professional if you still cannot determine the exact causes.


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