Replacing Insulation in kitchen backsplash

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  #1  
Old 01-29-14, 05:57 AM
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Replacing Insulation in kitchen backsplash

My wife and I decided to refinish part of our kitchen. Part of this process included removing and old tile back splash and replacing it with a new glass mosaic. During the demo of the old tile, it was apparent that I could not salvage the old dry wall to which the existing tiles were bonded, so I ripped it all out and currently have the studs, electrical and plumbing exposed.

Some of the insulation around the kitchen sink side of the back splash (exterior wall) doesn't appear "full" and there is no foam around the window. Prior to any of this work I had noticed considerable drafts coming from certain areas around this wall.

1 - Should I be replacing/adding insulation within the areas that currently do not have any? Most of the missing areas of insulation appear to be around electrical boxes, and I am not sure what code is when it comes to placement of insulation around these boxes.

2 - Should I placing insulation (expanding foam I'm assuming) around the tight spots of the window for additional insulation? If so, which product works well and is relatively inexpensive?
 
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Old 01-29-14, 08:46 AM
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Compressed fiberglass insulation does nothing to insulate the wall.
There is no reason the insulation was not in full contact with the boxes. Looks like someone was to lazy to make a cut in the paper.
Expanding foam around the windows and any holes in the electrical boxes.
 
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Old 01-29-14, 08:57 AM
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They make foam in a low expansion formula for windows so it doesn't bow out the frame and bind the window. "Dap" is a zero expansion I have used, but I have also used the other brands listed for windows and doors. The actual insulation factor around windows is minimal, very small area. but the air leakage can be significant. I'll suggest Roxul for all of the cavity fill needs and then you have plenty to piece in around the windows. Finish the air sealing with caulking. Foam doesn't like cold weather so not sure how well it will perform filling those gaps.

The bad news is, from what you are seeing, you can't expect anything better in all of the places you can't see.

Bud
 
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Old 01-29-14, 09:16 AM
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If you notice below the window there is a void which leads down the wall. Right behind the top of the countertop is some plumbing and electrical wires. Is it OK to foam this area as well, or do I want to avoid embedding these types of things into foam?
 
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Old 01-29-14, 10:19 AM
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When adding insulation around plumbing you want to be sure you don't isolate the pipes from their source of heat. If encapsulated in insulation you want the majority of the insulation on the cold side. As for foaming it solid, I'll let the contractors answer that.

Bud
 
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Old 01-29-14, 10:53 AM
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It looks like the insulation has sagged a little. This can happen when the On Center positioning of the framing is off from standard 16". The insulation will Slide under its own weight. It should have been stapled to the studs to prevent this. I would not go crazy with foam, some people think it is the do all end all easy fix. It has its place for tight areas and tough to access. but not IMO for general use withing framing. Kraft Faced insulation would be the way to go. I seemed stumped that you have 2x4 exterior walls, I would have thought 2x6 exterior minimum for CT. Is your house Brick sided? I'm sure your pipes are properly protected, you can add some insulation to the weak area's that are not "full" as you put it. Lightly pack and fill the area, do not stuff and Cram it full. As Joe C. mentioned, crushed insulation has little value.

If you are purchasing a convenience roll of faced insulation, save the money on spray foam for the windows. Take some of the fiberglass insulation and peel it back so that it is thin. It will peel apart like a pillsbury flaky roll will in layers. Use a putty knife (butter knife if you don't have one) to slide the insulation into the void in the window framing. Start at the top and work your way down framing. Feel for cold spots to see if you have missed any. You are more likely to feel drafts with stained trim than with painted. Painted trim usually is caulked to prevent air leaks.
 
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