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What is the easiest way to remove blown in insulation?

What is the easiest way to remove blown in insulation?

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  #1  
Old 12-19-03, 01:53 PM
georgekopf
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What is the easiest way to remove blown in insulation?

I want to install rolled fiberglass insulation, but before I can do that I want to remove the old blown in stuff. Any advice would be appreciated. I'm thinking that a rake and a garbage bag is going to be time consuming and painful.

Thanks.

George Kopf
 
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  #2  
Old 12-19-03, 02:51 PM
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George-
Why remove the old insulation? Unless it's gotten wet, it still works. Loose fill insulation does settle after several years and you lose some of the "R" value but most folks just have more blown in. If you really feel you must remove the loose insulation, I'm afraid that a dust pan and lots of trash bags is the answer. Wear a dust mask 'cause it's messy!!

If it's fiberglass insulation, wear long sleeves and cover as much skin as you can or you'll be itching for days. This is definitely NOT a job for a summer day, either.
 
  #3  
Old 12-22-03, 06:31 AM
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Hi George,

I agree with Dave, leave the iinsulation you've got & add your rolls above it. However if you do have to remove blow-in insulation, I suggest a shop vac, you'll have to empty the canister alot, so you'll still need the trash bags, & do wear long sleeves & a dust mask.
 
  #4  
Old 12-22-03, 07:29 AM
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Well, the shopvac does work, but the one time I tried it I decided it was more trouble than it was worth. They're difficult to horse around in the attic and you have to empty them every few minutes. They're also noisy and the exhaust stirs up phenomenal amounts of dust.

You can try leaving the vac outside the attic, but now you're dealing with adding hose extensions and having to clear the hose when it plugs up.

Just for fun, you might call an insulation contractor and ask if anyone does this commercially? Lots of companies blow the stuff in........maybe someone has a rig to suck it out. Might be worth a few phone calls to find out.
 
  #5  
Old 01-29-04, 04:49 PM
georgekopf
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Here's what I did.

I used a rake and 45 gallon garbage bags to remove 80% of the insulation. Then I went back over with the vacuum and removed the rest. (I purchased a used NSS commercial vacuum and attached a 50' hose). I had a friend outside who emptied the can and cleared debris out of the connection point. It took the two of us two days. I returned one more time with the vacuum and removed several hundred pounds of gravel, nails, wood chips, etc.. I think that I saved around $1,600 by doing it myself and I did a more thorough job.

When I was installing the new insulation, I was very glad that I had spent the time and effort to clean out the debris. The installation was easier and I believe that my vapor seal is better. Additionally, I put Kraft faced R-13 between the joists and then non-Kraft faced R-19 perpendicular to the joists. The result is fantastic. Nice warm house and my heater is almost never on.
 
  #6  
Old 01-30-04, 07:21 AM
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Quite a while back, a buddy who has what I call an AFB business (Anything For a Buck - he'll do weird jobs when nobody else will) had the job of trying to decontaminate a house that had had an infestation of racoons in the attic. He rigged up an electric leaf blower/vacuum and about 20 feet of 4" flex conduit connected to about 40 feet of 4" sewer pipe to remove the insulation. He reduced the pickup nozzle down to 2-1/2" to try to keep from clogging the exhaust. We ran the discharge into a 6.5' x 16' trailer on which we had built a chicken wire cage. To be sure, it created quite a bit of dust around the trailer but that was mitigated by having me continually mist it down with water. It was a wet, stinky mess to haul off but it worked pretty well. It clogged up a couple of times but was easily blown out using the blower function. I think it helped that we sloped the rigid sewer pipe downhill towards the scuttle hole. He did go back with a heavy duty shop vacuum with a 2" hose and crevice tool to get what the leaf blower wouldn't pick up in the nooks and crannies (especially around electrical wiring) but I bet he got 95% of it with the blower/vac.
 
  #7  
Old 06-25-09, 01:04 PM
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removing old insulation blown in

i used a snow shovel and really huge plastic bags was a mess so wear eyewear mask and old clothes they should outlaw that stuff lol
 
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