Installing Insulation Correctly
LESLIE: Tom in Texas is looking to save some energy dollars by adding insulation. How can we help you with the project?
TOM IN TEXAS: Well, I was wondering which is better: to add the blow-in insulation or buy the rolls and put it between the rafters.
TOM: Well, it depends. Are you going to be using this attic for access?
TOM IN TEXAS: Yes.
TOM: Storage and the like?
TOM IN TEXAS: Correct.
TOM: And you have a traditional attic frame or is it trusses?
TOM IN TEXAS: Attic frame.
TOM: So a traditional frame?
TOM IN TEXAS: Yeah.
TOM: Well, I like to use the rolled insulation because it is a little bit easier to handle. Now, first of all, you have to remember that most attics should have 19 inches of batt insulation or 22 inches of blown-in insulation and your ceiling joists are certainly not that high. So, in order to use it for storage, you’re going to have to dedicate a certain area of the attic just for the area that you want to use for storage and the rest of it you’ll need at least two layers of insulation. Put the first one down in between the joists and put the second one down perpendicular to the joists and make sure that you’re using unfaced fiberglass batt insulation so that the insulation breathes because if you allow it to trap moisture it won’t be effective.
TOM IN TEXAS: OK. Alright.
TOM: But that’s the way I’d do it. If it’s an area that you’re really going to spend some time in and access, I think that the batt is probably the best. If it’s an area where it’s completely inaccessible, then I think it’s fine to go blown-in.
TOM IN TEXAS: Alright, excellent. Thank you.
TOM: You’re very welcome. Thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT.
And in Dallas, that will not only keep him warm in the winter but also cool in the summer; very, very critical to do.
LESLIE: Mm-hmm. I mean it really works both ways.
TOM: Yep, exactly.