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Insulation,framing, attic* Draft* question??


biketrax's Avatar
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Join Date: Jan 2008
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CT

02-13-08, 11:14 PM   #1  
Insulation,framing, attic* Draft* question??

Getting a nasty draft from the attic ceiling and walls.

Everything is wrong! First off I dont have good insulation and the insulation that is there, is 50 ys old and put in backwards.
2nd its on a 1 sq foot plywood ceiling panels with a ton of cracks. So I know what I need to do on this section. vapor barrier plus new insulation between rafter and maybe even top off with styrafom sheets etc.

My dilema is this the adjacent existing interior walls (and some exterior) go up in the attic and are left open to the attic, So basically the cold air funnels down and goes into the walls. Should I close these open walls with stuffed insulation and cap with wood. Is this enough am I overlooking anything else I should do to improve these drafts?

 
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02-14-08, 10:54 AM   #2  
You are right about closing off those walls open to the attic. It must be done. Dont however just stuff fiberglass down there. It wont help much at all to stop drafts. Instead take a piece of 2 inch pink foamboard or wood like you said and make a cap. Then you have to use either caulk or better yet sprayfoam on all the seams around the cap to seal it off. That will stop the warm air from leaking out and cold air decending there.

 
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02-14-08, 11:03 AM   #3  
About the ceiling though. Where are you located? Depending on where a vapor barrier might not be needed. What does the ceiliing look from the room side? Is it painted? If you have cracks in the ceiling try to see if you can use sprayfoam to seal them up. If they are too much I would use extruded foamboard (dont use white styrofoam) in the joist bays with the cracks and use sprayfoam to seal the edges. Then think about blowing in cellulose insulation as it seals way better than just fiberglass batts. You might be able to blow in insulation to those exterior walls as well from the attic before you cap them off.

 
biketrax's Avatar
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02-28-08, 08:28 AM   #4  
I am located in CT/NY border

The hotter the woodstove is downstairs the more cold air comes down the stairs in the house! LOL but not funny.

Doobs Thanks for the information!

As far as the blow in insulation the cellulose, is that the kind that hardens up. I noticed Lowes rents a machine that I can blow in the loose insulation kind. Whats your take on that kind?
I think your advice on sealing is probably key!
I may buy some of the expanding foam cans for the sealing of the tops of the walls!

 
Perry525's Avatar
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FL

02-28-08, 09:46 AM   #5  
Cold air comes downstairs.

You can easily solve this problem by cutting a hole under or close to your stove, with a 4 inch pipe going direct to the outside.
Not only are you pulling cold air in from everywhere
you are burning air that you have already paid to heat. Not Good! A direct pipe to the outside will provide free cold air.
Note: A fire that burns fast, burns cold. You must have some way of controlling the amount of air that moves through your stove.
The next thing, before you do anything else, go round and block every hole in your home. Far more heat is lost by drafts through holes, than anything else.

 
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02-28-08, 01:08 PM   #6  
The blown-in cellulose for attic insulation doesn't have any 'glue' mixed in with it because it is supposed to settle and fill in voids (that get missed with fibergflass batts). The dense-pack blown-in cellulose for wall insulation does have glue to hold it in place, that's why when open walls are being sprayed, the setup also adds a little water to the mix at the gun nozzle. The blown-in cellulose available at the box stores would be an ideal addition to your attic.

I agree with Perry that adding an outside air source right at the stove would help to alleviate drafts from combustion air being drawn from doors, windows and any other leaks. But, if this is your only source of heat, you probably have a large temp difference between the heated stove air and the cold upstairs air; this alone will generate some pretty noticeable cold drafts as the cold air returns to be heated.

 
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04-26-08, 06:09 PM   #7  
adding attic insulation

My attic gets extremely hot here in North Carolina. There is blow in insulation, in parts of the attic I can see the rafters. There is a gable vent at each end of the attic and last summer I had an attic fan installed, set to run when it gets to be 90 degrees up there. There looks to be soffits as I understand them. It's a small attic and gets incredibly hot, the second floor of the home is very hard to cool off, even with a new, properly installed A/C. I used a roll of insulation with no paper backing to insulate the pull down stairs to the attic. Should I add another layer of insulation? The house was built in '92 and it looks like the blown in insulation has settled. Can I just roll out blankets right over the top or do I need to staple them down...or is just blowing in more insulation going to help? The other problem very well could be the windows. They are original to the house and, altho double pane, insulated glass, look to be pretty cheap. New windows? Seal them up with plastic first to see if that's the problem?

 
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