Basement Project

Help Support House Repair Talk:

Sparky617

Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2014
Messages
1,707
Reaction score
631
Location
Cary NC
I pulled permits for my 1000 square foot walkout basement project earlier this year and had my first inspection on Tuesday. First the good news, my electrical passed and the inspector was very impressed with the quality of my work. Plumbing didn't pass, not due to what I've done, but due to what isn't done yet. Namely the shower pan. In order to pass my rough inspection I need to have the shower pan installed and leak tested. Without passing plumbing the framing inspection can't be signed off. If it weren't for the inspection need, no way would I be putting in a shower pan this early in my project. That would be an item for when I'm drywalling and preparing to tile a shower.

On the framing, overall it looked good. My new door opening is fine without an engineer's approval, same with an opening between two of the rooms under the gluelam beam that runs down the middle of the house. But, on framing, I need to install a bunch of blocking. I built a soffit box out around the room to handle the duct work and other obstructions. That needs to be fireblocked from the rest of the wall. All the penetrations into the top plates need to be sealed with fire-block foam. So, I have some work ahead of me. I also dropped the ceiling in one section rather than framing out around the ducts and other things installed below the joists. Fortunately, the overall ceiling height is 10' and even in the dropped areas it will be 9'.

One other thing that struck me as odd is I'll need to install Tyvek on one of the exterior poured concrete walls behind the insulation. The 2x4 walls on that one wall are about 2.5" off of the poured wall to handle the HVAC refrigerant lines for the first and second floor units. The other poured walls are only the required 1" off the exterior walls. The back wall is framed and I made it double thick because the house was built with a 2x8 sill plate leaving me with a 3.5" of plate sticking out of the wall to deal with. Rather than some hokey trim out I just made the wall 7" deep. Given our mild climate, I didn't see the need to install an insulated floor on top of the concrete.

Anyway, a few pictures of the project. Some of the framing of the door and after installation pictures of the door and the opening between the office space and the main area of the basement.
 

Attachments

Sparky617

Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2014
Messages
1,707
Reaction score
631
Location
Cary NC
Fun fact, now all lighting and receptacle circuits now need to be arc fault / ground fault protected. I knew my outlets did, but not the lights. So another $100 in breakers for the two lighting circuits. More photos to follow.
 

Sparky617

Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2014
Messages
1,707
Reaction score
631
Location
Cary NC
Nice work. You are lucky to have the high headroom. :thumb:
Thanks.

My yard is a hill. Ten feet was as high as they could go without having the basement engineered.

On the arc fault/gfci thankfully I don't need to bring the rest of the house up to that standard as there is no way my panel could handle all the breakers. I have a number of double breakers that with the new breakers it would take two slots instead of one. The other change is my main panel under the meter doesn't have a main shut-off, those aren't allowed in the current code, but were legal when the house was built in 1998-99.
 
Last edited:

Sparky617

Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2014
Messages
1,707
Reaction score
631
Location
Cary NC
There is a house in the adjacent neighborhood that has 12' ceilings in their basement, and the very back of the basement is built over a 6' crawlspace. So at the back of the house the first floor is over 18' off the ground. It is a two story house with 10' first floor ceilings and 9' second floor ceilings and there is a gable facing the back of the house. The guy painting it was using a triple extension ladder. That would be a workout going up and down the ladder painting that house.
 

Hamberg

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 3, 2021
Messages
82
Reaction score
42
Location
Horsham PA
On the framing, overall it looked good. My new door opening is fine without an engineer's approval, same with an opening between two of the rooms under the gluelam beam that runs down the middle of the house.
nice header job!!!
 

Hamberg

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 3, 2021
Messages
82
Reaction score
42
Location
Horsham PA
all lighting and receptacle circuits now need to be arc fault / ground fault protected. I knew my outlets did, but not the lights. So another $100 in breakers for the two lighting circuits.
same here for any circuits installed below grade. Guess it makes sense - those would be the first to fill in a flood 🤨
 

Sparky617

Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2014
Messages
1,707
Reaction score
631
Location
Cary NC
same here for any circuits installed below grade. Guess it makes sense - those would be the first to fill in a flood 🤨
I think it is in the code now for all lighting and outlet circuits. I don't need to retrofit my house. If my basement flooded more than 1.5 inches you better have an ark. I'm 150 feet about the nearest stream, and my backyard drops continuously to that stream.
 

Sparky617

Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2014
Messages
1,707
Reaction score
631
Location
Cary NC
nice header job!!!
Thanks, I didn't want my breakfast nook dropping into the basement and the lumber was cheaper than an engineer to approve a lighter design. It is a bit over engineered given the double 2x12 plus the double 2x10 I installed in front of the existing wall to handle the wide sill plate.

The inspector liked all of my work, I wasn't sure about how much blocking I'd need, apparently it is a lot.
 

Sparky617

Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2014
Messages
1,707
Reaction score
631
Location
Cary NC
I think it is in the code now for all lighting and outlet circuits. I don't need to retrofit my house. If my basement flooded more than 1.5 inches you better have an ark. I'm 150 feet about the nearest stream, and my backyard drops continuously to that stream.
That should have been I'm 150 feet ABOVE, not about. Hence the need for an ark if my basement ever floods above the sill plate.

I spent several hours yesterday doing blocking along the back wall. This would have been soooooo much easier had I done it while I was building the walls. Oh well, live and learn. Having trouble finding Great Stuff Fire Block foam locally. I may just have to go with Amazon as none of the local big boxes have any. I do need to check a local hardware store to get at least one, if they have it, just to see how far a can goes with the foaming I need to do.
 

Sparky617

Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2014
Messages
1,707
Reaction score
631
Location
Cary NC
I got to say the biggest PITA about working on the basement project is move stuff around to work. I've tried to clear as much out as possible, but there is still stuff that I can't stash elsewhere without giving up parking in my garage. I'm loathe to rent a storage unit as I don't want to haul it there and once you get one, it can be tough to finally get rid of it. They have a lot of long term renters of those things that NEVER open them after putting their stuff in there. Once the basement is done a giant purge is about to begin. I'm looking forward to finally building my workshop with permanent storage for tools and supplies. The big room will allow me to work on projects, while the shop will have a workbench and places to organize my tools and supplies.
 

Sparky617

Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2014
Messages
1,707
Reaction score
631
Location
Cary NC
I just ordered a case of Great Stuff Fire Block foam along with an applicator gun from Amazon. Nearest source was Garner and I'm at that point we're I'd rather just have it delivered than spend an hour driving to and from to get it. I'm not sure I'll need a dozen cans, but I can always sell it or donate the extras to HFH. The closer Lowe's and Home Depot stores were out of stock. Had it been available at the store I'm at least once per weekend day, I would have just picked up a couple of cans to see how much I needed. Given supply chain issues these days, go with the sure thing.
 

Latest posts

Top