Helpful? 0

Two layers of poly sheeting?

Would it be okay to put two layers of poly under a basement slab? The layers would consist of 4" of gravel, one layer of poly sheeting, one layer of XPS foam board, another layer of poly sheeting, and then the concrete slab.

Would this be beneficial or would it be overkill? I am building in central KY if that has any implications. Thanks for any input.

Asked by Morris Farris
Posted Mon, 03/17/2014 - 20:11
Edited Tue, 03/18/2014 - 04:01

Tags:

5 Answers

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
1.
Helpful? 0

Morris,
It's better to put the polyethylene in just one place. Ideally, the poly should be installed above the rigid foam and directly under the concrete.

The reason you don't want a second layer of poly under the rigid foam is that, if the water table ever rises, you don't want to trap water near the rigid foam. You want the assembly to be able to drain when the water level drops.

Answered by Martin Holladay, GBA Advisor
Posted Tue, 03/18/2014 - 04:33

2.
Helpful? 0

Thanks Mr. Holladay. I asked this in a different forum, and I would like to ask you too. I found a good price on some 10mil poly. It states it is made from virgin resin, but I do not think it is ASTM E 1745 rated. Does that make any difference since it is below the slab?

I forgot to ask another question. Should the poly also be used for my attached garage slab, or would the gravel be enough? Thanks again.

Answered by Morris Farris
Posted Tue, 03/18/2014 - 06:48
Edited Tue, 03/18/2014 - 06:50.

3.
Helpful? 0

Morris,
I'm not sure whether the ASTM E 1745 rating actually matters for residential work. In my experience, polyethylene that is protected from exposure to sunlight doesn't deteriorate, but I welcome the opinion of any GBA readers who know more about ASTM E 1745.

Q. "Should the poly also be used for my attached garage slab, or would the gravel be enough?"

A. Polythylene is cheap. You should absolutely include it under your garage slab; you will never be able to go back later and install it where it belongs if you change your mind. And even if you think that a garage slab doesn't have to be as dry as a house slab -- and in my mind, I think that a dry garage floor is a good thing -- remember that garages are sometimes remodeled into living space.

Answered by Martin Holladay, GBA Advisor
Posted Tue, 03/18/2014 - 07:05

4.
Helpful? 0

Thanks again. Very good points about the garage. I think I will go with the Grip Rite 10mil poly. A 20X100 roll for $135 seemed like a good deal to me. When I place it under the slab, should the poly come up onto the walls 4" so that it covers the slab edge as well?

Answered by Morris Farris
Posted Tue, 03/18/2014 - 08:13

5.
Helpful? 0

Morris,
Q. "When I place it under the slab, should the poly come up onto the walls 4" so that it covers the slab edge as well?"

A. Either way. It's a vapor barrier, not an air barrier -- so as long as it covers at least 95% of the area under the slab, other details don't matter much.

Answered by Martin Holladay, GBA Advisor
Posted Tue, 03/18/2014 - 09:14

Other Questions in General questions

In Green building techniques | Asked by Bruce Howe | Sep 1, 14
In General questions | Asked by Jin Kazama | Aug 28, 14
In Green products and materials | Asked by Brett Michaels | Sep 1, 14
In Green building techniques | Asked by jordan Saunders | Sep 1, 14
In Energy efficiency and durability | Asked by Derek Roff | Sep 1, 14
Register for a free account and join the conversation


Get a free account and join the conversation!
Become a GBA PRO!