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Thursday, August 30, 2012

Adventures in the Basement: A Big Step!

As promised here is a bit of an update on Operation: Finish Basement!
(Click on the tab at the top of the page to follow our progress from the beginning) 
Last Saturday we had some great helpers and were able to take a big step. 
We poured a 10 X 10 area of the new floor of the basement! 
This area is going to be the laundry and utility room in the basement. We poured it before the rest of the floor because we are going to move the washer and dryer to their new spots (so I can continue to do laundry) and set up the water heater. 
Before we could pour the concrete, there were several things that needed to be in place. You can see some of it in this picture below:
We laid and compacted a layer of gravel, then a water barrier (special black plastic) then insulation (the pink stuff), and then wire fencing with the pex pipe attached for the radiant heat we are installing. Previously our house has had forced air heat, but with the new basement floor, we are putting in radiant heating which means that hot water will flow through those orange pipes inside the concrete and heat the floor and that in turn will heat the air of the house. 
 We have a new appreciation for workers who lay concrete, as it is not easy to get smooth. We were more concerned with the slab being even and level than we were with smooth. We can always go back and add a layer of self leveling concrete to smooth out the top, or cover it with tile...
But I think Daniel did a pretty good job getting it smooth! Now we can stand in "the laundry room" and see how it will look for real! You might have noticed the wood around the edges. We made a 2 inch lip of concrete around the outside of the slab where the walls will be built. Here is the reason for this lip: the new sump pump pit, water heater, and floor drain are all located in the new laundry room. If any of the should malfunction, causing water to leak onto the floor, this lip will prevent water from getting into the rest of the finished basement by containing the water to the laundry room. 
Only 19 more footer sections left to dig and pour, and then the big dig for the interior area of the basement! 
We are hoping to get a few done this weekend (if there is not to much rain).
What are you doing over your Labor Day Weekend?


  1. What a wonderful improved to your home. The heating will be awesome. I grew up with basements in Illinois and it's really awesome when you can use them without worry of flooding, etc.

  2. Wow ~ what a huge undertaking! Looks like you are doing a great job and accomplishing so much :)

  3. Wow, you are brave to do that all yourselves without hiring anyone - I'm impressed! I can't wait to see how far you get this weekend :)

  4. That basement will change your life when it's done. We don't have one at our new place and I really miss it. Vicky from