There are some people who dream about fame and fortune and others who dream about the perfect pizza. The other option is to build your own as the flickr user above has so beautifully done and documented.
For those of you ready to dive in already, you can find step-by-step instructions here as well as a tools and materials list.
KGI is a nonprofit community of over 30,000 people who are growing some of our own food and helping others to do the same. Energy gurus and building codes routinely recommend these days that foundation walls be insulated.
He lists four possible generic products: pressure-treated plywood, fiber-cement panel siding, stucco, and surface-bonding cement.
Robert Riversong has used surface-bonding cement with "excellent success." He adds extra acrylic mortar modifier to the mix to improve plasticity, adhesion and water resistance. The coating should be vapor permeable even with the acrylic additive, he adds, and can be waterproofed with UGL Drylok latex masonry sealer, available in both gray and white.
Allison Bailes writes that he's heard recommendations for fiber cement, but adds, "I always worry about that. GBA Advisor Michael Chandler, a builder in North Carolina, uses Hardie backer made by James Hardie. Mark Hinrichs adds that prefinished fiber-cement panels and boards and cement backerboard can be used in contact with the ground, but only in mild climates.
Although Riversong has had good luck with surface-bonding cement, he points to a way of sidestepping the protection issue altogether by using a Thermomass foundation. First, a confession: Steve Baczek, Mike Guertin and I missed this issue when we were doing the Key Materials tips for the GBA foundation construction details involving exterior rigid insulation for basement and crawlspace foundations. I think the best looking option, but certainly not the least expensive, is cultured stone veneer. The product you link to appears to be intended for new-construction slabs -- not for basement foundations or retrofit insulation. Martin, (if you're reading) how would you fasten PT plywood to a concrete wall through 4-6 inches of EPS or possibly rock-wool? The best way that I know off is to include the PT plywood and the insulation as part of the outside forms for your concrete pour.
Although I have interviewed builders who have protected rigid foam with PT plywood, I have never done it myself, so I'm not sure which type of fasteners are best. If I had to do it, I would call up some manufacturers who specialize in masonry and concrete fasteners and ask for the best fasteners for this application. What point is there, in letting your heat escape into the crawl space, where much diluted it is very slightly slowed on its journey to the sky? In addition to being much stronger, therefore more likely to look decent after a few decades of bumps and weedwacking, it also has a lot lower thermal conductivity. Forgot to mention that in our area, better roofing companies often have a leftover coil of TCS sitting in their shop. It's only a little bit harder to work compared to copper, a bit harder to bend and a bit harder to cut.
We get essentially comparable pricing to copper, so we have been using it for flashings quite a bit, anywhere that copper's color or eventual verdigris dripping would be less preferred to the soft gray color of TCS.
One of the products I suggested, Insul-Cap, is a vinyl product made to protect foam insulation.
We use rigid insulation outside of the foundation and outside of the sheathing to prevent thermal bridging. Guys, the solutions I've read here, and the detail sketched in the article all share one serious drawback, I'm all with you about insulation, but I'd be scared to death to not have some way to keep an eye out for termites coming up into the house from the crack between the foundation wall and the foam board. Here is a vote for galvanized wire lath nailed with large washers through the foam into the CMU, and then parged over with mortar. We've just started using Stryro Industries Tuff II trowel on coating which was recommended by Dow. While exterior rigid foam insulation has its benefits, it's really expensive to protect, regardless of how you do it.
Generaly speaking it seems like most people want to do it yourself which is great but a general contractor is under the gun to meet budget and time and the exterior insulation is good but it seems to me alot of maintenance down the road and potential for problems.
In 1982 I built my 2 story house with outside insulation from the foundation to the roof line. I also noticed that flashing is not shown over the top of the insulation in about the same location as the item that is not called out. After reading all of the discussions, I see no easy answer to this issue and this article and comments pushed that boat farther from the shore. Still, in our area, insulation is not installed often on the exterior foundation other than concrete insulated forms. I agree with you -- it is best to include metal flashing that extends from the gap between the mudsill and foundation, out over the protective covering installed over the foam. According to at least a few manufacturers that I looked at before using ARXX ICF blocks for my house, a favoured solution is parging cement to 6" below grade.


For a rubble foundation, I think your only choice is closed-cell spray polyurethane foam, followed by stucco. The synthetic stucco used for EIFS is applied directly to EPS foam, but most EIFS systems require fiberglass netting as well.
I think SBC would probably work better, but it is harder to come by (and probably more expensive).
I've done a parge coat with type N cement and soft sand, and I've also tried a mix with straight portland. The foam needs to be clean, or the stucco will eventually flake off; when exposed for a couple months the surface of the polystyrene degrades to a yellowish powder, which leads to poor adhesion of the stucco and flaking off. Don't know if that's your real name, Tom, but, yes, here in the south we do have a termite problem.
It's a lot of work but seeing what I have, I don't feel good about leaving any foam unprotected below grade.
I was proposing to lap a peel and stick membrane up from my monolithic slab stem foundation foam (incl. What kind of compatibility issues will I have with using an asphalt based peel and stick membrane on EPS or XPS foams, or should I look for another product?? Is there any value in using a 15mil vapor barier (Stego Wrap type) below the sub slab foam? To determine the compatibility of any peel-and-stick product with a particular substrate, you should contact the manufacturer of the peel-and-stick product.
Whether building or buying a new outside kennel run or re-building an old one, a gun dog owner can create a better final product by following guidelines developed through the experiences of many other canine caretakers. The suggestions offered here are mostly from Gun Dog readers who have spent considerable time, effort and money learning how to locate, design and construct an outdoor home for their canines. Deciding on a location is an important first step in building a kennel run because the place chosen will contribute directly to the design of the structure and influence the choice of materials and methods of construction in producing the final product.
A kennel located far away from the owner’s house will have different features from the run connected directly to an attached garage. In Austin’s opinion, the possible disadvantages of this remote location include barking control, which is more difficult because the long distance makes a trip to the kennel for a correction time-consuming and inconvenient. Locating a kennel run closer to the house has the benefits of proximity in controlling nuisance barking—voice commands for “quiet” usually can be given more easily and can more efficiently be enforced when the dog is in earshot, according to Dale Wright, a German wirehaired pointer owner in Minnesota. The safety and security of a dog can be better maintained when the canine in question is in easy seeing distance as well, Wright says. In Schmidt’s design, entry doors are located on the side of the kennel run closest to the opening of the doghouse and furthest from the end of the run. Chain-link fencing for outside and inside kennel runs has always been popular because of its simple installation, efficiency of use, long-term durability and relatively low cost. Larry Devries, who raises and hunts Chesapeake Bay retrievers in eastern Maine, prefers welded wire. Many gun dogs probably spend 95 percent of their lives in an outside kennel run,waiting for daily exercise, training and days in the field and on the water during hunting season.
As such, we owe it to them to make their living quarters as comfortable and clean as possible.
I tend to be part of the latter crowd and have often dreamed about having my own wood-fired pizza oven in the backyard. Although I'm no handyman, I'm thinking that I could eventually pull something like this off with practice (i.e. One way of accomplishing that is by adding a layer of rigid foam insulation on the outside of the foundation. I've seen scrap fiber-cement siding lying on the ground and delaminating after getting wet. Joints between panels are covered with fiber mesh tape embedded in surface-bonding cement, then covered with a sponge finish stucco and elastomeric paint.
Drawing on research he originally did for Energy Design Update, Holladay says only one fiber-cement manufacturer, MaxiTile of Carson, California, allows installation in contact with the ground. We did include a tip on the protective covering for slab foundations but it’s not nearly as helpful as the contributors to this Q&A post. It’s a little bit like wearing your pants below your drawers (here, I date myself, I realize… ). Its greater thickness is quite likely to mean a water-table detail at the transition to the above-grade wall. But whether or not you need drying to the exterior depends a lot on drying potential to the interior.
They are from Wichita, KS, but its my understanding they are in the process to have their product distributed by a national chain. I've seen a home in N MN use a metal cap (not sure if aluminum or stainless) on the top of the insulation with the sheeting held on with metal straps and then another sheet of metal slid up under the cap the continues below grade by a bit. They have a pretty extensive list of drawings on their wesite, but let me contact them and ask them to post some drawings or pics or if you have anything more specific.
If it is a basement, it might be desirable to heat the space, since many homeowners use basements for living space.


Well over half the houses I've renovated have termite damage, and covering the foundation up to the framing seems like an open invitation.
It is manufactured by the Wisconsin Poured Wall Contractors Supply, a company that does not maintain a Web site. The termites will be thanking you till hell freezes over for giving 'em the 'cover of darkness'. We can do a thermal barrier that is maintenance free inside the home and dont have to worry about someone backfilling against our insulation and damaging it.
As one other poster stated if there is no break of the rigid insulation you are inviting a problem with termites or ants or whatever.
The 1 inch insulation at the outside of the block wall is covered with embossed aluminum sheets. The flashing should have a 45-degree lip (drip edge) to kick out any moisture away from the house.
I haven't got to the stage of needing to apply it yet and given the sudden appearance of snow I might not get there 'til next spring!
Here is the problem, I understand there is great benefit to insulating the exterior foundation that is above grade.
It would also be possible, but more expensive, to prepare the cured foam for adhered manufactured stone veneer. Traditional stucco requires wire lath, which would need to be mechanically fastened somehow.
In my experience, 6 mil polyethylene is adequate for this layer, but you can use Stego Wrap if you want. Each location has advantages and shortcomings that need attention before design and construction begin.
Keeping the kennel clean is also a greater chore, requiring more time and effort as well as making a special water source easily available. For more protection from wind, more resistance to chewing and for greater privacy, sheets of metal or fiberboard siding probably are better,” Berg concludes. Mormons do not worship on Sundays in this building or any buildings like that and have typical congregations of about 150. The problem is that you need a fortune (upwards of $2000) if you want to buy one pre-assembled.
Yes, if the water is managed correctly, it should never be wet for very long, but still, it's outside with the bottom in the dirt. The PT plywood would only extend say, 24" below grade (while the insulation continues to the footing). Insulating the crawl space walls brings the heating ducts inside the conditioned space of the home, saving energy.
But, running something termite-resistant and durable through the insulation creates such a thermal bridge that it seems questionable also. Two years ago when copper pricing went nuts, it became less expensive than copper and is probably more durable. It was covered with an inch and a half of Foamular foam by the foundation contractor as per the drawing specs. The advantages include: continuous insulation, durable substrate, simple installation (Fomo adhesive and screws), waterproofing membrane over all attachments, perfect substrate for thin brick, thin stone and stucco, 15 year system warranty and is manufactured in USA Midwestern states (as opposed to overseas for some of the products mentioned herein).
If you want to keep the crawl space warm, sandwich some rigid foam between the stud wall and the PT plywood.
In this application would you remove the old loose masonry, repair it, cover it with blue board insulation, cover the insulation with lath, fasten the lath through the blueloard and deep into the masonry ?
Treated pine, 1-inch thick, 6 inches wide and 4 feet long, when spaced an inch apart will break the wind and still let some air come through and also provide some privacy. We used the acrylic modified base coat used with Dryvit with a fiberglass mesh emebedded in it. The upper walls have vertical 1x4 T&G western cedar siding over the outside insulation. I've done a number of foundation (not lately) where we parged the foam down to the footer with a finish coat above grade.
Back when I actually built stuff, we always applied a parge coat of latex-modified stucco with joints taped with fiberglass mesh.
The stone veneer turns this transition from a bit of an aesthetic cluge to an architectural feature.
But it was a bit of handwaving at both the aesthetics and the function; it did not look that great and was not very durable.
I have a hard time justifying the benefit of exterior foam when what we're after is saving energy and providing comfort. While I hold my nose in recommending interior framed walls for insulation, in my eastern Iowa location it's the best value to the client.



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