Why Your Basement is the 2nd Step in Improving Home Performance

“B” is for Basement in the “ABC” Approach to an Efficient Home

A typical basement is often neglected during the construction process. As a result, and depending on the time of year, a substantial amount of air leaks into the basement and it’s either too cold or too moist. This leads to cold floors, drafts, and excess moisture that brings mold and musty smells into our living spaces. Basements are also prone to major water damage and can be the entry point for radon gas. All these factors make the basement an important priority when it comes to home improvement. From waterproofing treatments to insulation and radon mitigation, there are many preventative upgrades available to make the basement a healthier space in the home.

Blog Posts About Basements


Hot upstairs, cold downstairs. What is going on?

Uneven temperatures and uncomfortable rooms in the house Do you have rooms in your house that are too cold during the winter or too hot during the summer? It may be a seasonal problem or it may happen year round. The first thought you may have is that you need a better, bigger heating and […]

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Crawl spaces in flood zones

What to do about insulation, encapsulation, flood vents and more Up till now, most crawl space advice on this website has focused on crawl spaces that are located away from flood zones. Now it’s time to put our attention on how things change when your crawl space is located in a flood-prone area. Getting the […]

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I hate my drafty windows!

It’s a common winter woe. Let’s look at the options for overcoming this icy problem. “The weather outside is frightful, but the fire is so delightful…” ‘Tis the season to sing this classic tribute to hearth and home. But are you really feeling cozy and warm while gazing out the window into a frozen landscape? […]

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Should I close my crawl space vents in the winter?

Making the right upgrades will prevent freezing pipes, keep rooms more comfortable and lower heating costs. The simple answer to the question above is: Yes. Just about anything you can do to separate your crawl space from frigid exterior conditions is a good idea. But I can’t let you off the hook with such an […]

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Ice dams on the roof: a problem you can prevent.

Homeowners have good reasons to be afraid of ice dams. These thick accumulations of ice along the eaves of a roof can damage gutters and roof shingles, while also causing water to leak into the house. The good news is that this distressing damage is avoidable. Check out our slide show to learn how ice dams […]

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Winterizing Your Home

Scared about cold drafts and high heating bills? Here’s what to do about it. Cold drafts. Chilly floors. High heating bills. We all have the same worries as winter approaches. But advice on how to avoid these discomforts varies greatly. Depending on who you’re talking to, you might be led to believe that you need […]

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What’s in store for your crawl space floor?

Material and treatment options depend largely on the condition of your crawl space If you’ve been reading about crawl spaces at, this blog topic won’t come as a surprise. Among the many questions and comments on crawl space topics, quite a few are about floor issues. So let’s take a closer look. Here goes… […]

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Choosing a new entry door

Make the most of an energy-saving upgrade that also has a big impact on curb appeal  Let’s be clear. Replacing an old entry door with a new ENERGY STAR® door will not have the same impact on comfort and energy savings as sealing leaky ductwork or upgrading attic insulation. But unlike many other energy-saving upgrades, […]

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Improve Water Heater Efficiency

Summer is a good time to improve the efficiency of a conventional gas-fired tank-type hot water heater (the kind most of us have). Why summer? Because it’s a wet job that won’t be a lot of fun when the temperatures drop! Water heater tanks often collect sediment (mostly minerals in the water supply) at their […]

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Avoiding Sick Building Syndrome

Improving your home’s indoor air quality will protect family members from invisible pollutants that can cause serious health problems Normally I like to begin a blog with a few sentences that explain the importance of the topic I’m planning to cover. But the best way to emphasize the importance of indoor air quality is to […]

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Lower Your Yard’s Fuel Consumption

Winter is the season we think of when it comes to fuel usage, but a surprising amount is used in summer lawn and garden maintenance as well. Paul Tukey, the author of the Organic Lawn Care Manual, has done the math. He claims that the average fuel consumption per household for a family with a […]


6 ways to cut cooling costs this summer

There’s no need to sweat because of hot weather and high air conditioning expenses Summer heat is here. What could be worse than sweating all night long in an upstairs bedroom that your air conditioning system can’t seem to reach? How about being shocked by a huge spike in your electric bill because of prolonged […]

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Downsize your lawn to save energy

It’s that time of year again. The weather is getting nice just in time for you to spend hours and hours getting your lawn back in shape.  Seems a bit crazy – as if we were human hamsters — especially when you realize there are few other countries in the world that lavish so much […]


Landscape to Save Energy and Improve Comfort

Most of you know that evaporation of moisture from your skin makes you feel cooler. That’s because evaporation takes heat energy, thereby cooling the air wherever it takes place. Turn on a sprinkler on a hot day and the area surrounding it will feel cooler. Trees act as gigantic sprinklers as their leaves transpire (release […]

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Craftsmanship in the Attic

What’s so difficult about an attic insulation upgrade? Plenty. For just about any kind of job you might imagine, there are distinct differences between doing the work and doing the work REALLY WELL. This rule applies across every profession, from cleaning houses to managing stock portfolios. It’s worth mentioning in the field of home energy […]

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