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Old 06-11-2016, 05:22 PM
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Default Colorado Man Cave

*PICTURES IN THIRD POST!*

Hey guys, loooong time lurker. We just bought a house in Colorado with about 800 sq feet of basement. It's very open and has the furnace/water heater off to the side next to a crawl space (a very large one. great for storage). I'll update this thread with some pictures later when I catch some time, but for now my plans are to make this space into a bedroom with attached bathroom, and also an open area where I can setup my previous homes home theater gear (120" screen, projector, 5.1 surround, etc). I'll update some specs in a bit, and see what you guys think. Concerns I have so far..

1.) The basement is pre-insulated with insulation/vapor barrier style insullation I believe (pictures later). It's been installed for 12 years (house built in 2003). I think its ok to go ahead and frame over it and everything but thoughts on this?

2.) The rough in plumbing for the bathroom is already in, but in one end of the basement, and I'm not certain on what piping goes to what. (again, pictures in a bit)

3.) Code. Being in Colorado means I believe I have to build floating walls throughout for expansion. I think I also have to build at least 30" around the furnace/waterheater for maintenance and all that when I make a "utility closet" sort of deal.

I'll be doing most of the work myself (or at least I think I will, haha) but that might prove rough and I may contract some of it out.

Last edited by nerd; 06-11-2016 at 06:33 PM.. Reason: Pictures Added
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Old 06-11-2016, 06:11 PM
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Default Re: Colorado Man Cave

Welcome!

If you have been lurking you know that pics of the wifey must go along with pics of the work......................................just saying!

(Look at that first post and I got in the request for wife pics!!!! Quads will be sooooo proud!)
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Old 06-11-2016, 06:18 PM
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Default Re: Colorado Man Cave

We just moved in 5 months ago, so still have a lot of house projects going on. Also, my "blueprint" is VERY off scale lol, MS Paint for the win. Anyway thats what I"m working with. Also, my wife would be VERY upset if I posted her picture on a public forum. So you'll just have to assume she's a very foxy lady (and believe me she is) =D















The last picture is a quick little paint doc I did up. Orange is stuff I'd like to add. Open to suggestions!

Last edited by nerd; 06-11-2016 at 06:25 PM..
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Old 06-11-2016, 06:31 PM
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Default Re: Colorado Man Cave

Stuff I've already done.

When we moved in, the prior owners had a lot of cats down here (in the crawl space too). So it smelled super bad. Cleaned/deodorized the concrete and then use zinser BINS on the entire floor (3 coats). Also had the entire crawl space re-encapsulated as well as the vents sealed and vapor barriers on the concrete replaced. No more cat smell! =D

-Had the entire HVAC system professionally cleaned
-Crudely wired up a network setup with a switch i had laying around so I could get my nerd station up and running
-Laid down some carpets to add to the feng shui XD
-Added some dude furniture to make it a decent chill spot until all the work is complete
-Went through and resealed all the holes/cuts in the insulation with white vapor barrier tape
-Fixed a foundation leak under the 2nd window with appropriate concrete foundation sealant
-Added some mildly sexist man cave signs

Looking for some pointers and such as I haven't done any major construction in probably 13 years or so. (Working for my dad during the summers when I was still in highschool). Thanks guys!
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Old 06-11-2016, 08:52 PM
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Default Re: Colorado Man Cave

Welcome to the forum, nice space to work with.

Do you know what type of insulation is on the walls? Kinda looks like blanket insulation, which sometime leads to mildew/odor problems because you've got the insulation against the concrete, followed by the vapor barrier. Ideally you want your vapor barrier against the concrete to stop the moisture before it hits the insulation and prevent mold/mildew. Check out the article below for an explanation of why:

Understanding Basements | Building Science Corporation
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Old 06-11-2016, 09:08 PM
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Default Re: Colorado Man Cave

Quote:
Originally Posted by Irish View Post
Welcome to the forum, nice space to work with.

Do you know what type of insulation is on the walls? Kinda looks like blanket insulation, which sometime leads to mildew/odor problems because you've got the insulation against the concrete, followed by the vapor barrier. Ideally you want your vapor barrier against the concrete to stop the moisture before it hits the insulation and prevent mold/mildew. Check out the article below for an explanation of why:

Understanding Basements | Building Science Corporation
Ah nice! Its definitely the one side vapor barrier stuff. The insulation is against concrete. So what would you recommend? tearing it all out and putting new stuff down? it looks like its secured with concrete nails and plugs ( I don't know the correct names).

I'm trying to keep this project as low money wise as possible, which i know is going to be an undertaking because of the bathroom and all that. I'd be tickled if I could keep it below 15k though. Is that a pipedream?
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Old 06-12-2016, 02:45 PM
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Default Re: Colorado Man Cave

I have heard good things about the rigid foam/styrofoam that gets glued to the concrete walls (as long as you seal the joints I believe it also acts as a vapor barrier). Then you put the 2x4 framing over that, with fiberglass insulation between studs for more insulation (details should be in that article I linked above). That's what I'm planning to do when I eventually refinish my basement. I've personally seen cases slightly different that yours, where the 2x4 wall was built with fiberglass insulation, then the vapor barrier, than sheetrock. That resulted in a ton of mold behind the sheetrock. I haven't seen these blanket insulation systems installed around here so I can't comment on their effectiveness, but unless the insulation is a special type of mold/mildew resistant material, it's the same principle.

Effectiveness of a system may also vary by how much rain/moisture you get in your area. Here in NJ we usually have really wet springs and then hot, humid summers, so the moisture in a basement area is very high. Maybe check in with some contractors in your area (or just some other homeowners) to see if this type of system is typical or if anyone else has had problems with it.
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Old 06-12-2016, 04:39 PM
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Default Re: Colorado Man Cave

That could potentially be why the builder saw this as a viable option. its sunny 300+ days a year in Denver, and its very very dry most of the time. That said, i would still like to ensure my investment isn't wasted, so I'll do some more research and see.

Does anyone have any thoughts as to if I should do a 3/4 bath or a 1/2 bath downstairs? I'm starting to lean towards half bath, given the house already has 2 other full bathrooms upstairs, and I don't think a 3rd shower is really necessary, but I don't know.
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Old 06-12-2016, 08:39 PM
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Default Re: Colorado Man Cave

Regarding insulation, if you're thinking of replacing the stuff in the walls, do yourself a favor and check out Roxul. Its generic name is Mineral Wool insulation. It's made from rock fibres. It's fireproof, won't rot, won't mildew, and has a better R value than fibreglass. They have some for insulating ceilings/floors for sound too.

It's really easy to work with too. It cuts with an old bread knife and holds itself between studs.

I used it in my garage and basement ceiling. If my walls weren't already done, I definitely would have used it there too.

I'm sure Roxul isn't the only brand out there. But it's the brand I know.
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Old 06-13-2016, 06:04 AM
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Default Re: Colorado Man Cave

where in Colorado? Im in fort collins...
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