Home>Discussions>INTERIORS>Living Areas & Workspaces>Do I need insulation and a vapor barrier in a Wisconsin basement?
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jloesch
Do I need insulation and a vapor barrier in a Wisconsin basement?

I know this topic has been addressed before but I am throwing it out again, because I have seen answers for or against that have been don't use one with no further explaination or a link which I can't understand. I admitingly don't know and would appreciate an explaination that I can understand as a new DIYer with their first house.

My family and I bought our 1st house this spring and have had major water problems ever since. The water problems have recently been fixed by a reputable contractor and is warrantied for life for a small yearly fee, which of course don't mean it will never leak again just that I don't have to pay for it. Now I am focusing on redoing the finished basement. The walls were put together in every wrong way by the previous owner and need to be replaced. When I replace these should I install a plastic vapor barrier between the foundation walls and the studs, if so what, how thick? Or will this cause problems trapping potential moisture on the foundation walls and leading to mold? If so between the studs and concrete or between studs and sheet rock? Also should I install any insulation, if so what? Rigid insulation was removed from the outside of the walls during repairs (it was not replaced the foundation was sealed with mason's tar) there was none on the inside. We live in Wisconsin and I would anticipate heat loss in the winter but don't know yet. It is a poured foundation.

JLMCDANIEL
Re: Do I need insulation and a vapor barrier in a Wisconsin basement?

If it were me , I would use a moisture beareir, plastic sheeting.
I would use foil covered foam sheet insulation for several reasons.1) It will stay in place, it's ridgid enough to stand on it's own. 2) It will not hold or pass moisture 3)You will not have to heat up the concrete mass of the walls to keep the basement warm, after all the concrete still has earth that is @ 52º or less. Just my opinion.
Jack

goldhiller
Re: Do I need insulation and a vapor barrier in a Wisconsin basement?

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