Latest Discussions : Basement & Foundation

Richard Diaz

01:01PM | 12/07/01
Member Since: 12/06/01
2 lifetime posts
I want to finish my basement and use DRYLOK on the walls(to seal for moisture), 2x4's, fiberglass insulation (is kraft face insulation considered a vapor barrier?), and drywall or paneling to finish my walls. For the floor, I would also like to use DRYLOK (or a similiar product) on the floor (to also prevent moisture), then a moisture proof padding and either finish with carpet or laminated flooring. My house is in Illinois, is new construction ( 8 months old) and I notice a little bit of moisture on the floor in the hot summer months, but I run a dehumidifier in the summer to keep my basement dry. I would be thankful for any help

Jay J

06:49AM | 12/09/01
Member Since: 10/26/00
782 lifetime posts
Hi Richard,

LOTS going on here! First, if your basement walls are ALWAYS dry, then Drylok should be find. However, if there are times where you actually see wetness or water, the Drylok won't last.

As for 2 x 4s, be sure to use Pressure Treated lumber on the floor parts of your framing.

Assuming you DON'T have any moisture problems, Kraft-faced insulation is just fine. Yes, it's considered a vapor barrier.

Drywall or anything for sheathing is fine too.

RE: The floor - You need to do a test first. Assuming you don't have any wet spots, ever, get yourself a sheet of plastic about 2' x 2' (clear plastic is best.) Duct-tape ALL 4 sides down COMPLETELY sealing the edges. Wait 2-3 days. If you see moisture dropplets on the underside of the plastic, I wouldn't seal. You'd have the same problem as you would on the walls - The drylok wouldn't last. Let the floor breath.

Use a padding that can breath. I suggest you install a flooring that is NOT glued in any way to the concrete. 1) It may not last, and 2) some day if you decide to remove it, the glue won't come off (for the most part.) I suggest you use a Berber-style carpeting.

I'd still use the dehumidifier. Hopefully, it's a unit that doesn't empty into a 'bucket' but, instead, empties into a sump pump pit or floor drain. (This way, you don't have to worry about the 'bucket' filling up, and such.) These days, assuming the basement is fairly dry, you're encouraged to let it breath. Let the moisture into the space and remove it via a dehumidifier. It's not unusual to have 'dummy vents' that install in your finished wall to allow moisture behind it into the space. Remember, it gets removed w/the dehumidifier. I'd install the framing a few inches from the wall too. Then, you could consider using a higher R-valued insulation for 2 x 6 wall.

Look into buying a book on How TO Finish A Basement. SPend some of the $$$ you're saving by doing this work yourself on a good book. It WILL be money well spent. My best to ya and hope this helps.

Jay J -Moderator

PS: God BLess America!

Richard Diaz

05:20PM | 12/09/01
Member Since: 12/06/01
2 lifetime posts
I thought DRYLOK was a water proof sealer (so my thinking is to seal the whole basement)? Next question, should I use a vapor barrier on the floor, before the padding, and should I use a moisture proof pad or normal padding, please be specific.I understand letting it breath, but what about water protection? What are some of the titles of books, you are talking about?

Jay J

04:05AM | 12/10/01
Member Since: 10/26/00
782 lifetime posts
Hi Richard,

Well, let me be a bit clearer about the Drylok. There are Dampproofing materials and there are Waterproofing materials. Just make sure your product will do what you want it to do. These are 2, totally different materials. Call or write Drylok about the product you need. But do remember this - You may not be able to totally stop water/moisture from entering your basement. Water will travel to the path of least resistance. What you should do in addition to Drylok (if you do anything) is evaluate the EXTERIOR foundation. You need slopeage AWAY from the foundation, you need extended downspouts 3'+ away from the foundation, you need to remove any water that pools on the ground near the foundation, you need gutters where the water flows INTO them and not over, or behind, them, you need gutters on rooflines that allow water to run off of them, and you need to have a 'clear' run around the entire foundation to allow air and sun to dry out the ground after a rain. The next time a heavy rain is predicted, don your hat and coat and take a walk around the ENTIRE house and look down AND UP! See where the water is running, and correct any 'problems'.

RE: Padding - Berber doesn't require padding as you know it. If you decide to use 'regular carpeting', I'd get a padding that's resistant to moisture damage. I'm not a carpet expert but you're not the first person to finish a basement w/moisture 'issues'.

There is SOOOOOO much info out there to help you w/this job. is just one place to begin. You should go to your favorite WEB Search Engine and key in the search-string: finishing a basement, you'll get HUNDREDS of 'hits' that talk about that.

Here are just a couple of hits that might help you: Basement Improvements And there's Basement Projects. And more, Basement Remodeling. Do you need more???

My best to ya and hope this helps.

Jay J -Moderator

PS: Just be SURE the book(s) you choose talks about moisture mitigation and such ...

PPS: God Bless America!


02:14AM | 12/11/01
Member Since: 10/19/98
223 lifetime posts
I just reread your post. The moisture you saqw last summer could very well have been nothing more than the concrete curing. When our house was built nine years ago, the builder ran a dehumifdifier for several months for that very reason.

I'd wait at least a full year in a new house before finishing the basement. At this point you haven't lived through the spring rains. Wait until you see how dry the basement is this spring. If you continue to see as much moisture as you did last summer, you have issues that drylock will only fix for a few years (just my opinion). The only long term waterproofing is done on the outside.


12:50AM | 02/02/02
Member Since: 02/01/02
2 lifetime posts
Richard, I took a similar path as you're taking.
Drylok on walls, as well as drylok floor sealer for floors.
Walls are 2x4 with P.T. on floors. I spaced the ext. walls ~2" from the foundation and insulated with Miraflex. (R-13 walls, R-25 ceiling)
For the floors, I finally decided that even with the Drylok, there's always the possibility of water getting in (biblical rains, burst water heater,...) so I just put down 6lb synthetic padding (which allows moisture to breathe thru, and rolled out a berber carpet, which I had cut & edge-bound to measure. No tack strips, nothing fixed down, so if there ever is water I just roll up the carpet and take it out to dry.
Good luck.


05:50PM | 04/14/05
Member Since: 04/11/05
2 lifetime posts
Hi, I am curious about the miraflex as far as installation in a basement ceiling. I need to reduce the sound in my basement and am looking for something other than fiberglass to use in the basement ceiling. If someone has used this product in their basement ceiling please let me know how this worked out for you. Also is there any fiberglass or harmful stuff in it?

thanks, Kava


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