Finished basements / Guides

Better Basement Design on basement walls prevents mold and midlew
Healthy indoor air quality

Basement renovations: How to prevent mold when finishing basements

...basements were finished for the last few decades is about as logical as jogging in a raincoat. Above grade, walls are designed to dry to the exterior. That is impossible below grade, but for some reason we still build as if it were. Despite the fact that interior vapour barriers in below grade wall assemblies are com...

Slab on grade or a foundation and basement?
Foundation choices

Choosing between a slab-on-grade or a foundation and basement

...basements altogether and choosing to build a slab-on-grade instead. Concrete foundations - pros & cons: For a modest sized home, a concrete foundation will cost you easily between $20,000 and $30,000 . Factor in a subfloor and finished flooring, you’ll be lucky to stay under $40,000. Building basements ‘just becaus...

Exterior damp proofing and drainage mat to protect basements from wate
Insulation and soundproofing

Best practices for basement insulation in new home construction

...Basements Flooding - Flood Prevention, Pumps & Alarms here Slab floors: A large portion of heat is lost to poorly insulated basements, including below slab floors. The optimum levels of insulation below slabs varies by region and climate, but also by individual building site and soil conditions. To save both mon...

Radon Mitigation - Installing a radon evacuation stack in a slab floor
Radon in Homes - Mitigation

Mitigating radon gas in homes

...basements & crawlspaces: Removing radon from basements & crawlspaces is easier if prevented rather than cured, and existing homes that are found to have high levels of Radon should look at mitigation asap. Depending on the state of your basement and or crawlspace, there will be varying degrees of difficulty in mitiga...

Slab-on-grade construction technical guide
Slab on Grade

Slab-on-grade technical guide

...Basements can also be susceptible to Radon gas infiltration , so to learn how to prevent Radon gas levels being high in homes, see here - or to specifically find out how to remove Radon gas form basements and crawl spaces, see here . Health, durability and comfort: Despite how common finished basements are, there i...

Why basements flood and how to prevent that with a sump pump
Basements improvements

Why Basements Flood & How to Prevent Flooded Basements

...basements is very common and most times can be easily avoided. Why basements flood in the first place is pretty easy to answer – it’s a hole in the ground and the ground is wet! Basements are sometimes below the water table to begin with, but water tables rise during the spring snow melt, and without proper basement dr...

Finished basements can lead to mold and mildew
Healthy indoor air quality

Why are basements moldy? How to fix or Prevent a Moldy Basement

...basements especially in relation to the best insulation types to choose for basements. Better basement insulation techniques: The materials and design you choose are very important to prevent mold and should be appropriate for the environment they are destined to inhabit. Be very careful how and where you install w...

Non-toxic building materials can improve home air quality
Healthy indoor air quality

Maintaining healthy indoor air quality

...basements finished or not can have a distinct musty smell that indicates a problem. It’s important to determine the source of moisture so that the problem can be addressed. It can often be due to insufficient insulation resulting in condensation, improper vapour seals, or water in bathrooms and kitchens not bei...

Why Radon maps by state or province shouldn't replace testing

Radon Levels by State & Province - Why a Radon Test is Essential

...basements and crawlspaces, which radon mitigation system is best depends on how high your levels are, how finished your basement is and whether or not you use it as living space. The only really easy DIY Radon mitigation technique is for crawlspaces or basements with dirt floors , where a passive radon stack can be l...

Tips for finding a reliable green home builder
How to Find Qualified Green Building Professionals

How to choose a home-building contractor

...basements smell mouldy? The answers you receive will quickly indicate the type of builder you are speaking with; either they will redirect, dismiss or dodge the question, or they will answer with confidence. If you are told any of the following – ‘you want your walls to breath’ , ‘you don’t want a house to be too a...

Crawlspace radon barrier installation for radon mitigation
Radon in Homes - Mitigation

Removing radon gas from basements and crawlspaces

...finished basements: The dedicated HRV system mentioned above is also an option for removing radon gas from unfinished basements, as is sub-slab depressurization. If you have extremely high levels and the HRV isn’t sufficient and you also are not able to do sub-slab depressurization, you can pour an additional concret...