How to insulate unfinished space?


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Old 02-11-23, 06:54 AM
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How to insulate unfinished space?

Had our basement professionally finished recently. There remains 200sqft of unfinished space with bare concrete walls (utility room, storage). Those wall got pretty cold when it was -20C outside recently. I was thinking of covering them with 2" foamboard but it looks like that is against code (no exposed foamboard allowed). Any other simple options?
 
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Old 02-11-23, 08:03 AM
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The foam is fine if you put a layer of drywall over it. The other common option is to frame up walls and put insulation in the stud bays.
 
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Old 02-11-23, 08:06 AM
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Foam panels with a fire-rated surface are also available. Maybe not 2 inch but you could cover 1 inch normal with a 1 inch fire-rated panel.
 
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Old 02-11-23, 10:57 AM
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For my unfinished space, I built walls with 24" studs, insulated and covered with Tyvek!
 
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Old 02-11-23, 05:00 PM
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Canada has pretty strict codes for how to insulate and finish basement walls... such as how much r value is required, what type, where the vapor barrier goes, etc. From what i understand, they do not permit just fiberglass and stud walls.

If you are just looking to keep it simple and just put up some insulation in your unfinished rooms, the type you want (and is what 2john02458 referred to) is called Thermax... and the seams get foil taped. You likely would want a minimum of 2" for starters.
 
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Old 02-11-23, 07:25 PM
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Thanks all. I did find info on the Thermax material but from what I can gather it is near impossible to find in small quantities. Any other readily available products?

XSleeper,

I am new to all this but was under the impression that Canada is way behind when it comes to codes for basement insulation. Doesn't the code still recommend vapor "barrier" between drywall and studs/insulation, despite pretty much everyone saying it is the wrong thing to do?

On a side note, can Sonopan be left exposed? The inside walls from the furnace could use a layer of this to help reduce noise to those sleeping in the basement. Don't really care to drywall over it inside a furnace room. The website of Sonopan tries to answer this question but is ambiguous IMO.
 
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Old 02-11-23, 07:58 PM
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Sonopan is not fire rated, so if it is installed in a location that requires a fire barrier, it would need to be covered too.
 
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Old 02-13-23, 12:24 AM
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Thermax seemed like the only simple 1-layer option until I looked through the NBC building codes. The wording suggests that ANY type of foam insulation has to be covered in Canada. Doesn't matter what the fire rating is. This is due to toxic furmes and not the flame spread rate.

The fine print from Dow seems to confirm this:

". In the USA THERMAX™ Sheathing can be installed exposed to the interior without a thermal barrier. In Canadian construction THERMAX™ exposed to the interior must be covered with a thermal barrier."

So I think I will just do nothing. Not interested in framing, insulating, and finishing inside a furnace or storage room.

P.S - Pretty much every new build home I've been through here in Ontario leaves exposed insulation in the basements. Mostly blanket wrap. Not sure how that works relative to the codes?
 
 

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