Before: “Absolutely awful”, wet, moldy, stinky (think giant litter box, the previous cats did), leaky, dark, and dangerous (asbestos duct work) are just a few of the adjectives that apply. It is half crawl space with dirt floor, half standing head room basement with a wet and cracked concrete slab.
The goal was to clean it out, dry it up, tighten it up, insulate to R-20, and make it a useable basement and storage area. Basements in tight homes must be as dry as possible to avoid condensation and mold problems. Radon, although not a problem in this home, must also be eliminated.
A very tough moisture barrier (Emeshield) was laid down and very carefully sealed to be air, radon, and moisture tight over dirt crawl space and concrete floor. The barrier was extended up the concrete block foundation wall and sealed to the sill. Then, 5 inches of open cell spray foam (R-20) was professionally applied to the rim joist, sills, and down 4 feet of the foundation wall over the moisture barrier. On the concrete slab, pressure treated strapping every 16 inches was laid, covered and sealed with the same moisture barrier, and then toped with water resistant composite sheeting forming a “raised floor.” Any water collecting in the basement can then drain by gravity under the moisture barrier to the sump drain. Moisture in the basement is now 40% down from 80% prior to remodel.