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abkent's Avatar
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10-08-02, 10:54 AM   #1  
New Construction

I am building a new house. I wanted to get general information about insulation. House is in Central Utah. High desert -- cold winter (sub-zero), hot summers (100+) with low humidity (typically ranging: winter 60-65% and summer 35-40%).

Exterior walls are 2x6 construction. Planned to put R-19 Kraft Face.

Blown insulation in attic to R-38.

I have an interior wall that has a dryer on one side and a pantry on the other. What insulation would be recommended to put in that wall to keep the pantry from getting too hot?

Also, what is a good insulation to put between rooms for sound insulation?

What are some "tricks of the trade" for a better insulated house?

Thanks,

abkent

 
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10-08-02, 11:44 AM   #2  
http://www.ornl.gov/roofs%2bwalls/facts/index.html this site will provide you with all you want to know about techniques in the construction industry on insulation, foundations, radiant barriers and moisture control. Excellent site if you are building a new home.

 
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10-17-02, 05:41 PM   #3  
rbisys
Greetings,

Your falling into thr "R" value trap.

2x6" walls with FG will probably never pay for themselves in savings. Also the colder it gets the more heat energy that flows and radiates thru FG. In the ceiling there is no creditable info available that "R" 38 ceiling will out perform "R" 19 ceilings. There is some good evidence that ceiling FG actually increases a/c costs.
In sub zero weather ice can actuially form in the FG in the walls.

Use what they use up in the Artic, radiant barriers (RB).

Use a three layer material in the ceiling, two in the walls and wrap the out side walls with a perforated RB to protect from air infiltration and to insulate the studs.

If you use FG your house will use about 42% more winter energy and about 200% more a/c energy than a RB house. You will also have condensation and mold problems with the FG. Non with RB.

Be sure to uise a good ridge vent sysrtem See: cor-a-vent.com

Thank you for considering my opinion.

 
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10-18-02, 08:41 AM   #4  
Are Radiant Barriers all you say they are?

rbisys,

What are the sources for your numbers? 200% energy saving on A/C? Sounds too good to be true. If it was that good, wouldn't everyone be doing it? The DOE study (http://www.ornl.gov/roofs+walls/radiant/rb_02.html) says that:

"The tests to date have shown that in attics with R-19 insulation, radiant barriers can reduce summer ceiling heat gains by about 16 to 42 percent compared to an attic with the same insulation level and no radiant barrier."

Note that this is attics with R-19 already in place. Not just RB by itself. The study continues:

"THIS DOES NOT MEAN THAT A 16 TO 42 PERCENT SAVINGS IN UTILITY BILLS CAN BE EXPECTED. Since the ceiling heat gains represent about 15 to 25 percent of the total cooling load on the house, a radiant barrier would be expected to reduce the space cooling portion of summer utility bills by less than 15 to 25 percent. Multiplying this percentage (15 to 25 percent) by the percentage reduction in ceiling heat flow (16 to 42 percent) would result in a 2 to 10 percent reduction in the cooling portion of summer utility bills."

I can't believe that the rest of the savings you claim will be made in putting RB in the walls.

It also says that radiant barriers become less effective as dust settles on it - increases the emissivity and decreases the reflectivity. Aren't most attics covered in a layer of dust?

The most interesting part of the study were the examples of cost savings. Example 2 shows the savings for a cold climate area. It says that adding more FG insulation is more cost effective than adding RB.

At the time this paper was written very little testing had been done in cold climates or in the arid southwest. Both describe my location/climate. If you say this is what they use in the artic, I guess I have to believe you, I have never been there. This study was done in 1991, so if you have more current information, I would love to see it. Now if I lived in a humid area, I would be concerned about mold. I lived several years in Houston and had to deal with several problems with moisture in my walls and attic. That coupled with the mild winters and scorching summers made RB look very attactive. Where I live now the humidity seldom reaches 50%. Normally is in the 20% range. And winter heating bills are a bigger concern than summer cooling.

From the research I have done, it doesn't appear that RB is the best way for me to go. It might be a nice way to supplement my FG insulation in the attic for hot summer days to get that 2-10% savings.

But I am not the expert here. I'll believe your claims, if you can back it up with hard facts.

I look forward to your response,

abkent

 
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10-19-02, 01:48 PM   #5  
rbisys
Greetings,

Thank you for your reply and welcome to the wonderful world of DOE and FG deception.

I'll answer best I can, item by item.

I didn't say a 200% savings, I said that you will increase your a/c energy usage by about 200%. I could have said that you would SAVE about 50% on a/c.

The DOE tests where on retrofit, NOT new construction stand alone installation of MULTI LAYER RB. Keep in mind that about 95% of summer heat gain is radiant energy. FG is about .02% mass and 98% air space. You need tests to figure that one out? The "R" factors you rely on for FG are based on C236. A rather meaningless tests that the FG industry manipulated into the system to justify their existence. If FG was required to be tested with installed conditions FG would not be on the market. RBs technically have no "R" factor because they REFECT heat energy. There is no resistance. However you can use emissivity factors for both materials and it becomes immediately apparent that FG is next to useless. Why do you think a house becomes unbearable duing summer with the a/c off. On a 95 deg. day a FG house can get up to 110% inside. You call that insulated? A RB hose will usually be about 3-5 degs warmer than out side temps depending on the design and usage. Isn't it interesting that DOE does not tell you about emissivity values?

Yes dust does settle on "horizontal" surfaces. The highest effect of dust that I have seen reported was a 20% increase in emmisivity (ONE SIDE) which means the RB is still far superior to FG. ALSO, I recommended a three layer material in the ceiling. The dust can only affect the top layer. Remember they are talking about single layer material. I know of no conditions where dust will settle on a vertical RB surface, especially in an enclosed wall system.

Adding FG to FG is BS. PERIOD. When you add an "R" 19 to a "R" 19 you get a calculated 7.5% increase in efficency for winter, MAYBE. Since you only lose about 20% of the winter heat thru the ceiling the savings, if any, will never justify the cost. For summer the mass holds more heat energy which is tranfered to the house. More energy more a/c costs.

By the way DOE tests do not to my knowledge include the affects of moisture which damatically incease the heat flow. Since moisture can exceed 15% and the increase of flow is about 5% for every 1% of moisture. figure it out. Why doesn't DOE tell you about moisture?

There is no condesation with multilayer RB, therefore no mold. Besides mold will not grow on pure foil. RBs are unaffected by humidity or lack of, they reflect and humidity does not enter in.

You mentioned that you are planning to use kaft backed FG. Have you ever seen kraft backed FG after it has been oin the walls for about 10 years. Whaty do you think that moisture does to the paper? And what does moist paper attract. Why doesn't DOE tell you that. If you think that the kraft is a vapor barrier, think again. It's useless. In fact, back in the 80's the FTC made the FG companies stop claiming it was. Now you see it listed as a VAPOR RETARDER. What the hell is a vapor retarded? Please find permability ratings for vapor retarded, I would love to see them.

FG now claims that FG does NOT CAUSE MOLD TO GROW ON IT. Absolutely true, BUT, like a petri dish and bateria it loves to grow on it. I'm sure you have seen the mold related horror stories on national TV. The insurance companies DO NOT pay for restoration of mold infected buidings. You like the smell of mold? How about infants dying from mold posioning?

FG also claims that FG will not absorb moisture. Absolutely true. It suspends it until the water weight is too heavy and it sinks to the baseplate and rots it out.

The ? you should be asking yourself now is, why do the feds allow this deception to exist and not protect the home owner, and worst of all continue the lies. Good ? .

The answer is 10s of billions in tax dollars every year from decieved home owners like you and me. THINK. Cheap fuel prices and a vast industry to compensate for enery inefficent buildings.

Thanks for considering my opinion.

 
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10-21-02, 06:16 AM   #6  
rbisys,

Thanks for your reply. A few more questions...

The RB systems you are talking about. Are they strictly a foil product?

If a tight house keeps down convection losses. RB keeps down radiant losses. With a RB system, what keeps down conductive losses?

Who is a good resource for RB materials and their application? Manufacturers, distributers, ...

Thanks,

abkent

 
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10-23-02, 07:07 AM   #7  
I think he prefers if you bought the RB from him.

 
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10-23-02, 09:19 AM   #8  
Zathrus
While I can appreciate the theory behind why RBs work, the reality is that nobody has proven anything close to what rbisys states. Not even the RB vendors or the industry association (http://www.rima.net). And without any kind of scientific testing it's his word versus, well, everyone elses. Including non-profit conservation groups like Southface (http://www.southface.org).

I have previously butted heads with rbisys, and on calling him on some of the bogus claims he's made (which, to be fair, he hasn't repeated since) he claimed I was a fiberglass seller. I'm not. I'm a computer programmer and have never worked with or for any company in the fiberglass, construction, or energy industries. He, on the other hand, is most certainly selling RB materials. And does so in virtually every post on this board.

I'd like to see a real independant (or as close to that as you can get) study of RB effectiveness. I do not doubt that rbisys's customers have seen a decrease in power bills as a result of installing RB. I'm not questioning that radiant energy contributes to cooling costs. But the claims being made here have no numbers behind them. Go ahead and claim a vast governmental conspiracy. I'll take that into consideration with all the other alleged governmental conspiracies.

Seriously. Provide numbers and studies proving the point, or it's nothing more than handwaving.

 
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10-23-02, 05:24 PM   #9  
rbisys
Greetings,

Haven't heard your gentle denial of truth for so long that I thought you had died and gone to heaven.

I can see by your inability to see what the feds are doing to us, not only in the energy consevation field, that you must be rather young and haven't learned to wear your pants backwards to save time and make it easier for their intrusion.

I take it you didn't ck out the fact that the US senate banned RBs from government jobs in the late 50's because the RB companies where taking too much business from the fiber industry, or, that in 1981 the US senate stop daily funding to the FTC until they rescinded a new regulation requiring all insulations be tested in the installed condition. If FG is so good then why the intervention. Talk to anyone who has been in the energy consevation business, particularly equipment and you'll all kinds of horror stories. If those tests had been insituted you would not see FG or cellulose on the market today.

Do you understand the philosophy of money, BIG MONEY? Look at the fasicist turn of events in this country and you'll understand.

I don't particularally care whether you believe me or not you are not important to me, the world is. If as an individual you are not willing to personally experience the values of RBs or see the major problems with FG and others, then so be it, that's your fantasy world. I'll stick with mine.

The DOE and similar fed web sites are loaded with misleading comments aboput RBs. If they are so interested in saving energy why don't they build several homes in varios parts of the country and evaluate the results of different materials? Offical answer, we don't have the money. I suggested to you earlier to contact DOE and ask for tests showing installed condition tests. Did you do it, no. The problem here is that you have so indoctrinated that you can't bring yourself to find the truth. Embarassing, isn't it? The truth that is.

As I said before go to the Marks' Mechanical Engineering Handbook and look up the emissivity charts. There is a formula there that you can use to find the truth. If you can't figure the formula let me know by e-mail and I will send you a copy.

You know, its funny I don't ever recall anyone accusing me of hawking RBs on the web except you. I have always given sources for people to check out and hold open the opportunity for them to purchase from me if not available locally. Don't you think it's just great that the web gives one individual the opputunity to educate so many people and their ability to find out for themselves, and hopefully change a horrendus wrong?

Right now I'm involved with a situation with a customer that made a mistake that irritated a local count code commissioner. His is trying to make the customer remove the RB and replace it with FG. His argument is that RB are not listed in BOCA and therefore cannot be used in his county. My, my lookie here neither is FG, cellulose or foam listed either. But hark, here is a RB material listed. Which he denies as valid. I've been communiocating with someone else who seems to have that denial virus. What he's going to get, along with the other commission members is a BIG expensive law suit. If FG and others are so good, why aren't they listed in BOCA or others. Because they have to submit installed value tests. No more FG.

As far as tests, there are many comparitive tests available. I do not have the ability to record and send them right now.

Call Superior Radaint Insulation in San Diems, Cal and they can send you what you want.

By the way, considering all the crap I've have to put with for the past 28 years, do you think I would be spending my time doing this if there wasn't a valid reason and I didn't have the desire to make a difference. Oh yes, just how many millions do you think I'm making off the web?

You like high energy bills and the serious heath problems that go along with these materials, then so be it. The problem with being screwed for so long is that after a while you don't feel it or believe that it's happening despite bleeding to death.

Thank you for considering my opinion.

 
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10-25-02, 06:49 AM   #10  
Zathrus
I note that instead of actually providing information you resort to ad hominum attacks on me. Fine.

Yes, I've done my research. And while Superior Radiant Insulation claim the majority of heating from radiant energy (which most likely is the case), even they only claim a maximum 25% reduction in energy usage, while you claim 50% or more. Every RB page I've found has claimed savings in the 10-25% range, which just so happens to jive with what the non-profit and conservationist organizations say.

I don't have an inherent problem with RB's. In fact, I'm still considering installing one in my home instead of adding additional insulation. What I do have a problem with is your quoting of numbers that do not agree with what the rest of the industry (and I'm talking about the RB industry here, not your hated FG industry) states.

Oh, and I'll state right now that I do apologize for some of the more vehement remarks I've made.

But you've not yet proven your case.

 
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10-27-02, 06:17 PM   #11  
Why do you think a house becomes unbearable duing summer with the a/c off. On a 95 deg. day a FG house can get up to 110% inside.

I've never had that happen to me I go to work in the morning, close all the windows and drapes turn off the A/C and come home to a house that is quite comfortable perhaps 80-82 inside while it's 95 outside. I always thought it was my fiberglass insulation along with my attic fan set at 85* that kept the house so cool.....

 
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10-28-02, 11:59 AM   #12  
rbisys
Greetings,

I see your in Il. Chicago area and a shaded house, right?

 
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10-28-02, 08:13 PM   #13  
a shaded house, right?

Nope Full sun after 10 am till 6 even a southern exposure

 
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