Performance Guidelines for Basement Envelope Systems and Materials: Final Research Report

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TypeTechnical Report
Series titleResearch Report (National Research Council Canada. Institute for Research in Construction); no. RR-199
Physical description193 p.
Subjectbasements, envelope performance, functions of the envelope, guidelines, design and specification, construction details, life cycle costing, below grade, below ground; Basements and foundations
AbstractA survey of new home warranty programs across Canada showed that the combined action of water and soils on basements was responsible for most major basement failures in new homes in 1994 and 1995. Frost action on basement walls was cited as a contributing factor in 40% of the failures; swelling clays (resulting from strong fluctuations of wetting and drying in clay soils) were responsible for another 36%; and frost action on the footings, a high water table and the presence of water-borne soluble salts contributed another 9%, for a combined total of 85% of all failure cases surveyed. This survey led the National Research Council (Institute for Research in Construction) to undertake a basement research project, which was guided by a large industry steering committee broadly representative of the issues. After completion of the research, this comprehensive publication on basement guidelines was developed. The guidelines will facilitate the design and construction of cost-effective basement systems that will achieve satisfactory performance in a cold climate like Canada's. They are intended for technical decision-makers in the home building industry along with material manufacturers, home warranty agencies, building officials, as well as educators. The guidelines are divided into six parts: 1) performance requirements; 2) envelope system selection; 3) materials and equipment; 4) critical design details; 5) quality assurance; 6) cost-benefit analysis.
Publication date
PublisherNational Research Council Canada
AffiliationNRC Institute for Research in Construction; National Research Council Canada
Peer reviewedNo
NRC numberNRC-IRC-17808
NPARC number20326459
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Record identifierf9b9b3fa-9c35-410c-959a-21aec89ad609
Record created2012-07-18
Record modified2017-07-05
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