Fiberglass Insulation. 

Step by step instructions on installing fiberglass insulation..... 

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   Installing fiberglass Insulation

 

Four out of every five homes build before 1980 have a less than recommended amount of insulation.

Back when oil cost only a few dollars per barrel neither builders nor homeowners gave much thought

to installing the stuff. But insulating your home today can easily reduce both your heating and

cooling bills by 20 to 40 percent. And with heating and cooling often accounting for nearly half the

utility bill, insulating your home makes good economic sense. Adding attic insulation is by far the

easiest and most cost effective step you can take. It is critical to remember that sealing up air leaks

and insulating go hand in hand. For starters, it’s much easier to seal attic air leaks before insulating.

Secondly your insulation will be much more effective when it doesn’t have to fight air infiltration,

after all, insulation is simply thousands of little pockets that trap air.

 

Installing Fiberglass Insulation

 

  Do it right to save $$, save energy and stay warm

 

Insulation- silently hidden in your walls, no moving parts to fix, is a material you probably spend

precious little time thinking about. Then along comes subzero or sweltering weather, a three digit

utility bill or chilly drafts, and you start thinking about it a lot! At home, you ponder whether it’s

worth the time and expense to add it to your ceiling, walls and basement. At the store, you ponder

which type, thickness, width and density to buy. And when you install it, you wonder just how good is

good enough. We asked insulation manufacturers and installers which questions they field most and

which blunders they see most. Following are six things they think you should know.

 

 

 

 

1. Sealing up air bypasses before adding attic insulation or you’ll be wasting money.

Attics are one of the easiest and most cost effective places to add insulation. But you’ll increase the

effectiveness of insulation substantially if you first seal up air bypasses around chimneys, plumbing

vents, wires, interior walls and exhaust fans, places where warm, moist interior air escapes into the

attic. Heat has a natural inclination to both rise and migrate to colder areas. Combine these two

tendencies and you can see why air bypasses can reduce the effectiveness of attic insulation by 30 to

70 percent. You can track down bypasses by lifting existing attic insulation and checking for dark

patches of moisture or dust.

 

Before installing or adding attic insulation, take these steps.

 

 

 

 

1. Use caulk and expanding foam sealant to close air gaps around pipes, ducts and electrical wires

where they enter the attic.

 

 Cut and fit strips of 24 gauge sheet metal between the masonry chimney and the surrounding wood

framing. Use high temperature caulk to seal the flashing where it meets the chimney. * Install weather stripping

 around the perimeter of the attic access opening, then use screws hooks to pull the hatch tight against the

 weather stripping. Glue rigid extruded foam insulation to the top of  the hatch.

 

 

2. Around electrical boxes, notch, rather than compress, the batten then tuck the cutout behind the box.

 

 

3. You Probably don’t need Kraft- face insulation.

Kraft paper, the asphalt impregnated brown paper facing available on insulation is rarely called for

these days. When insulation was first developed, it was only an inch or two thick and the attached

Kraft facing was stapled to studs to keep it from sagging. Insulation today is so full bodied and fills

stud and joist cavities so completely that it resists settling even when walls have been purposely

vibrated in tests. Kraft paper does act as a vapor retarded to slow the  movement of interior moisture

through the wall cavity and insulation. But for a thorough job, especially in bathrooms and other

high moisture areas, a continuous 6-mill plastic sheeting vapor barrier is much more effective. Kraft

paper still serves the purpose of temporarily holding insulation in place on horizontal or sloped

surfaces. And when you’re retrofitting insulation in the floor of a crawlspace installing the Kraft

faced insulation paper side up provides an adequate vapor retarded. Kraft paper and its underlying

asphalt adhesive are flammable and should always be covered with drywall or other fire resistant

material. Another important point. Except in hot coastal regions, insulation should be installed with

the Kraft paper or plastic vapor barrier on the interior side of the wall. In hot regions, vapor

barriers are often eliminated or positioned toward the outside of the stud wall. If in doubt, consult a

local building inspector.

 

 

 

 

 

 

4. High density insulation can pay off.

Insulation is rated according to its r-value, or resistance to heat loss. The higher the r-value, the

higher the insulation value. Standard fiberglass insulation has an R-value of about 3.5 per inch of

thickness this provides an insulation value of R-11 for 2-4 walls and R-19 for 2-6 walls. But if you’re

serious about energy savings. You can buy better performing products. High density types of

fiberglass insulation, with more fibers and air space per square inch, offer R-values of up to 4.25 per

inch. Some provide R-15 for 2-4 walls and R-21 for 2-6 walls. There’s also high density insulation for

ceiling and attics.

 

 

5. How much insulation is enough?

The first 3 inches of insulation you add to a bare ceiling or wall will yield huge savings. Adding

another 3 inches will increase energy savings, but not to as great a degree. Adding more will give you

a diminishing return on your investment. But remember that insulation reduces air conditioning cost

too.

 

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6. When you insulate attics and crawlspaces, you’ve got to vent them too.

Since insulation changes the way attics and crawlspaces breathe it’s critical that you maintain or

install proper ventilation. At first, it seems odd to add insulation for warmth and then purposely

create ventilation holes for cold air to enter. But if you don’t do this, you’re setting yourself up for

moisture problems. When you add insulation to attic rafters and attic floors, it’s important to

maintain at least a 1 inch continuous air space between insulation and roof sheathing, from eaves to

ridge. This air space flushes out moisture. It also helps maintain a cold roof, which prevents ice dams

from forming in the winter and excessive heat from damaging shingles and increasing cooling cost in

the summer. The biggest mistake homeowners make with installation is to install it so it blocks the

flow of air at the eaves. The best way to avoid this problem is to install inexpensive air chutes to keep

the space open. Newly insulated crawlspace also need proper ventilation. The standard procedure is

to insulate the ceilings of unheated crawlspaces and the walls of heated crawlspaces. To reduce

moisture migration if there’s no slab, a 6-mil polyethylene vapor barrier should be laid on the ground

in both cases. At least 1 sq. ft. of ventilation should be installed for each 1,500 sq. ft. of floor area.

 

 

Installing Fiberglass Insulation

 

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