How to Insulate Your Walls?
In the 1970s and prior to that, homes had uninsulated walls. There was a lack of awareness of the significance of wall insulation. Homes still worked fine but they missed out the perks that would follow with having the walls insulated. Studies show that uninsulated closed walls, especially in harsh climate prone regions, resulted in discomfort and high energy bills. Homes without wall insulation are more prone to over usage of heating or cooling system. It constantly blows hot and cold air. This is not healthy for the occupants neither for the environment. Along with that, a greater per cent of warm and cool air can easily seep through the hollow wall cavities. Adding insulation to the walls at the time of renovation or building a house can be beneficial in every aspect. It has an increased energy efficiency which saves your pocket, makes the house more comfortable and safer.
Steps to Insulate your Walls with Fiberglass Insulation
There are several steps and techniques to follow when you insulate your walls. From using spray to batts, you need to go according to the procedure. This makes it easier for the DIYers as well.
Measuring the wall area
Firstly, measure the wall area that needs to be insulated so that you know how much insulation it needs. Take the measurement of the total area of each wall. Measure the width between the studs and count the wall gaps that need insulation. Insulation batts are manufactured especially to fill the wall gaps. The width has to be perfect. Hence, counting the wall gaps will prevent you from getting the wrong size.
Working with Fiberglass insulation
There are different grades of batts for different areas of the house. It varies and depends on the wall that needs to be insulated. Interior, exterior, attic and basement walls need different insulation. Why is that? Well, R-value or thermal resistance of the batt differs. For interior walls, preferably R-13 batt is used for 2 x 4 studs whereas R-19 is used for 2 x 6 studs.
Get the right tools and safety equipment necessary for the installation
For fiberglass installation, you will need the basic tools and safety equipment. The latter is even more important to prevent you from mishaps. The most basic tools are important. So here is all you need-
- Protective Gear (important)- Gloves, Mask, Long sleeves and pants, Boots. (A top-to-bottom protection)
- Utility knife
- Staple Gun
Cutting and Pushing the batts into the studs
Once you get the fiberglass insulation, cut the batts into proper height and width. The better way is to buy insulation with an appropriate width. In terms of height, you will still have to cut and fit them into the spaces that need to be filled.
- Lay the insulation in a place suitable to cut.
- Carefully cut through the face of the insulation with your utility knife.
- Be consistent with the cutting part as it could be hard to cut through.
- Shove the pieces into space to be filled.
- Try handling it by edges to ensure the floating particles are down.
- Tug the batts outward for the gaps to be filled entirely.
Secure the batts to the studs
After you push the batts in, use your staple gun to attach the paper lining to the stud every 7 inches. Make sure yo stable every piece securely until you move on to the next row.
Vapour-retardant Barriers over batts for exterior walls
It’s a common practice to apply vapour-retardant film over the insulation. This makes it more secure and makes the external walls extremely insulated. It helps to maximize the thermal potential of the batts.
Steps to Insulate your Walls with Spray Foam Insulation
Ensure a suitable space for Spray foam
Sprayfoam insulation can be best for your crawl space, attic and basement walls. All you have to do is, use a low-pressure sprayer along with the safety equipment.
You get disposable and refillable spray insulation tanks along with a spray foam insulation kit. Although it could be a little expensive, it is easy for installation, especially to insulate a small area.
Additional Protective equipment
- Eye protection is required
- A respirator
- Full work suit
- Long sleeves and pants
Either Open or closed-cell insulation spray
Choose between either of the sprays. Closed-cell insulation is more rigid and denser with a higher R-value than open-cell. However, open-cell is faster and cheaper including most individual spray cans of foam.
Prepare the area
This involves removing debris, nails and other hindrance on the walls that need to be insulated. Identify the areas with air leakage or gaps and mark them with tape or marker to come back to them.
Spray from 2 ft away
You can attach your sprayer to the bucket of insulation. Start spraying but don’t get too close while doing it. Spray it evenly inside a wall from the count of one to three, pause and check the process. Ensure that you are keeping it even and not over-filling the wall. Keep repeating the process until done.
Drywall the insulated area
It is a common practice to drywall over the insulated area once done with the whole procedure. Spray foam has the potential to ignite a fire. It is not a finished surface and thus, the application of drywall is almost a necessity.
Tips to improve Wall Insulation
When insulating your walls, here are some tips to remember and help you improve wall insulation.
Stuffing should be avoided
Avoid stuffing full-width batts into spaces with narrow space. Stuffing can crumple batts which created uninsulated air pockets and decreases the R-value.
Seal narrower gaps with spray foam
Use spray foam to seal the window and door jambs. This will seal the empty space around the widow and prevent air infiltration.
Split the insulation around wires and pipes
Split the batts to fit them around wires and pipes. This will optimize the full value of the insulation.
Don’t tuck batts behind pipes and cables
Compressing the fiberglass insulation can result in a decrease of its R-value. It also creates a void between the drywall and insulation and hence it is best to avoid stuffing full-thickness batts around the mentioned areas.
Avoid paper-faced insulation
Paper-faced insulations make the cutting of the batts difficult. It is tough to create a vapour retardant with paper-faced insulation.
Choose Friction-fit batts
It is better to buy unfaced friction-fit insulation. Seal your walls with poly vapour retardant and seal the gap between the bottom plate of the wall and the floor with caulk.
What to remember when Insulating your walls?
- Insulations like mineral and sheep wool, cellulose and cementitious materials also work great as an alternative to fiberglass.
- Keep the insulation wrapped until you use it. This is to avoid the release of particles of fiberglass into the air which can cause allergies and itchiness.
- Do not touch fiberglass batts with bare hands and keep your breathing equipment ready before you handle it.
- When exposed to fiberglass, avoid scrubbing your hands or face with water. This can cause micro-abrasions. Dust off yourself first and then wash your clothes right away.
- Applying caulk between the top and bottom plates and the floor of every batt can work well for sound-dampening.
- The roofs and other renovation jobs will require excess spray foam to insulate. It is more convenient to hire a professional insulation installation team.
- Spray cans can be good for fixing small leaks and for small jobs like filling the gaps between the windows and doors.
- Cover the furniture and finished flooring with a plastic sheet to avoid exposure to insulation.
- The best temperature to apply spray insulation is between 60 and 80 degrees F.
Why choose Celluloseman for Wall insulation?
Hiring a professional service for insulating walls would be a safe and better option. Celluloseman professional insulators provide the best services for wall insulation with the latest safety gear, high-pressure applicators and spray rig. These trained insulators have experience in insulating all level insulating including the basement insulation and other uninsulated areas of your home. Celluloseman is the solution for your unanswered queries and other problems. We ensure you quality services with the most suitable and apt advice and assure you good thermal condition to your home. Reach out to a more cost-effective insulation removal and installation service and enjoy the maximum benefit of the professional service.