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Air sealing your home..

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by md2002, Sep 14, 2012.

  1. IHATEPROPANE

    IHATEPROPANE Minister of Fire

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    In MA you inly pay somewhere around 10%....my cost to have the work done was over $3500. Out of pocket was $400.

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  2. bill3rail

    bill3rail Feeling the Heat

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    One way or another, you will pay for the program. I would rather have an expert come out and look at everything and suggest what I can do to save on energy bills.

    I wonder if Nassau County or NY state has any program like this?

    Bill
  3. MCPO

    MCPO Minister of Fire

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    western Ma , close to NY state border
    Do you think Obama did?
  4. Harvey Schneider

    Harvey Schneider Minister of Fire

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    If it is feasible I would change the recessed light buckets to the airtight variety. It also makes sense to use the buckets that are rated for insulation contact. Then if you do a reasonable job of sealing the edge where the bucket meets the ceiling you have virtually no air movement. The buckets of choice are marked "ICAT". Puting a flammable like styrofoam over a bucket scares me. If you don't know what you are doing you could create dangerous problems.

    Heat loss is driven by temperature differentials. If the attic is warm heat will not leave the living space as fast. Warm attics, however, create problems like ice dams. Somewhere you have to insulate the roof from the warm living space, and it doesn't much matter where.
    Moisture is only a problem where it condenses into liquid on a surface. That will be where the warm moist air meets a cooler surface.
    I recently had my roof replaced and the contractors insisted that the current thinking is to close off gable vents so that the flow from soffit vent to ridge vent would not be disrupted. What he cared about is keeping the roof cool. This laminar flow also keeps warmer moister air from contacting the underside of the roof and causing condensation.
  5. DaveGunter

    DaveGunter Member

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    coastal maine
    Those particular vents are from owens corning called "raft-r-mate"(http://roofing.owenscorning.com/homeowner/accessories/ventilation/raftrmate.aspx). They are the only ones that I know of that have a flexible end that is to be bent down and stapled to the top plate instead of just hanging out into the soffet, you can't see the flexible end in the picture it is down in insulation. This allows you to block the cold air coming in at the soffet from going straight into the insulation, they direct the venting air up the rafter past the point where the insulation ends which is where you want in anyway. They work great, i ripped out all of the vents that were sloppily installed when my house was built and re-fitted the "raft-r-mate". It was an amazing change, I used to get FROST on the sheet rock at this spot in the interior of my house. It is a bear of a job, pulling back the insulation and fitting the vent into the rafter spaces, tight space with all kinds of nails to poke you, while I was at it I used spray foam to completely seal the edges of the vent to the rafter so that no air would infiltrate into the insulation. They also extend up the rafter enough to allow blown in cellulose to be added without the worry of the cellulose making it out into the soffet and clogging up the vent. Adding blown in cellulose in my next project.
  6. Countryboymo

    Countryboymo Feeling the Heat

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    I am not saying put little six pack coolers over them. I am talking about the bigger ones so they have a pretty good air space and provides room to trim to fit . I purchased air tight recessed light trims through ebay at less than half the price of lowes or home depot. In some areas you have to buy special 'hats' that cover the light assembly that are flame retardant and are 10 bucks each or more and still have to be trimmed to fit. The coolers are a couple bucks each and both need to be caulked in place but some caulk does not like styrofoam so that is a factor. I have run the cooler idea by two codes inspectors and both had no issue with the coolers because of the trapped air space was more than the fire retardant covers.

    http://www.energyefficientsolutions.com/recessed-light-cover.asp?gclid=CJTD6YGW0rMCFal_QgodLF0AWQ

    I tried to paste a link and the ones on this site are 17-20.00 each or 213.00 for 12 covers. Some are cardboard type material that is sprayed with a flame retardant and some are a type of foam that has fr properties. 16"x16"x10 3/4" is the bigger one they offer and both say to not use incandescent bulbs and I recommend not to with any 'sealing solution'.
  7. TLHinCanada

    TLHinCanada Feeling the Heat

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    That's the way your roof ventilation is supposed to work. Without that flow from the soffits to the peak condensation is created in the winter. This leads to mildew and rot. In the summer you will cut your shingle life in half. If your attic is properly insulated there will be no heat loss from that area. Without the proper air flow your asking for alot of trouble.
  8. Don2222

    Don2222 Minister of Fire

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    Salem NH
    This system does have the air flow from the soffits to the ridge vent for roof ventilation. The air flow is under the roof but above the rafter vents. therefore the air flow does not suck the heat out of the house! It should be code! Also closing the cable vents in the winter keeps cold air from swooping in and sucking out more heat!

    Another bonus Is that with the insulation and foil in the gable ends, the paint on the outside does not peel off anymore! Hurray!

    See pics. It really works! Click to enlarge

    Attached Files:

  9. Wachusett

    Wachusett Feeling the Heat

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    Wachusett Reservoir, MA.
    Don2222, Looking at your attic pics. FWIW you are not supposed to have both gable vents and ridge vents along with soffit vents.
    Having ridge and gable vents creates more venting up high in the attic vs. low venting (soffits) can cause a chimney effect and pull
    air from the living space through cracks, etc. causing the house to lose heat. The codes require more low venting area vs. high vents. Keep in mind you do want to allow the attice space itself to breath as warm humid does escape to the attic you want this moist air to have a way out. Do a little research buildingscience.com or greenbuildingadvisor.com
  10. Don2222

    Don2222 Minister of Fire

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    I have done all the research. In the summer it is great to have all the vents. Also the foil keeps out radiant heat and the house is 10 Degrees F cooler! I only need air conditioning now when it is too humid! It never gets very hot in the house anymore!

    In the winter the closed gables and the separate path under the rafter vents does not pull heat out of the house! The house is 10 Degrees F warmer! You can feel the difference! Also there is a small space to let humid air out the ridge vent. See pic where rafter vents covered with foil meet at the ridge!

    This is the best system I have ever found to save heat and air conditioning costs in my house. But like anything new you have to feel the difference and live with it for a while to believe how nice it! Thanks for your questions.
  11. TLHinCanada

    TLHinCanada Feeling the Heat

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    That's a fine job Don2222. It looks like it would work, that sort of job is done if the attic is going to be used. As I see no floor sheathing I would guess its not. I would say that you have R-20/28 in your ceiling joists. Increasing that to R-60 would give you a much higher heat retention. Depending on how the rest of the house performs (pre R-2000 homes were designed for a 25 % air exchange per hour) this could lead to a 10% to 25% heat loss drop through the roof. Have fun.
  12. Don2222

    Don2222 Minister of Fire

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    Thanks TLHinCanada
    Yes, it is a small space, I cannot stand up there so we use it for storage. It was built in 1962 with 2x4s in the floor of this attic space with Fiberglass R7 Economy insulations! So I rolled it up and took it to the dump. Then I purchased some 2x4s and ripped them down to 2x2s and nailed them to the 2x4s creating 2x6s! Then I rolled down the reflectix foil over the sheetrock ceiling below. The reflectix is covered with polypropylene to make a good moisture barrier and provide R4 insulation. Then I rolled down R19 Fiberglass between the new 2x6s and crisscrossed with R30 to make R53!

    Now I am building Truss shelves. How does it look?
    http://www.hearth.com/talk/threads/attic-trust-shelves-using-up-left-over-plywood.94157/

    Attached Files:

  13. TLHinCanada

    TLHinCanada Feeling the Heat

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    Looks fine. Now the rest of the forum knows how to insulate an attic two different ways and why. Step by step. I think an added bonus with your method is if an alf ever crashes into your garage/workshop you'll have a place to put him. Have fun.
  14. peakbagger

    peakbagger Minister of Fire

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    I quick comment about having gable end and ridge vents. In areas with snow, ridge vents frequently get covered with snow at just about the worst time they can as it means that the snow on the roof is going to melt and could cause damming as there is marginal air flow up from the soffits due to plugged ridge vents. If there are gable end vents they arent covered with snow and the air flow up through the soffits isnt impacted.

    I have both and the only impact I have found is that on hot days I dont run my gable end fan while I used to use the fan before I cut in ridge vents.
  15. CTguy9230

    CTguy9230 Feeling the Heat

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    Ok I'm just about to add insulation in my attic...just had a new
    roof put on and have both ridge and one gable vent....

    do I need to or should I install soffit vents ??
  16. jlupi

    jlupi Member

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    hudson valley, ny
    prevaling wisdom is seal the gable and add the correct ratio of soffits

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