Loft Insulation Installation Guide Loft Insulation Installation Guide
Insulation installation in the loft of your house can help you reduce your heating expenses with as much as 20 percent. Insulating is a relatively straightforward process that will not take you more than one day, regardless of the kind of loft you have or the type of insulation you choose to use. Below you will find the basic guidelines you have to follow for the successful completion of the task.
Step 1 - Choose the Insulation Material
Currently, there are hundreds brands of insulation sold on the market, all of which fall into one the main categories below:
Blown Fiber Insulation: Blown insulation (also known as cellulose insulation) consists of millions of recycled paper threads, which are distributed via an electric blowing machine and a hose attached thereto. To operate properly, the machine must be constantly fed with cellulose material.
Blanket Insulation: This type of insulation is usually made of glass fiber, foil-backed felt, or mineral fiber. This is the most popular kind of insulation, available in rolls of different thickness, length and width to fit the customer's specific needs.
Granular Insulation: Although relatively easy to apply, granular insulation should not be used for particularly drafty lofts as it tends to be blown about by high winds. It is manufactured from cork granules, exfoliated vermiculite, or mineral wool. Provided that your loft is sufficiently sheltered, it is advisable to use granular insulation for any loft parts that do not permit the installation of blanket insulation (e.g. because of irregularly spaced joists, outstanding pipes, or other obstructions).
Sheet Insulation: This is the ideal insulation for the ceiling, especially if you intend to use the loft. Sheet insulation uses mineral fiber or fiber glass and is available in different sizes (in most cases, you will have to use only thin sheet of material).
In the steps below, cellulose insulation and fiberglass batt are used, although other options are also possible.
Step 2 - Remove Old Insulation
Put on protective goggles and a dust mask. Tear down any loose material from the ceiling and loft floor. Clean the area of any dust or dirt with a vacuum cleaner.
Step 3 - Install the Cellulose Insulation
Turn the electric blower on, take the hose and cover the floor of the attic with cellulose insulation (do not go over the top of the framing members). You will need someone to supply the machine bin with cellulose during the installation.
Step 4 - Install the Fiberglass Batt
Unroll the fiberglass material on a solid surface and, if necessary, cut to size. In case you need to make a cut, use a razor knife; when cutting, the insulation paper should be facing upward.
Place a fiberglass piece into the cavity between the ceiling framing. The fiberglass side should be first. Take a stapler and attach the paper flanges of the insulation to the framing.
Repeat the operation for the whole ceiling.
Step 5 - Finish the Installation
As a final procedure, you can spray foam insulation in any hard to reach areas. Be careful, though, not to apply a coating thicker than 1 or 2 inches since the foam tends to expand after application.