Once the foundation walls have been built and the forms are removed you still have two more things to do before the excavator backfills against the foundation:
- Water Proof – the foundation walls need to be water-proofed with a coating. Remember talking about how The Ties hold the forms together? Those ties can be a spot where water will penetrate through the foundation into the basement. So, all the ties need to be broken off and then the foundation needs to be coated.
- Look at today’s photograph and you will see a “Tar” being sprayed on the foundation as water proofing. This black tar is sprayed only on the surface of the concrete that will eventually be buried. Look carefully and you will see that the top two-feet of the foundation are not sprayed; that explains why this process is something you typically never see.
- Again, look at today’s photograph and you will see at the very bottom of the wall are The Footings. Around the perimeter of the building’s footings a series of Perimeter Drains need to be installed. As the water runs down the outside of the foundation it is caught in the perimeter drain and channeled away from the house.
- Insulation – The Vermont Energy Code requires that your foundation be insulated. There are two major ways to insulate:
- Outside – some contractors like to install “Blue-Board” foam on the outside of the foundation, typically 2” thick.
- Inside – many contractors including Vermont Modular prefer to insulate the foundation from the Inside using one of several methods.
- Spray foam – the best but most expensive
- Rigid Blue-Board foam – good but expensive
- Fiberglass batt insulation – not the best but the least expensive
- Combinations – some spray foam to seal and then finished with fiberglass – very good and moderately expensive
- DUMB SOLUTION – some intellectually challenged contractors like to install “Blue-Board” foam insulation on the outside and then CUT OFF the top two feet so that the foam is not exposed to the elements. Do they realize that leaves the top two feet of the foundation that is completely exposed to the harsh winter completely NOT INSULATED? Vermont Modular is 100% convinced this approach is simply stupid.
After the foundation has been water-proofed you are ready to backfill the dirt so that a permanent grade is established.
Again, we hope this information helps you as you continue your adventure of building a new home.
We would love to hear from you. Call us at 802.985-5855