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post #31 of 62 Old 08-15-2006, 11:25 AM
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Does anyone have any HVAC DYI experience? I'm being quoted about $3800 to relocate my furnace about 4', add two trunk lines with 6 feeds and 2 returns. That includes shortening the coil lines, rerouting the gas and electrical lines.

I sure would prefer to do the lion share of the "non technical" (sheetmetal, relocation) stuff myself and save all that money, and call in the pros for the shortening the coil lines.

Definitely don't want to bite off more than I can handle though.
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post #32 of 62 Old 08-15-2006, 11:53 AM
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I think HVAC is as much an art as a science. I had no trouble deciding to do my own electrical. I framed my basement. I sheetrocked it. I do my own plumbing. I do everything except HVAC. It's not the sheet metal work that's the problem-- that's easy-- I'm afraid I'll screw things up enough to not heat/cool the house properly/efficiently, burn out my fan, or worst-case, cause a carbon monoxide or gas problem.

But, if you can get a pro to plan/spec it all out for you, go for it.
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post #33 of 62 Old 08-15-2006, 03:09 PM
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I agree about the art part. HVAC set up incorrectly can also fry your furnace by starving it of return air.

I had several HVAC guys over to price out the job and they pretty much mapped it all out for me. And I'll hire someone to give it an inspection prior to going back on line.

It's only speculation at this point but I'm leaning towards a DIY approach.
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post #34 of 62 Old 08-15-2006, 04:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by new_to_this View Post

I think you were had. Guess it depends on where you live but IPE shouldn't be considered expensive or exotic.


I researched this stuff for six months before I bought. No way was I "had". I researched national, regional, and local average costs. I got several bids, and ended up getting an excellent price.

Using national averages, the cost for IPE is similar to the cost for vinyl. It's about twice the cost of cedar, with an even higher multiple compared to pressure treated pine.

When you say it shouldn't be considered expensive, I'm not really sure what your basis for comparison is. Everyone around here gets their decks built from PTP or Cedar, so that is mine.

Ipe is an exotic in the sense that it is a South American hardwood, and many suppliers classify it in the same category with the other non-domestic exotics, like teak, although teak is quite a bit more expensive.

I know of what I speak here. If you want me to post links confirming its status as an exotic or its average price compared to other decking materials, I can.

When you say I was "had," it might be helpful for you to know that the information I am laying out here did not come from some contractor trying to sell me a bill of goods. I knew what I was doing regarding this wood long before I ever starting calling around.
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post #35 of 62 Old 08-16-2006, 04:06 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gremmy View Post

I researched this stuff for six months before I bought. No way was I "had". I researched national, regional, and local average costs. I got several bids, and ended up getting an excellent price.

Using national averages, the cost for IPE is similar to the cost for vinyl. It's about twice the cost of cedar, with an even higher multiple compared to pressure treated pine.

When you say it shouldn't be considered expensive, I'm not really sure what your basis for comparison is. Everyone around here gets their decks built from PTP or Cedar, so that is mine.

Ipe is an exotic in the sense that it is a South American hardwood, and many suppliers classify it in the same category with the other non-domestic exotics, like teak, although teak is quite a bit more expensive.

I know of what I speak here. If you want me to post links confirming its status as an exotic or its average price compared to other decking materials, I can.

When you say I was "had," it might be helpful for you to know that the information I am laying out here did not come from some contractor trying to sell me a bill of goods. I knew what I was doing regarding this wood long before I ever starting calling around.

Like I said, depends on where you live. IPE is the cheaper alternative in California since it is suppose to be a renewable hardwood from Brazil . It does look nice. I'm a DIY'er and $11k for a small 300sq ft. deck is expensive to me. Personally, I'll stick with PTP (since I'm a white pine tree farmer ) I don't think much of composites, making decking out of bio-degradable material just doesn't sound right to me.
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post #36 of 62 Old 08-16-2006, 04:35 AM
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I've been on that deck. The guys who did it did an excellent job. Very good craftsmanship. Also, I think one of the things you're forgetting is the footings and the 10' height off the ground (support timbers, cross bracing, railings, longer than standard stairs, etc.).

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post #37 of 62 Old 08-16-2006, 04:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by new_to_this View Post

Like I said, depends on where you live. IPE is the cheaper alternative in California since it is suppose to be a renewable hardwood from Brazil . It does look nice. I'm a DIY'er and $11k for a small 300sq ft. deck is expensive to me. Personally, I'll stick with PTP (since I'm a white pine tree farmer ) I don't think much of composites, making decking out of bio-degradable material just doesn't sound right to me.

Understood. But your original point was that it was neither expensive nor exotic. And my point is that it is generally classified as an exotic (like teak), and that it is indeed expensive compared to budget-level decking materials (PTP being the most common).

Here are some links where IPE is referred to as an exotic. Please understand, I'm not saying I think it's exotic, whatever that would imply. I'm saying that many suppliers classify it as an exotic, along with other tropical hardwoods.

http://www.eastteak.com/selectnews.p...CTURAL+DECKING

http://www.ipedepot.com/compare.htm

And since you said you're a DIY guy, here's a reference to IPE being an exotic on the DIY Website:
http://72.14.203.104/search?q=cache:...&ct=clnk&cd=27

That 11K price-tag includes the thicker 5/4 planks (because the thinner planks sometimes cup), the hidden fastening system, the 10 foot elevation support on 6x6 piers, stairs, Azek vinyl wrap, vinyl railing, vinyl wrap around every post, etc. The deck is built stronger than it has to be. For example, the thicker IPE planks are cleared to span 32 inches, but I have 16 inch joist spacing. That's just one example. I also have an extra support post under the stair case and extra tie-ins between the stairs and the deck because the contractor is just as retentive as I am, and that's saying something.

IPE requires special tools and is generally very labor intensive. It's very heavy (sinks in water) and every hole has to be countersunk. On my deck, I paid a bit extra for the Eb-Ty hidden fastening system, so the deck looks like a hardwood floor. By the way, this guy that I ended up hiring actually charged quite a bit less for labor than the other guys I took bids from, despite the fact that his work was the best of those I previewed. So I got a good deal on the labor too.

The only reason that I mentioned the terms "exotic" and "expensive" was so people wouldn't think I was paying 11K for a deck made out of PTP, which would have been counter to my point that contracting seems to be less expensive here in the Midwest than in the Northeast. Using the same dimensions as my existing deck, I can get a deck professionally made out of PTP for 3 to 4 K, cedar for 7K. I can get vinyl, redwood, or IPE for 11K, although my understanding is that redwood is cheaper in California.
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post #38 of 62 Old 08-16-2006, 05:06 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caesar1 View Post

My new home builder is charging roughly $29.00 /square foot for the finished basement. Here is the plan (the finished portion is roughly 950 square feet):




He "claims" that in order to induce me to purchase this custom option, they removed much of the "profit", since they normally charge $38.00/ sq foot. [This is a new home builder-- not just a contractor for the basement, so they always put major profit in options.]

The calculation of $29/ square foot includes the charge for "waterproofing". Which is normally a separate charge of $4,000.00.

If you remove the waterproofing charge, the calculation of cost per square foot is $25.57.

This finished basement includes the following:

"Permit, electrical per code, wall insulation for the media room, paint and painter, trims and carpenter, framing lumber and the carpenter, doors, fire suppression system. The electronic damper system for the heat and air conditioner is included in the standard specifications for the basement."

Any upgrades to standard carpeting and standard electrical fixtures and sockets are additional.

Note that the powder room in the basement is an entirely separate charge of $6,000.00.

By the way, this is in the Philadelphia suburbs.

Thanks for scanning the plan. That is very helpful for giving me a visual of your project and calculating costs.

So far the bids I'm getting for my theater are in a pretty narrow range between 27 and 32 dollars per square foot.
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post #39 of 62 Old 08-16-2006, 08:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GreySkies View Post

I think HVAC is as much an art as a science. I had no trouble deciding to do my own electrical. I framed my basement. I sheetrocked it. I do my own plumbing. I do everything except HVAC. It's not the sheet metal work that's the problem-- that's easy-- I'm afraid I'll screw things up enough to not heat/cool the house properly/efficiently, burn out my fan, or worst-case, cause a carbon monoxide or gas problem.

But, if you can get a pro to plan/spec it all out for you, go for it.

I'll do my own HVAC and electrical. It's plumbing I look at as an "art". I've sweated a few joints, but there's no duct tape equivalent to fix a half-assed job.
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post #40 of 62 Old 08-16-2006, 08:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CPanther95 View Post

... but there's no duct tape equivalent to fix a half-assed job.

You've just never seen my dad's truck.
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post #41 of 62 Old 08-16-2006, 10:10 AM
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CPanther,
Since you're a DIY'er in the HVAC arena, can I bounce a couple of questions off of you. As I mentioned in an earlier post (#31) I've got a quote of about $3800 to move my furnace about 4 feet and run some additonal trunk lines, feed and return lines and misc stuff (no second zone, if that's included the quote jumps to $5500. So here are my questions:
1. Can the trunk lines be purchased pre-fabricated or is that an onsite task? If onsite, how difficult is the bending, cutting, joining, etc?
2. Based on your DIY experience, would you put take on the task yourself?
3. I think I'll need a couple of pieces of custom shaped trunk bends, what do you recommend?
4. I haven't even read up on shortening the coil lines, I was planning on saving that task for the pros...any experience with that?

Thanks for the info.
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post #42 of 62 Old 08-16-2006, 10:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gremmy View Post

Thanks for scanning the plan. That is very helpful for giving me a visual of your project and calculating costs.

So far the bids I'm getting for my theater are in a pretty narrow range between 27 and 32 dollars per square foot.


By the way, the media room is 16 x 20 -- the riser starts at 11' 3" back from the opposite wall and goes all the way to the back of the room. So the riser is almost 9 feet in depth.

It starts 3 feet from the side wall, so it is 13 feet wide.

There was no additional charge for the riser.
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post #43 of 62 Old 08-16-2006, 11:33 AM
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We just had the HVAC work completed in our 1700 sq ft basement as we are about to start framing. We had a new compressor and heat pump installed for the basement with one thermostat, all the existing ducts were changed to the flexible, compressible type, and where possible moved up into the joists, or along the walls, and the new ducts installed were the same flexible type. 5 supply ducts, and 2 returns, plus when we have finished the basement, they will come back, attach all the register covers, complete the HVAC wiring, and fire it up. We paid a total of $7016.
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post #44 of 62 Old 08-16-2006, 11:38 AM
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Since we are talking HVAC (which I have no personal knowledge of) - I recomend that you run a few searches. Its a biggie for sound isolation (or more to the point potential sound flanking problems) and for the comfort of your room. Comes up as a source of regret in DIY blunder threads.

I think, the cures for isolation seem to include flex ducts with 2-3 or more 90 degree turns, lined ducts if you have trunk lines in your HT, and larger ducts to minimize the sound of the airflow. For comfort, I think it is tied to the adequacy of the feeds, and/or separate controllers/zones.

As some one who needs to move his furnance 4 feet, and the water heater 20 feet, I am disapointed, but not surprised by your quoted price.

Good luck in the project.
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post #45 of 62 Old 08-16-2006, 08:19 PM
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Dave,
It sounds like we're in very similiar circumstances. My waterheaters also need to be moved about 20 feet. Again the quote was ridiculous. If I actually manage to do this work myself without screwing anything up, I'll be ahead of the game by quite a few thousand dollars that can be reinvested into the HT. My wife is really starting to flipout because of all the projects I've convinced her that I can handle.

I was looking at Sandmans thread (see below) and he used something called duct board for his HVAC. Read his post (#96) on page 4 of his thread...it's pretty interesting. It's actually a great thread.

Home Entertainment & Theater Builder > Dedicated Theater Design & Construction Sandmans Home Theater Construction Begins!

Anyway, I'm pretty sure I'm going to do most of the labor in relocating the furnace and the water heater(s). I'll be sure to document it all and get a thread rolling.
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post #46 of 62 Old 08-16-2006, 08:33 PM
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Good luck Tony. Sounds like you are more skilled than me (not a high standard). Look forward to seeing it come together.

I agree with you about Sandman's thread. A great read.
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post #47 of 62 Old 03-18-2007, 10:47 AM
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Hello Forum,

most important on pricing are we talking having the job done by licensed sub contractors like : licensed electrical contractor,plumber for bath buildouts,hvac contractor for the supply and returns,needed if you will be pulling a permit and doing the basement build out per city codes and permit issued. Or there are companies out there who are handymen and claim to do it all and not use professional tradesmen.
Professional contractors would understand where I am coming from and home owners might not. I am based of Huntley il. and are a professional contractor performing basement remodeling,room additions,decks,stamped concrete and more and saw the thread and wanted to participate so make the right choices and you will be good to go with enjoyable space for your family !

Curb Appeal Construction Co. Huntley il. 1-815-923-0707
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post #48 of 62 Old 02-03-2008, 11:58 AM
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ha
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post #49 of 62 Old 02-03-2008, 08:29 PM - Thread Starter
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I started this thread a long-arse time ago. Why is this back on the first page again?

Since I first asked the question about how much I should expect the contracting to cost, I've managed to live through one very unsavory remodel, taken away many entertaining stories and tales of what not to do when working with a contractor, and have now been enjoying my completed space for over a year.

One year from now, I hope someone will revive this thread with an equally ponderous picture of Garfield or something.
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post #50 of 62 Old 02-04-2008, 04:58 AM
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Framers and builders in general have really dropped pricing around here. I'm finishing the rest of my basement and quotes have been very reasonable. 62 feet by 40 feet I'm adding walls all the way around as well as a hallway partitioning off a bedroom, closet, and bathroom as well as framing around the furnaces and we're talking only $2500 for framing including all wood and nails. Drywall walls and ceiling is about $3000 and then we have tile and carpet to contend with but overall not bad. Hope to have it all done minus the pimp bar I plan to put in for around $10,000. Electrician for the place quoted me $1500-$2000 or so. He is a friend.

Dan
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post #51 of 62 Old 02-04-2008, 07:02 AM
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I want a room addition and one of the guys I like a lot that bid on it last summer has just called me back and lowered his bid by 1/3rd stating their down turn in business lately.

So.. May not be the owrst time to try to have something done after all.
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post #52 of 62 Old 07-25-2008, 02:26 PM
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I recently bought a townhouse that has not been constructed yet. When i chose all the options I opted for having the lower level/basement already finished by the builder. There was a price on that of $8700. I also opted to get the morning room which expands the place on all levels. Today however i get a call telling me that a mistake was make and that the 8700 was just to finish the standard size basement/lower level and does not cover the extra space the morning room adds. This would be an added $4000. My contract had me signed up for the $8700. They then tell me that you can't finish 1 part of the basement and leave another part not done. I can't add more to the loan since i have already gone through the loan process.
So my options are to:
1. throw a fit and demand that since it was clearly their mistake, that they do the entire basement for the $8700. Plus they clearly could not give me the option of adding the extra $4000 to the loan so they should have to eat this.
2. The sales rep was trying to tell me to get rid of the finished basement option entirely and have it done on my own afterwards.

Not sure if this situation could be good for me or cause more hastle. The only think to 'finish' on the basement is to add a wall around the washer/dryer and water heater area, add dry wall, minor duct work, add electrical outlets, and then of course the carpeting.

Does anyone know whether i could get all this done for less than $8700? I would also not be doing the work myself and would have to hire ppl to do the work.
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post #53 of 62 Old 07-26-2008, 08:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmg9f View Post

1. throw a fit and demand that since it was clearly their mistake, that they do the entire basement for the $8700. Plus they clearly could not give me the option of adding the extra $4000 to the loan so they should have to eat this.
2. The sales rep was trying to tell me to get rid of the finished basement option entirely and have it done on my own afterwards.

Not sure if this situation could be good for me or cause more hastle. The only think to 'finish' on the basement is to add a wall around the washer/dryer and water heater area, add dry wall, minor duct work, add electrical outlets, and then of course the carpeting.

Does anyone know whether i could get all this done for less than $8700? I would also not be doing the work myself and would have to hire ppl to do the work.

Throw a fit. If it were the other way around, they wouldn't allow YOU to make changes. I'd require them to finish what you want and leave the other portion unfinished. Now you've got some leverage since it sounds as though they messed up.

You don't say how large the space is, so it'll be extremely difficult to determine whether it will take more than $8700 to get it done.

CJ

Follow my build here: Harvest Ridge Theater
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post #54 of 62 Old 07-26-2008, 01:02 PM
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I'm building a new house and negotiated with the contractor to also finish the walkout basement at cost plus 10%. So mine will have about 1700 sq ft with a wet bar, family room, exercise room, bedroom, full bath, and theater room. It includes $5/sq ft flooring budget and about $10k in trim (crown, paneling etc) throughout the basement. It also includes a separate furnace/ac for the basement. It doesn't include the theater components though. I think for basic finishes he said he could do like $27/sq ft, but it would 'look like a basement' at that price. And at the current price of $72k it comes out to be about $42 a sq ft. It's expensive, but to me it's worth it.

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post #55 of 62 Old 07-27-2008, 01:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carboranadum View Post

Throw a fit. If it were the other way around, they wouldn't allow YOU to make changes. I'd require them to finish what you want and leave the other portion unfinished. Now you've got some leverage since it sounds as though they messed up.

You don't say how large the space is, so it'll be extremely difficult to determine whether it will take more than $8700 to get it done.

CJ

+1 (on the new post from the dead thread )

Assuming they actually contracted with you to finish the entire basement (not just the portion BEFORE the morning room addition), I would throw a fit. A contract is a contract. CJ is right - there is no way they would let you out if you "accidentally" signed a contract for $4000 more than you thought.

They screwed up and someone told the sales guy to fix it. Beat your chest, escalate to management, threaten to go to the local "troubleshooter" for publicity, etc. New Construction Builders these days don't want to lose business. I would make them finish the entire basement. This is just because I've had VERY bad experiences with new home salesmen saying one thing and then being screwed in the end - finding out that they lied or were clueless, etc.
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post #56 of 62 Old 07-27-2008, 02:29 PM
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I can't believe these high prices. I'm doing my build entirely DIY and paying for materials in cash as they are needed.

Rinker Family Cinema Construction Thread:
https://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...ghlight=Rinker
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post #57 of 62 Old 07-28-2008, 05:37 AM
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Thread from the dead!

I finished my approximately 1500sq ft basement for around $12k.

Totally gutted - new studs, electrical, drywall, mudding, paint; added another bathroom with sump; enclosed boiler room to code, etc.

The only thing I didn't do myself was the mudding -- I couldn't bring myself to do it. I originally got quotes of $30k-$40k which was ridiculous NY pricing.

I'm glad I don't live there anymore.

John
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post #58 of 62 Old 07-29-2008, 04:22 AM
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Here is my $.02
I am working on finishing my third basement in in as many new houses within the last 15 years. I guess I am a glutton for punishment. The last basement I finished cost me about 25k and I did the framing myself but contracted out everything up through the trim work. This did not include the additional 10k I spent on cabinets, counter tops, and carpet/flooring. Approx. sqft. 1500; in Naperville, outside Chicago.

Here and now I am at it again after moving into a new home in Northwest Indiana, I have a 2000 sqft basement that I was quoted 50k for finishing which included framing through trim work and drywalled ceilings. Basement walls are 10ft. high with floor trusses instead of rafters (so much better) because you can have a true ceiling without obstructions. To make a long story short, I balked at the estimate and contracted it out little by little and as of today I am ready for drywall, having done most of the electrical, insulation and plumbing myself.
The bids I received for HVAc ranged from $400 bucks to $2500 for a few supply lines and 3 cold air returns. Ridiculous!

Beer is the answer! What is the question?
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post #59 of 62 Old 01-29-2009, 05:23 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GreySkies View Post

And that's how I justified spending the extra money. I am paranoid about mold; even if it's not the toxic stuff, it smells.

Here's two horror stories--

A college buddy up in Milwaukee has had an issue in the summer with his basement floor getting wet. The house is a post-war bungalow, with a basement rec room that was done in the 60s. He called me a couple of weeks ago saying that the floor tiles felt soggy and squished when he stepped on them. Well, to make the story short, he now has an asbestos abatement problem with his loose floor tiles.

Story two-- our neighborhood is new. The neighborhood was built with separate drainage systems for sewer and storm. Houses were also built with backflow prevention so that storm runoof/sewer can't back up into basements. Our next door neighbors were having a relative (brother-in-law GC) finish their basement. He had unplugged the French drain sump pump (one of two outlets in our basements) and neglected to re-plug it. After a pretty good summer storm, they had six inches of standing water in their freshly drywalled basement.

Of course, Dricore (or similar) isn't going to solve those problems-- I just thought I'd share some basement-water horror stories.

With Dricore, you can put carpeting/pad right over the top of it-- no additional underlayment needed. The manufacturer claims that the plastic is strong enough that you could even put a piano on the floor-- and they recommend that interior walls be built over the top of the floor. I haven't seen any deflection.

Before I put Dricore down, I painted the floor with Drylock (if you do this, make sure you get the stuff that can be used on floors).

One of my wife's sisters and her husband live outside of Mukwanago. Their GC told them the same thing about eight years ago. Their basement reeks of mold. With a vapor barrier, don't put it against the concrete; you want the barrier on the side of the insulation facing the room (i.e., inside).

For my exterior walls, I framed standard 2x4 walls ap. 1-2 inches away from the concrete walls, insulating them with vapor barrier-backed insulation, with the vapor barrier facing the inside of the room. Pics are available on my Media Room website.

I also used a mold-resistant drywall for my walls. It has a specially-treated core and uses fiberglass instead of a paper backing. It's also about twice as heavy as regular drywall and it's more difficult to get a good drywall screw dimple in it without popping the hole. It was also a couple of bucks a sheet more expensive than regular drywall. (I also gladly paid extra to have the Menards delivery guys take it down to the basement for me.)

I've heard that the best thing to do in insulating an already-built raw basement is to start by gluing an inch of extruded (not expanded) polystyrene directly to concrete walls and then building insulated 2x4 walls inside the polystyrene. And that the absolute best way to insulate a basement is by insulate it from the outside with extruded polystyrene before the basement is back-filled.

just got done taking a look at your bar setup. Dude, that is incredible. Props to you
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post #60 of 62 Old 01-29-2009, 06:51 AM
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I am in the process of finishing my basement now. I'm basically using friends recommendations for people they have used to do side jobs and I'm doing a bit of it myself (I planned to do most of it myself, but I'm finding my time being taken up with a 1yr old and my job). The area of the basement that will be finished is roughly 600sq/ft and so far, I've only had the framing done. I paid $675 (I received one quote for almost $3k) for a 'den', theater space, a closet, and storage in metal studs. Today, I'm supposed to have someone come out for electrical... Don't know the price yet.

I'm planning on about $10k when all is said and done. I already have all the theater equipment aside from the projector This will probably take a 2-4 months as we're spreading it out. We're still filling a new house with furniture (we went from a 700 sq/ft apartment to a 2,200 sq/ft house before the basment) and I'm about to trade in my 2-door car for something easier to get my daughter in and out.

-JasonThe "Z" Family Theater - I moved.
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