A Better Basement Finishing Foundation

You might think its strange to discuss foundations in a basement finishing article. Your foundation was already constructed with your house right?

Yes, that is correct, but the foundation we’re going to discuss has nothing to do with the foundation holding your house up. Of course, a basement finishing project doesn’t have a foundation in the traditional sense of the word, but nonetheless, the concept of starting with a strong foundation still applies.

In this case, the strong foundation we’re talking about is the framing that will be the basis for every other part of the basement finishing project. As more and more fly-by-night contractors have entered the market, we’ve noticed some disturbing trends in basement framing.

The first is the use of 2×3 and 2×2 studs instead of the traditional 2×4 studs. The second is the practice of spacing wall studs 24″ (or even more!) apart.

Quality Framing is the Foundation of Beautiful Basement Finishing Projects!

While on the surface this might seem like a good area to save some costs, you should be careful of any basement finishing contractor who wants to use these methods.

We affirm that 2×4 framing is vital to a quality basement finish. A 2×4 wall with wall studs spaced every 16″ will provide for a better, stronger wall, that is less likely to move and lead to future drywall cracks. This type of wall framing is also more consistent with the rest of the house and provides the framing depth needed for other building components (electrical, plumbing, insulation, etc.)

Additionally, the cavity depth that 2×4 wall framing provides is better for getting the full benefit of the insulation that will go into your walls and provide the comfort needed. With anything less than 2×4 framing, the insulation will crush and reduce the overall benefit of the insulation.

Ultimately, after your basement finishing contractor leaves, you are the one who will be enjoying the benefits (or cursing the shortcomings) of your basement. The vast majority of homeowners prefer a solid foundation (e.g. framing) in their basement finishing project because they don’t want to deal with drywall cracks down the road, and they want a more comfortable basement environment

And at the end of the day, don’t you deserve a better wall to a weaker one?

Building more…

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