Of Footing Insulation….and My New York Mets

Footing Insulation? Whatttttttttttt????

Yes people, in order to go forward we have to go back. And welcome back I might add to another installment of the Hobbit Hollow Construction Blog! Let’s just get a few incidentals out of the way before we begin shall we?

We shall.

These New York Mets. They’re really driving me crazy. We lost last night to those Kansas City Royals. Another 8th inning debacle last night. I mean the wheels really did come off in the eighth. I don’t know how many of you are baseball fans out there so I won’t go on a rant about this game but I needed a chill pill the size of a baseball by the time this one was over. The Mets are up 3-2 in the top of the 8th. Everyone knows that’s  not enough runs to give you a comfortable lead (Especially with these miserable Royals)….and of course it wasn’t. The clincher was in the bottom of the ninth with two Mets on first and second and one out. They hit into this ridiulous double play to end the game on a base running mistake.

But as the late Yogi Berra said, “It ain’t over till it’s over.” And it ain’t over. Although with the Mets down 3 games to 1 it’s an uphill battle from here on in. I’ll be watching. Bob called me up this afternoon just to break my chops. He watched the game with Steve who is a crazy Met fan. He had to stay with Steve over night cause Steve’s on suicide watch. Some of the Met fans are really nuts. Bob texted me a picture of Steve after the game.


Steve after Mets lose game 4 of the World Series
Steve after Mets lose game 4 of the World Series

I’m telling you every Met fan out there was done after that loss.

Yet hope remains…..while company is true.

On the home front Terence had his last game up in Roscoe, New York Saturday afternoon. (Slightly over 100 miles from home, for those of you wondering.)They lost in a really good game 28-20. Two evenly matched teams for the most part. It was tied up for most of the game with good offense and defense for both teams. Pawling had a couple of good chances but came up one touchdown short. It was really exciting to watch. The Editor and I had a good time.

So back to Hobbit House building. I went over to the house for about an hour and a half before we left for the game just to get a few of the minor details done. So as I stated earlier  we have to finish insulating the footings. I know I’ve mentioned this before but we’ll just do a brief refresher to help you understand why we are doing this.

So the earth is hovering around 50-60 degrees or so beneath our frost line over the course of the year.. In order to keep this cooling temperature out of our house and be able to maintain a constant  68 degrees we insulate the footings. This provides a thermal break between the house and the surrounding ground. This also eliminates the dampness that you might get in your basement. Most homes have damp basements. This is a direct result of having no thermal break in the interface of the soil and your foundation wall. Just think of a cool glass of water sitting on your kitchen table. It sweats. (It has to do with dew points and the like which can get a little confusing to describe so we’ll bypass that if you will.) But this sweating happens to foundation walls as well (especially in the spring and summer) if they are not insulated. Therefore we have to do a decent job insulating these walls and footings. I hope you all got the glass of water reference. The water in the glass would be the soil and the outside of the glass would be your foundation wall. Get it? Got it? Good.

So I went over to the house with the sole purpose of finishing off the top of footing insulation and the associated drainage that goes with it. Pretty simple stuff really. Just a picture before I move on.

Beginings of final layer of footing insulation.
Beginings of final layer of footing insulation.

So what I decided to do was install the insulation on top and tuck it under the Mira drain that I have against the wall. Once I had two pieces of insulation down I cut another piece of Mira drain and tucked it under as well. I folded the Mira drain over the edge of the footing and led it into the gravel bed I have that is all the way around the footing which drains to daylight. This keeps my drainage plane intact so we keep water away from our humble Hobbit Home. Check it out.

Drainage plane runs into gravel bed under footing.
Drainage plane runs into gravel bed under footing.

I threw a couple of blocks on top just to make sure everything stays in place when they backfill.

And so here it is…November. I’m looking forward to Thanksgiving and having everybody home.  That will be nice.

Take care and lets go Mets!!!


PS: I added a few more pictures to “Hobbit Hollow In Pictures” if you care to take a look.





Leave a Comment