[This is the Special Report 11 in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) Format. Our
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found ways to greatly increase our comfort, decrease energy costs in a
big way, and still save money on installation. The experts discuss
popular insulation materials, application techniques and performance.
Six pages, revised and updated with new reader tips, web links and
Excerpt from Report:
- BIB (Blown-in Batt) system
- Differences in walls and ceilings
- Environmental illness and insulation
- Rastra block
- ICF (Insulated Concrete Forms)
- Protecting foundation foam
- Real savings in alternate systems?
- Spray-in-place polyurethane and Icynene
- Biobased foam
- Design adaptation for ICF homes
"...Q: What do you suggest for a good job?
A: Been here for twelve years. Recommend: do B.I.B. ("Blown-in Batt") system in walls. R-23 for 2x6 walls. Patented.
Depends on the house. I can give you an estimate if I had plans for two
hours. I bid standard for 2x6 R-38 attic, R-19 in the walls. And an
option to a blown-in system. We are smaller, and we are quality
oriented. Before we got here, Hansen had a monopoly. We have brought
the prices down. Installation - neat batts, no compression, cut behind
outlets and wires. One thing is doors and windows are major loss.
Ceilings is second. Third is unfinished basement or crawl space. Fourth
is in exterior walls. You can do the subfloor in between the joists. Or
you can do the foundation walls. You need ventilation for moisture, but
we are so dry. You can put a 6-mil insulation on the ground to keep the
water out. If you do the joists only, you should wrap the copper pipes.
A: Quality workmanship filling all the voids. Cellulose blown
in ceiling R-38. Walls R-19. Friction, plus Visqueen. That's the best
vapor barrier you can get. Tyvek is a wind barrier. Where there's
overhang, you have an R-30 batt in the floor. Garage separate. Most
houses don't insulate garage. Insulation kit in garage door. You could
just do the walls now, and not do the attic over the garage.
A: Hansen uses BIB, we use cellulose sprayed in with high pressure nozzle.
Forty percent of heat loss is due to air infiltration. Tie it up.
Sometimes they frame the corners so they are so tight, you can't put
anything in it to insulate it, unless you happen to be there when it's
made. Also put Barrier Shield or Tyvek on the outside. Cost
effectiveness is super. Before windows go in. We don't install the
Tyvek. We provide FOB to the job site, and General can put it up. We
also do urethane foam, it goes on the inside of your stud walls 1/4
inch thick. Seals up the home completely. We do it in place of Tyvek
sometimes. If we foam, we put an R-19 batt in. The other is a blanket
blown in. It goes around your boxes and corners, tight. But there is no
way of measuring density. With Vaults, make sure you have a 2x10 space
that will accomodate an R-38 batt."...
Sample Reader Tip Excerpts:
built 2,071 finished square feet finished, and 2,071 in the basement. I
cherry picked the marble for the bathroom, insulation, rain gutters,
sheetrock taping, the leverage worked well. I show the vendors actual
Vern & Catherine P.
currently remodeling a 25 year old house. It's been a fairly good
process. We took out all the old insulation, and blew in cellulose, and
it makes a big difference."
Jody & Andrew P.