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Wed May 03, 2006 2:17 pm

Don... yes, it is curious. One other strange thing is that hole is actually mostly filled in. If I reach over the foundation wall it only goes down around a foot and a half... just below where you can see in the pic... perhaps putting in a vapor barrier and pouring some concrete there would really be a good idea for radon mitigation purposes.

The wall on the left connects to the interrior of another part of the basement. I don't think I'll mess with it, since the other side is finished off nicely, although the possibility certainly does exist to put in some neat inset shelving.

Wed May 03, 2006 2:43 pm

I guess it is a sort of small crawl space and it seems strange they wouldn't have dug ti out at the same time they dug the rest of your basement. That said my parent's 1956 vintage house in Cherry Hills Village had a similar room under their kitchen. It was accessed via a door next the the boiler in the finished utility/laundry room. It wasn't usable space and I suppose it had the access door so the kitchen plumbing and wiring could be serviced? Don

"crawl space"

Wed May 03, 2006 2:45 pm

There really isn't anything there that would need to be serviced, so I think I'll frame in a shelf area, then seal it off. (but may go ahead and at least lay some plastic down in there first and throw some concrete in there.

Wed May 03, 2006 2:49 pm

My crawlspace under our family room has a poured concrete floor! I was surprised to discover that but it definitely eliminates the moisture issue and seeing as I have a radon issue it definitely sealed over a large area that would have required attention now. :D Don

Thu May 04, 2006 1:37 am

Was coal heating still common in the 1930's in your area? We have a similar space in our cellar with a door in the top that opens onto the front porch floor (like a trap door) and this was a coal shute, but our house was built in 1898. Your closet might have been the coal room.

Thu May 04, 2006 10:48 am

And even if your house never had coal, it may have been a "design feature" that was included by the builder, so if the buyer wanted a coal room it was already there.

The permit people weren't much help

Thu May 04, 2006 3:03 pm

I decided to go ahead and apply for a permit (and plan on doing it for future projects as well)...

There is no code for insulation or sealing the wall before drywalling it, and the most helpful thing I could get was "it might b ea good idea"...

SO... I have the permit, and have now washed down those walls, scrubbed off all of the efflorescence (sp?)... and treated them with drylok etch... I plan on painting them with Drylok tonight, then moving on to prepping them for drywall.. which bring sup my next question...

For insulation, I found a mildew resistant foam board to use right up against the wall, then I plan to furr or frame it out for the drywall...

The walls are not at all even, and I'm thinking it might be easiest simply to frame out a regular wall with 2x4s... Just nail & glue a footer right to the floor and a header to the ceiling, and frame out a regular wall.

Thoughts on this??



coal room

Thu May 04, 2006 3:04 pm

I don't think so, only because the coal chute is still there, but it's on the other side of the basement where the furnace is... who knows.

Fri May 05, 2006 10:02 am

Hi Dan,
Framing out with 2x4s is what a friend & I did in his basement renovation in Brighton. We used concrete nails & a driver to secure the 'footer' to the floor. Don

Fri May 05, 2006 11:27 am

Use a pressure treated piece of lumber for the footer of the wall, just to be safe.

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