Insulation

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  #1  
Old 11-30-03, 09:35 AM
Holly T.
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Insulation

Can somebody please help me??? My husband and I bought a home built around 1920. We are trying our best to improve the home. We have an upstairs dormitory area that was never completely finished and would like to do so. It has the typical dormitory shape style ceilings and now has old sheet rock that is coming down. I think we need to remove the sheetrock and insulate the space between the roof and the ceiling. There is no insulation between the roof and the ceiling now. How should we go about insulating???? And is it better to allow the space between the ceiling and the roof to stay open. There is a ventilator in the one end of the upstairs. We are confused, please help.

Sincerely,
Holly t.
 
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  #2  
Old 11-30-03, 05:15 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: NY
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Ok, lets see if i can help. If you completely block off that space with the insulation, the roof won't have the ability to breathe and you can damage the wood over time. If you don't insulate that space, you'll always be cold upstairs and have a high fuel bill.
What you need to do is install "Rafter baffles". These foam baffles get stapled in place between the rafters all the way from the eave to the top of the roof. You can then insulate over it. The baffles will allow air to move freely under it making the roof breathe. You should have a ridge vent on the outside going across the span of the ridge and some vented soffits under the eaves so air can flow in, under the baffles, then out the ridge vent.
 
  #3  
Old 11-30-03, 09:50 PM
Holly T.
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Insulation

Thanks for your quick reply Dregg. I have a couple of questions for you. The baffles sound interesting, however, let me explain my complicated roof situation. On either side of my upstairs dorm area I have attic crawl space and the roof gets smaller going towards the eaves. I don't have any breathing vents in the eaves because the roof ends with only wood and roof hangover and the other side has a wrap around covered porch. The only vent I have is to the front of the house in the A pitch part of the roof. At the other end they never installed a vent which would have allowed "cross ventilation". The upstairs obviously can't breathe because the old sheet rock I am taking down is covered with mildew. The upstairs does have a window which we have replaced with a casement, and a small door dropping off 2 stories with no porch. ?? Weird, huh? The ventilation opening is above the window but there isn't one above the door. Shoud we try to add one?? Also if I use the baffles first then staple the insulation will that work? and should the baffles and insulation be continued inside the attic crawl or is the attic floor insulation sufficient??? I was planning to install insulation in the walls between the attic and the room to help with cold.
 
  #4  
Old 12-01-03, 06:09 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: NY
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Ok, i think i have an idea of your situation. You should have a lil' triangle space above your dorm ceiling making it a minature attic so to speak. If thats the case, having a ridge vent along with soffit vents is the best approach but since thats not feasable for you at the moment, i would recommend having a gable vent on both sides of the house that would vent into that lil' triangle area. You can staple the baffles between the rafters going up into that area so the air can travel between the plywood and insulation. As for the small crawl space, you should have a way for fresh air to get in there. That way, air will enter that crawl space, travel up under the baffles, and out at the gable vents.
As for insulating that crawl space, i would recommend insulating the walls to the dorm area, and the floor. Don't bother insulating between the rafters in that crawl space because the area isn't a living space and will be cold anyway. Just insulate all the dorm walls and ceiling while using the baffles as to not block airflow into the overhead space.
I hope what i said is understandable. Good luck.
 
  #5  
Old 12-02-03, 06:06 PM
Holly T.
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Insulation

Dear Dregg,

Thanks for your great ideas and help!! I never thought about using baffles, what a good idea!

Sincerely,

Holly
 
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