Cool Products – Basement Development Innovation – DRIcore Smartwall

Building Science is now telling us that the traditional method of perimeter wall wood framing, batt insulation and polyethylene vapour barrier for residential basement developments leaves much to be desired from a “home-health” point of view.  External forces such as Hydrostatic Pressure can cause moisture in the adjacent soil to be drawn through porous concrete foundation walls and slabs by way of capillary action. Despite the prevalence of current water mitigation techniques (Foundation wall damp-proofing, polyethylene vapour barrier, etc.), water can still be drawn into your basement, most notably through the unprotected bottom of your concrete foundation wall footings. This is a phenomenon known as “Rising Damp”.  Due to these and other factors, homeowners have often been faced with unknown moisture building up behind their basement walls, promoting the growth of unhealthy mold…not good for the home, not good for the occupants!

Enter DRIcore, with its’ new SMARTWALL System.  Designed to replace standard perimeter wall framing, insulation and vapour barrier methodology, this unique new system consists of:

-        2’x2’ interlocking DRIcore Subfloor panels with a built-in air space underneath that allow moisture migrating up through the concrete floor to dissipate without affecting the flooring (optional, but recommended component).


-        2’x8’ (or 10’) interlocking wall panels with built-in Vapour Shield Technology that eliminates all air pockets and creates an effective insulation R-Value of R-17.


-        Tapeless joint technology allows DRIcore “Patch-Pro” to be applied directly to the panel joints without tape.  Simply apply, sand, paint.

-        The SMARTWALL Panels have built-in Easy-Wire Channels for feeding electrical wiring, as well as specialty panels with pre-installed switch & plug boxes.


What a great idea! Not only is there a significant time savings with a SMARTWALL installation, but this highly superior system also adds value by defending against moisture incursion, which in turn promotes “home health” quality and helps retain your home’s long-term worth. Considering our mutual goal of a warm, dry, comfortable basement living space, we recommend taking a close look at SMARTWALL! Go to for full detail on how the SMARTWALL System works, then call Channel Custom Builders for a no-obligation basement development estimate using the SMARTWALL System.

Energy Efficiencies for Your Home

In response to growing interest in clear information about decreasing the long-term cost and carbon footprint of home energy usage, we have added a very comprehensive page to our website (click on ENERGY). This thought provoking page explores the “why” and “how” of:








When planning to build a new home or renovate an existing one, it is becoming increasingly important to consider the viability of one or more of these efficiency methods, as well as to join the growing legions of homeowners now concerned with “greening-up” energy consumption.

Building envelope technology is primarily mandated by Building Codes, and now goes a long way toward ensuring a tight seal in every new home, but with Solar, Geothermal and Wind, you have options for further improvement of home energy efficiencies. Implemented individually or in a specifically designed hybrid combination, these clean, renewable sources of energy are the way of the future. Channel Custom Builders can help shed light on these somewhat complex and unfamiliar issues. Contact us today to arrange for a complementary In-Home Consultation.

Problem Solved – Custom Closet Organizers & Designer Doors

If the closets in your home still have a single shelf with a hanger-rod running from one end to the other, you may be in serious need of some organizational expertise!


Today’s internal organizers may be as simple and reasonably priced as the wire shelving systems (in white or titanium finish) that accommodate for single & double row hanging, open shelving towers (some with baskets), drawer/open shelf cabinets and tie/belt/jewellery racks.  Or, consider the much more attractive upgrade of custom, built-in cabinetry.  From flat or wood-grain melamine to higher –end wood species, this type of cabinetry offers a more attractive, finished look that also delivers the form/function essential to any closet storage space.

Finish off your classy new look with custom bypass door panels or a unique “barn” door!


Cool Products – Freestanding Bathtubs

If you think back to when tubs were made of copper, filled by hand with buckets and much resembled horse watering troughs, then to the iconic cast-iron claw-foot tub and indoor plumbing, much has changed in the world of bathing! But what was old is new again, with the modern day version of the Freestanding Bathtub.

Freestanding tub/bathroom renovation in the Calgary community of Lakeview Village

Freestanding tub/bathroom renovation in the Calgary community of Lakeview Village

No longer made of copper or cast-iron, most of these current tub offerings are of one or two piece formed acrylic, which are much lighter to handle and warmer to the touch. There are many attractive design choices that reflect traditional and contemporary styles, but the common theme is soaking comfort! And for a gentle, relaxing massage, add in a soothing bubble-jet feature. Plumbing fixtures can be highly decorative when installed outside the tub in a floor-mounted “stand” configuration, or internally plumbed with deck-mounted taps, filler and even a telephone spray head. It takes some planning and co-ordination between plumber and flooring installer to ensure the kind of professional “fit & finish” desired, but this extra effort will be worthwhile.

Freestanding tub/bathroom renovation in the Okotoks community of Downey Ridge

Freestanding tub/bathroom renovation in the Okotoks community of Downey Ridge

If you are curious about the world of relaxation bathing, have a look on Channel’s website “Shopping” page for links to a variety of manufacturers’ products. Or give Channel Custom Builders a call about the bigger picture…your new bathroom, kitchen, basement renovation, addition or completely new home plan!

Freestanding tub/bathroom renovation in the Calgary community of Hidden Valley

Freestanding tub/bathroom renovation in the Calgary community of Hidden Valley

“‘Tis The Season” Series – #3 – Spring


SPRING (Mar/Apr/May) is the season when many of you start thinking “outside-the-box”.  That is to say, the OUTSIDE of the box, as in exterior renovations for your homes!  To upgrade from that tired, “box-like” appearance, there are many attractive, energy efficient and eco-friendly options to choose from.

A main or second level addition would certainly add dimension, but unless you are in need of more interior space, simply replacing worn, outdated cladding will go a long way to updating your home’s look, while providing a tighter “seal” against the elements.  A covered front porch or a spacious rear deck could enhance your outdoor living areas and, when detailed with stonework and metal/glass railings, could contribute a lot to the visual “interest” of your home’s exterior.  Start at the top and work down – roofing, soffit/facia, windows/doors and cladding…what will it take to both improve architectural appeal AND save you money on heating/cooling, while avoiding the use of materials that may be harmful to the environment?  There are great on-line resources now that will allow you to compare various products prior to making those final choices.

Once you have developed an informed sense of what you think will work for your exterior upgrades, don’t hesitate to consult with design professionals and contractors (think Channel Custom Builders) who specify and work with these products every day.  Teamwork will always deliver the best results!

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Bus Benches – Channel now has street-cred

One of the many ways we try to introduce our renovation & new home design/construction services to you is through Bus Bench Advertising.  As you travel around Calgary each day, you may now spot one or more of our bench locations that are intended to catch the eye and spark your interest!

So, here’s the thing…in the manner of “Where’s Waldo”, if you can put a street or avenue location to one of the photos below and contact us to book a complementary in-home consultation for a project you are planning, we will install a free Radon Detector in your home during our consultation visit (go to or online for the dangers of Radon in the Calgary area).  And as an added bonus, you will receive a $500 credit off the cost of your project, if you should choose to book with Channel Custom Builders.

All good, right? So jump in, have fun, get to know us!