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Insulating the basement ceiling: little effort, great effect
Insulating the basement ceiling: little effort, great effect

Video: Insulating the basement ceiling: little effort, great effect

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If you insulate your basement ceiling, you not only prevent cold feet, but also save a lot of energy - at least around ten percent. And: Compared to the roof structure, it is an easy undertaking to insulate the basement ceiling. Here we show you how it's done.

If you have not properly insulated your basement ceiling, you can expect cooled rooms and cold floors. The cold moves through cracks in the living area above and heat is lost. Furthermore, the heating cost calculation increases due to poorly insulated floors or incorrectly insulated basement ceilings. The equivalent of twelve liters of heating oil per year is lost over one square meter of uninsulated floor. If you insulate the concrete or wooden beam ceiling on the ground floor from below with 80 mm thick slabs, you may save so much in a fully basemented, average-sized house that the investment will pay off in just a few years - after all, the insulation material costs per Square meters only 15 to 25 euros. After careful examination of your house, an expert can make more precise calculations of how much energy you can save by insulating your basement ceiling.

The ideal insulation material for the basement ceiling

Special boards made of rock wool or insulating boards made of polystyrene hard foam are suitable for insulation, which are glued or dowelled to the basement ceiling. It should be noted here that no holes or gaps remain free. Insulation boards are available in various sizes and thicknesses from 60 to 120 millimeters. Before buying, measure the height of the lintel in the basement. When choosing the appropriate insulation thickness, you must ensure that the windows can still be opened easily.

If there are no special fire protection requirements for your basement, insulation boards made of rigid polystyrene foam are best for insulating the basement ceiling. You can easily anchor these multi-layer panels in the ceiling. You can get basement insulation boards of this type in the hardware store from around 25 euros per square meter.

Pure mineral wool or hard foam boards are cheaper to buy. These plates have no further plate coating. You do not necessarily have to dowel the insulation boards in the ceiling, you can just glue them on. The problem with this method is that it doesn't always hold up well, and it often turns out to be more difficult to glue than to peg. Pipes on the ceiling in particular make work more difficult because many panels have to be cut to size. You can get this type of insulation board for just 15 euros per square meter.

Insulate the basement ceiling step by step

Before you start, you need to make sure that the ceiling is stable, firm, and dry. First remove dirt and paint residues from the ceiling; you should level out any unevenness with a leveling compound. To determine the center of the room, mark the diagonals. It is best to use a chalk line for this. Then start laying the insulation boards in the middle of the room. In order to attach the plates straight, you should draw lines. If you want to plaster the ceiling later, you can also start from one side - preferably from one of the longer ones, of course.

Diagonalen anreißen
Diagonalen anreißen

Mark the diagonals of the room to determine the center of the basement ceiling.

Photo: Kirchner / The house

Installation of the insulation boards

Lighter panels can simply be glued to the ceiling using special assembly adhesive. You have to anchor heavy plates in the ceiling with dowels or concrete screws. If you are not sure, ask the manufacturer directly how their panels are properly fixed. Lay the first row of insulation boards against the line and press firmly against the ceiling. The next row is shifted and laid tightly. Press them down with a clean float.

Dämmplatten anbringen
Dämmplatten anbringen

Install the rows of insulation boards offset.

Photo: Kirchner / The house

How are the edges insulated?

The problem with walls is that they are never at right angles. Therefore, adapt the remaining pieces: Hold a plate underneath and draw it on. Then cut the rest with a long knife.

Reststücke einpassen
Reststücke einpassen

Remnants have to be fitted because the walls are often not quite at right angles to each other.

Photo: Kirchner / The house

Painting the insulated basement ceiling

Finally, you can embellish the finished, insulated ceiling with mineral plaster and paint. You can also save yourself the plastering by simply buying white coated panels.

Kellerdecke verputzen
Kellerdecke verputzen

After you have attached the insulation panels, you can plaster the ceiling.

Photo: Kirchner / The house

Renovation of basement walls

You can also reduce heating costs by renovating the basement walls. It is only more complex, because seepage or groundwater, frost blasting, fungi, algae or roots can cause cracks in the foundation walls and penetrating water can have dampened the basement walls. The only effective protection is then to seal the basement wall from the outside. Here the masonry is first exposed, then the plaster is checked and renewed and finally a protective barrier layer or a bitumen coating is applied.

If the basement is to be used as a living, working or hobby room, a foundation wall protection seal from the outside is essential. Particularly suitable here are sealing slurries, which are applied in several layers, as well as other coatings and coatings that close the pores in the wall. They prevent precipitation from entering the basement during prolonged rain. Bitumen rubber and latex paints are often used, which are applied up to seven millimeters thick and seal the foundation against water in accordance with the standards. Additional thermal insulation, for example with perimeter insulation, saves heating costs. It is simply placed in front of the sealing layer and glued in place with bitumen.

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