What insulation to use in basements / Guides

Slab on grade for a Passive Solar LEED Home insulated by Rockwool © Ecohome
Insulation and soundproofing

Insulating below slab-on-grade floors

...to save money, that's why! In many areas Building Code has fallen behind common sense on what specification of insulation to use under a slab , It is common to install as little as R5 insulation below slab floors, making that about the weakest point in a building envelope, as walls are generally at least R20 and ceilin...

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

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

...ing inspectors who are not accustomed to seeing a wall without a vapour barrier and may not allow you to continue. Radon gas prevention and remedial insulation in basements © Ecohome Note: the above diagram shows an ideal and complete basement renovation beginning with breaking and removing the existing concret...

Basement Design for walls prevents mold & midlew when renovating & finishing
Healthy indoor air quality

Basement renovations: How to prevent mold when finishing basements

...ing inspectors who are not accustomed to seeing a wall without a vapour barrier and may not allow you to continue. Radon gas prevention and remedial insulation in basements © Ecohome Note: the above diagram shows an ideal and complete basement renovation beginning with breaking and removing the existing concret...

Roxul mineral wool batt insulation in LEED Homes
Insulation and soundproofing

Choosing the right insulation: the pros, cons and applications for walls, slabs & basements

...installed against a cold concrete wall. See our pages on how to avoid or get rid of mold in basements for more on this. Rockwool mineral fiber insulation: Rock wool rigid board insulation © Ecohome Recycled Content : there is a minimum of 75% industrial waste in stone wool insulation, often as high as 90%...

Frost Heave Prevention Helps Stop Frost Heaving Breaking up Home Foundations
New foundations and slab-on-grade

What causes Frost Heave? Preventing frost heaving is down to good foundation design

...to pile dirt against the side of your house to stop it from tipping over. It’s just that dirt has always been used as insulation against frost heave, so it has been ingrained in us for centuries as essential. But, thanks to modern building practices, you can also useinsulation’ as insulation against frost heave! So...

$40k Interest-Free Loans for Green Home Renos, How to Apply Canada 2021
Grants and incentives

Greener Homes interest-free loan scheme 2021 Canada - the ultimate guide

...ing windows, but that is rarely going to offer a return on investment within your lifetime. It may cost 20K to replace old windows in a house, and you may only save 5k in energy over the life of the house, so don’t jump into that one too quick either. See here about when to replace windows and when to repair them , and...

Spray Foam Insulation - Is it Good or Toxic & Dangerous?
Insulation and soundproofing

Is spray foam insulation a good choice for your home? Or a toxic recipe for disaster?

...toxic soup of other ingredients in SPF wood. But it only takes adding 2% of something non-toxic to justify basing 100% of the marketing around it so people think their homes are insulated with something akin to tofu. A typical safe handling manual first page for spray foam insulation - not overly-reassuring I...

How to Build With Less Wood for Best Performance
Wood and organic materials

How to build high performance homes with less lumber

...involves 2x6s and fiberglass insulation batts. The reasoning behind that is less about snow loads and structural integrity, as much as it is about creating a deeper cavity to accommodate thicker insulation. Moving from 2x4 walls to 2x6 walls made it easier to meet the requirements of cold climate building codes as in...

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

Maintaining healthy indoor air quality

...in basements that is all too familiar is due to either poorly installed insulation , or having no insulation at all. Building below grade presents much greater challenges than above grade as walls cannot dry to the outside. Please see our pages on how to prevent mold in basements guide and basement insulation guide gui...

Passive home designer Harold Orr, one of the original high performance homes
Passive solar home design

The principal designer of the house that inspired the global Passivhaus movement reflects on the project that started it all.

...tors and equipment needed to achieve the same thing. Now let us look at some of the details of the house. Ceiling insulation: This is really easy - all you have to do is use high heel trusses for the roof and insulation stops at the eaves and you need to then blow lots of insulation into the attic. All blown insu...

Crawl Spaces or Slab on Grade Foundations?
Foundations and Basements

Slab on grade or crawlspaces, which is better?

...ing said that – a termite has no real incentive to dig into your insulation if there is no food source to attact them, so always build homes with durability strategies. If termites DO eat into your foam foundation, it would likely take an infestation of biblical proportions to remove enough insulation to cause a struct...