How you can Prepare and Insulate Your Own Attic. How to air seal and insulate your atticso your home fails to lose all the heat it requires to keep you warm this winter. Having your attic up-to-speed with insulation is probably the most cost effect measures to help your home be a little more energy-efficient.
Going to the attic usually means one of three things.
1. Your a decade old and playing hide-and-seek.
2. Your 32 yrs old and you will have yet another valuable heirloom to keep away for ever.
3. Your 54 yrs old and you’ve noticed a wet spot on the ceiling and you’re afraid the roofing is leaking.
Each one of these are top reasons to enter the attic, for the time being, let’s go into the attic to consider the insulation and find out if adding more insulation will be a good – house warming – lower the ability bill – action to take.
Building codes effecting insulation levels did not really commence to take affect until the early 1980’s. If your home was built before 1984, there is a very good chance that your attic has minimal attic insulation. Builders within the 1940’s failed to insulate much of anything, builders inside the 1960’s filled the space in between the roof rafters with about 4 inches of insulation. Builders within the 1990’s installed 8 inches ( R-25 to R-30 ) of loose-fill Combles Perdus and also by the entire year 2000, insulation levels had reached 12 inches ( R-38 ). Today, depending on the homes location, attics are insulated with 16 inches of blown-in fiberglass ( R-49 ), cellulose, or shredded blue jeans.
Yes, shredded blue jeans, I’m serious, the ripped up blue jeans were being installed in a wall as insulation. Attic insulation is power efficient if you live in a cold climate and you’re continuing to keep the nice and cozy in as well as the cold out, or if perhaps you live in a warm climate and you’re trying to keep the cold in and the warm out.
Dark colored, metal fiber appearing insulation is probably rock wool. A well known attic insulation inside the 50’s and 60’s. Fairly effective and never a health hazard. However, insulation granules which can be roughly ¼ inch square that feel like Styrofoam and contrast from mirror shiny to dark colored might be vermiculite asbestos. This really is bad stuff as a result of asbestos content. My advise to attics with vermiculite is to get it professionally removed. Tend not to handle or disturb this insulation without the direction of a professional contractor.
Tip – Don’t mess with knob and tube wiring and don’t handle vermiculite. Call a professional. In case your home was built prior to 1940, you need to be aware of knob and tube wiring. This is clothed bound wiring which is mounted on ceramic knobs because it runs over wood framing structures or runs through ceramic tubes once the wire runs through holes within the framing or building material. This sort of wiring will have to be replaced by new electrical wiring by an electrical contractor before insulating. In the event you insulate directly over knob and tube wiring, the wire can heat up and make a fire danger.
Yet another thing, watch in which you step while in the attic, only step on the truss or rafter framing lumber. In the event you step between the framing members you will likely stick your leg with the ceiling and possess one ugly hole to patch and one heck of the mess to clean up up before the tiny women gets home. Tip – to provide a place to place your feet when you work on sealing the attic floor, take some plywood to the attic that will reach over several rafters.
Tools and materials needed:
1. Basic face mask and light coveralls. Cloth or leather gloves and eye protection.
2. Drop light so you can see what you’re doing and where you’re going. Tip – miner style head lights work good here.
3. If you have a flue or chimney running up using your attic, or recessed lights or ceiling fans, you might need a small roll of light weight metal flashing, 18 to 24 inches wide. One set of tin shears.
4. Can of insulating expanding spray foam.
5. Tube of inexpensive general purpose caulk and a caulk gun. For those who have gas appliances, also pick up a tube of high temperature caulk.
6. Cardboard vent chutesfor placing involving the roof trusses on the same location as each eve vent or bird block. Count how many you will want by counting the quantity of eve or soffit vents from the outside the house. The easiest tool to install the chutes is with a squeeze or tacker stapler.
7. Extra cardboard to use as barriers to separate locations where you may not want insulation.
8. 1/4 inch, #6 sheetmetal screws and a cordless drill. Tip – get self starting and threading screws.
How to prepare the attic before installing insulation:
1. Remove the things you have stored in the attic which have been placed on the heated area of your property where you will insulate. Items stored on the garage can stay. Boards that have been put into the attic to keep items on also have to be removed. Tip – Possess a garage sale.
2. Take the vent chutes and also the tacker stapler and install a chute at every location where it comes with an eve vent. Fit the chute so insulation can not block the vent and a flow of air can move externally, with the eve vent, up from the chute and out into the attic. Attic ventilation is essential for the fitness of your attic.
3. With pieces cut from your roll of metal flashing and also the high temperature caulk, seal across the flue pipe where the pipe comes from the ceiling. Cut one half circular pattern from the side of the metal and install across the pipe like a collar, screw in position using the sheet metal screws by screwing through tabs bent up on the sides in the metal and screwing into the framing people in the truss. Place half collar on a single side of the pipe along with a half collar on the other. Caulk the space between the flashing and the pipe using the high temperature caulk. Tip – whenever using the thin metal, wear gloves in order to avoid getting cut by the metal.
4. Now consider the metal flashing as well as the tin shears and form a cylinder round the flue pipes and masonry chimneys and everything else that carries hot combustion gases. There has to be a two inch air space between the hot flue as well as the new sheet metal insulation barrier. Use the sheet metal screws to hold set up. These cylinders should look like extra tall turtle neck sweaters on a metal neck.
5. In case you have recessed lighting or canned lights ( same thing), locate them in your attic. Older canned lights that you cannot cover with insulation is definitely not IC rated. IC is short for Insulated Ceiling. The IC rating should be clearly indicated on the label linked to the back in the light. Tend not to confuse a UL rating ( Underwriters Laboratory ) using the IC rating. They are certainly not the same. A UL rating means the canned light has a cutoff switch installed that can turn the light off if it gets too hot. An IC rating means it really is safe to cover the canned light with insulation. Air space between the IC rated light and insulation is not really needed. Tip – Now might be a good time and energy to upgrade the recessed lights to sealed cans and IC rated.
If the canned light is IC rated, seal the light where it appears with the ceiling with general purpose caulk – your prepared to install insulation within the light.
In the event the canned light is not IC rated, seal the light where it comes through the ceiling and any holes in the light body with higher temperature caulk. Form a cylinder with the metal flashing and set it around the light body like you will a flue pipe leaving a two inch air space. Hold it set up with the sheet metal screws. This ought to look like a gardener that puts an open end bucket over his young tomato plants therefore they are protected against the cold. The plant is definitely the can light as well as the bucket will be the sheet metal.
6. Locate any exhaust fans, there may be none, several. The fans needs to have a ridged or flexable round duct running through the fan with an exhaust point that puts the exhausted air outside and never in the attic. Use the all purpose caulk or even the foam spray to seal the fan body in the ceiling. Utilize the caulk to seal the holes within the fan body. Make sure the duct is exhausting with an eve vent or perhaps a roof peak vent. Utilize the metal flashing and the foam spray to seal the exhaust duct for the eve or roof vent. Keep the duct with wire or plastic ties to be sure that the duct does not fall down with time. An exhaust fan includes a one way flapper valve inside the exhaust fan body just before it attaches for the duct. Due to the chance, inspect the flapper valve and ensure lint, dust, hair, moisture and gunk has not left the valve stuck open or glued shut. The flapper valve is really a back flow restrictor, keeping cold or warm air from coming back down the duct into your house. Tip- Now would be a good time to replaced older noisy exhaust fans. I recommend an exhaust fan rated at 100 cfm (cubic feet a minute ) or maybe more and on the quiet side.
7. Now go ahead and take can of spray foam and apply foam to every hole where an electric wire, T.V. wire, or telephone wire enters or leaves the attic. Perform the same for your plumbing pipes. There has to be vent pipes running up through the attic floor and out the roof. Foam where pipe comes through the attic floor. Tend not to foam where the pipe goes over the top.
8. Some homes, both older homes and newer, may have open framing spaces running from the attic floor down for the floor below. They are spaces that be a consequence of unneeded space at the end of bathtubs or closets. They maybe the result of irregular framing for instance a triangle formed where a closet meets a hallway that suits a bedroom door. These open chases kkwzjo to be sealed with over just insulation. Take some cardboard, work to match within the opening, lay a bead of purpose caulk across the lip in the opening, lay the cardboard on top the the caulk and screw down using the sheet metal screws. So now you simply insulate over the cardboard.