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Penthouse Condo in Florida - Raising Ceiling - How to keep it cool?


bejulled's Avatar
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07-27-16, 08:04 AM   #1  
Penthouse Condo in Florida - Raising Ceiling - How to keep it cool?

I've recently bought a condo in in 16-story apartment building in South Florida. The building was built in 1971. Once moved in, my husband and I decided to take off the popcorn ceiling, and discovered that there is 3 more feet of ceiling space above the original drywall ceiling. So, we are planning to take off the original ceiling and use the total height with this extra space which will now be 11'.

We are on the top floor of the building, in the hottest summer months in Florida... is there any kind of insulation, or paneling, or something, that can be used to keep the apartment cooler.

Please, any advice would be so much appreciated.
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Pilot Dane's Avatar
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07-27-16, 08:52 AM   #2  
Yes, you can install another drop ceiling but higher up and insulate above it. Quite often insulation is applied underneath the roofing above which is something the condo association might consider the next time the roof needs to be replaced.

 
bejulled's Avatar
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07-27-16, 11:41 AM   #3  
Thank you, Pilot Dane. In terms of the insulation, what do you advise in terms of the width of it? Also, what kind of insulation?
many thanks for all advise!

 
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07-27-16, 03:50 PM   #4  
And how do you plan on dealing with all the wiring, and plumbing that will then be exposed, how are you going to mount ceiling lights?
That's also going to add to the load on the HVAC by adding more SQ. FT of living space.
Plus all the added work to finish the walls.
What's your reasoning to do this?

 
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07-27-16, 05:16 PM   #5  
"width of it"??? I don't understand your question.

As for what type of insulation that will partially depend on you build your new, higher ceiling. Traditional fiberglass batts and blown in are an option. Sprayed foam and rigid foam board is also an option.

Getting rid of the existing ceiling and going with exposed concrete, wiring and ducting could create an interesting industrial look. Coming back and installing another ceiling to accommodate insulation will likely get you back to something similar to what you have now. It will be a lot of work and money for a couple feet of ceiling height.

 
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07-27-16, 07:36 PM   #6  
Hi bej,
My concern would be staying in compliance with the original building plan. That plan was created by an architect and approved by local officials and probably the fire marshal. High rise accommodations have a lot of hoops to jump through. I didn't see any sprinklers, but a remodel might trigger their consideration.

Although that is the roof over your top floor quarters it is also the roof over everyone below. My guess, purely a guess, would be a set of drawings from the same architect who designed the building (or other) should be submitted to the HOA and then to the local authorities for approval.

Bud

 
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08-05-16, 06:14 PM   #7  
Re:

If you guys saw what i saw you would understand why I am bypassing the HOA and the architects. Once we opened up the drywall, we found so much garbage up there, empty pipes (not connected to anything..garbage!), which perpetuates my belief at just how sloppy everything was made. They literally left trash up there, not to mention stuffed newspapers in the drywall as "insulation".

The building was built in the 70's so I have no hope at actually being able to reach any of the original architects. you guys have no idea how things here work in Miami, in terms of dealing with property management or with the City. Its corrupt and hopeless, unfortunately, and living here for 20+ years has taught me that.

Thank you all for your responses and advise. I am still in the process of removing the drywall/popcorn ceiling.. and with the 3' of space above, we are looking to make it into something like an "industrial style" loft/condo.

pipes will be exposed, but working on hiding the wiring. so far, its only in the kitchen area, so its manageable.

 
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08-06-16, 04:38 AM   #8  
Yea, ripping out the drop ceiling and going with exposed pipes for an industrial look is relatively easy. Your question though was how to add insulation.

 
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08-06-16, 06:25 AM   #9  
Concrete deck in Florida, I see no reason to add insulation. Can you feel or get a remote temp sensor and get the temp of the concrete deck?


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08-06-16, 06:39 AM   #10  
I would check the temperature of the deck above, but don't see how removing the ceiling will give you a cooler atmosphere. If there is inordinate heat coming from the ceiling now, it will still be coming in, but will not stop at the ceiling.

 
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08-06-16, 07:04 AM   #11  
But houses in the south have traditionally had high ceilings so the heat could rise and not stifle the living area. Still need to get a read on the ceiling temp so you know what you are dealing with and whether or not removing the current ceiling will help or hurt.


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