Hiding Basement Ductwork involves Building Straight and Level Soffits
By Mark J. Donovan
|When developing plans for finishing a basement the inevitable question comes up on how to hide basement ductwork. Frequently basement ductwork is sitting below the floor joists and running perpendicular to them. Thus hiding basement ductwork can sometimes become somewhat of a challenge. This said there are a couple of options you can consider for hiding basement ductwork.
The simple, yet not very effective solution is to simply paint the ductwork the same color as the ceiling and go for that industrial look basement ceiling.
This type of solution really doesn’t hide the ductwork, but instead makes it less conspicuous to the eye when you walk down into the finished basement.
Typically a soffit frame is constructed such that it creates a U or L shaped frame around the ductwork such that it ties into the overhead floor joists. The framing of the soffit should be done on standard 16 inch centers to aid in the hanging of drywall. The U frame construction is required if the basement ductwork is not near a wall. The L frame soffit construction is used in the event the basement ductwork is near a wall edge.
|The real art of creating a soffit frame to hide basement ductwork is making it level. If it is not level, you will end up seeing peaks and valleys in the drywall. Thus it is important to use a level and a chalk line to create straight and level soffits. In addition, use a miter saw to make the cuts, as the more accurate the cuts the less likelihood of un-level soffit frames.
With these simple tips you should be able to create a straight and level soffit such that you can nicely hide your basement ductwork in the ceiling of your remodeled basement.
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