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Interior storm window for basement

Post in 'The Green Room' started by mole, Jan 8, 2013.

  1. mole

    mole Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2008
    Messages:
    157
    Loc:
    Western NY
    Here's sort of a copycat idea that was inspired from the recent threads here on interior storm windows... I have a real old single pane basment window that was leaking really bad. To seal it, I took a scrap piece of 2" thick pink foam insulation board and first cut it to the dimensions of the window opening. Then I whittled the edges with a sharp knife until I got a nice tight fit into the window recess. Next I removed the foam board and cut a new "window" (12"x20") out of the center of the foam board. I bought two pices of polycarbonate sheet (about 14"x24", maybe) at HD and glued the outer perimeter of the polycarbonate sheet to one side of the insulation board with silicone sealant. Then I overlapped some spare foil tape (maybe 3" wide) over the top of the polycarbonate where the glue line is to give it some quick strength and hide the silicone. I did the same with the other side of the polycarbonate. I pressed my new window into place and caulked it with silicone. As you can see from the pictures, it's not pretty to look at, but it did an EXCELLENT job sealing it up. The window stopped sweating on the inside, and all of the draft is gone. Thought somebody else with an unfinished basment might find this useful. I forgot to mention earlier, but I also had to cut out holes for my sump pump hose and my wood boiler pressure relief piping, both of which pass through the window, which I modified years ago. This foam board was a simple solution to an otherwise messy problem, since I could cut around the obstacles and then reglue the cut-out pieces.

    Cost: $20 for the glazing, $4 for the caulk, about 3hours work, and 3 beers for the laborer :)

    Thanks for the idea! window 3.jpg window 2.jpg
    chazcarr, milleo and pen like this.

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  2. TradEddie

    TradEddie Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2012
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    754
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    SE PA
    I just finished doing almost the same thing, but on the outside. All I did was cut the polycarbonate to the exact size of the insect screen, and caulked it in place where the screen would go. This was inspired by my son breaking one window last year, I replaced the glass with Lexan, glued the frame back together then put another sheet on the outside of the frame for good measure. Much less expensive than ripping out an entire wall to install a new window since this was in a finished part of the basement.
    I have some concerns about condensation in summer, so I'm going to watch that carefully.

    TE
  3. mole

    mole Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2008
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    Loc:
    Western NY
    Yeah, it was much faster than replacing the window in my case too!
  4. TradEddie

    TradEddie Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2012
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    754
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    SE PA
    I wasn't sure how effective this was until last night. I never got around to installing lexan on the window on the left. It was 12F last night, and that's ice on the inside of the left pane, while the temperature of the pane on the right was about 49F, same as the rest of the basement walls.
    Great weather for finding air leaks.:)
    TE



    0122132307.jpg
  5. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    Eastern Central PA
    ANy thought of insulating those stone walls?
  6. mole

    mole Member

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    Loc:
    Western NY
    Yeah, the basement walls are a work-in-progress. The section you see in the pictures is the only section of wall where I haven't done anything but repoint the bad mortar between the stones. Being over the sump pump, and the lowest corner of the basement (yes, the floor slopes, by design for drainage,) its a damp corner. In the rest of the basement, where its more dry, I built either partial or full interior walls, spray foamed, and I'm sheetrocking them with the green board stuff. That corner where the window is is also next to my wood boiler, and I didn't want any combustibles near the boiler or flu pipes, so for lack of a good plan on how to deal with those issues, I left it uninsulated. Suggestions?
  7. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    I have an area like that and i was thinking about covering it first with cement board so any water coming down the wall(as it does after heavy and extended periods of rain)will stay behind the cement and drain into the perimeter drain channel and not come in direct in contact with insulation board and studs.
  8. Bret Chase

    Bret Chase Minister of Fire

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    Maine
    my suggestion would to be to leave the stone open, so the mortar can be maintained... and then get the highest R-value you can stuff between your floor joists, and then use at least a 6 mil poly as a vapor barrier... and seriously consider adding controlled ventilation to the cellar space...
  9. mole

    mole Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2008
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    Loc:
    Western NY
    Thanks for the suggstions. I just need to get my a** in gear and get it done.

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