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insulation (by OHLL [OH]) Apr 10, 2024 9:19 PM
       (by Richard [MI]) Apr 10, 2024 10:08 PM
       (by BillW [NJ]) Apr 10, 2024 11:10 PM
       (by Vee [OH]) Apr 11, 2024 7:59 AM
       (by OHLL [OH]) Apr 11, 2024 8:26 AM
       (by Scott [IN]) Apr 11, 2024 10:46 AM
       (by Busy [WI]) Apr 11, 2024 11:21 AM
       (by OHLL [OH]) Apr 11, 2024 11:48 AM
       (by Robert,OntarioCanada [ON]) Apr 12, 2024 4:10 AM
       (by Vee [OH]) Apr 14, 2024 7:17 AM

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insulation (by OHLL [OH]) Apr 10, 2024 9:19 PM

I am working on renovating a third floor unit that was converted from an attic. The unit has knee walls, so there is a triangular area in the attic on both sides of the apartment outside of the livable space. In this space, the prior landlord stapled cardboard to the rafters and blew in insulation between the cardboard and the underside of the roof deck. Some of the cardboard and insulation has fallen down. I am concerned if I leave the insulation that has not fallen down as is, I would be shortening the life of the roof, which is about five years old. I am thinking about ripping down the rest of the cardboard and letting the existing insulation fall onto the space between the second floor ceiling/the third floor. I have access to this space through panels that are in the knee walls. I could then add insulation to the knee walls. The roof has a ridge vent but no soffit vents. The house is over 100 years old so the soffits are probably not air tight. The house is in the Cleveland, OH area. Does this plan make sense or should I just leave the existing insulation as is other than dealing with the areas where the cardboard has fallen down?


insulation (by Richard [MI]) Apr 10, 2024 10:08 PM

Oh boy. Here goes.

The cardboard was likely put up some time ago by the former owner.

I'd advise to rip it down and get rid of the cardboard. Being on the second floor as you describe it's likely doing little. Do what you said, insulate the knee walls and the floor behind them. I'd add soffit vents on the outside about every 4 to 6 feet.

I'd also call an insulation company and get a price from them to do it as they will have equipment,ladders, etc to do it all quickly. Plus they have the knowledge of what works best in your area. --75.7.xx.xx

insulation (by BillW [NJ]) Apr 10, 2024 11:10 PM

I'd suggest googling "knee wall insulation detail jlc" and click on "Insulating a Knee Wall" and you can see there's (at least) two ways to handle this. One is with the side attics conditioned space and one is with the side attics outdoor space.

I'm assuming your concerned with ventilation under the roof, and if you have a ridge vent then you need to see if you have soffit vent. Get up in the dark and look for daylight (soffit vents). Bring a mirror and or camera on a stick and see what's going on out in the soffits. If you have both, then you need an air path and that's what baffles are for, to keep the insulation from blocking the ventilation air path.

In addition to insulation, you need to be concerned with air sealing and this is covered in what I suggested above. It's like you can have a thick winter jacket, but if everything is not zippered and buttoned up, all the insulation won't help.

insulation (by Vee [OH]) Apr 11, 2024 7:59 AM

I follow Richard's idea of tearout the mess, not much benefit with this, add roof ventilation baffles - they are formed shapes that allow air passage under the roof deck to ventilate the underside of the roof deck so the plywood does not delaminate during the heat/cool cycles that go above and below the dew point weekly or daily. you may be able to rake the loose stuff together and repurpose it in another location - small snow shovels help get this into cheap trash can liners - these can be stapled into stud cavities elsewhere, the bags make good vapor barriers as well as staple ears, or if you have access to a loose fill blower machine pour these bags in mixing 50 percent with cellulose to handle the insect kill, former general manager of insulation company in the Cleveland Ohio area, I am also the person trying to Organize the Greater Cleveland landlord group, worked for the REIANO group about 15 years before the untimely passing of Shannon and Mary lLou Best who with Vina Cox Jones created the Ohio RIA that broke into groups you see wiggling around the area today.

insulation (by OHLL [OH]) Apr 11, 2024 8:26 AM

Thanks for the comments. I do not see any soffit vents. I am thinking of hiring that out as I do not like going that high up on a ladder. --172.59.xx.xx

insulation (by Scott [IN]) Apr 11, 2024 10:46 AM

Are the rafter bays above that 3rd floor living space also stuffed with insulation? How are you planning to deal with that?

insulation (by Busy [WI]) Apr 11, 2024 11:21 AM

Last roof I had done, contractor insisted on putting an intake vent the length of the roof, both side, about four or five feet up. There had been a ridge vent, with teeny, tiny soffit vents in the very narrow soffit, but those miniscule soffit vents seemed to be mostly blocked, AND, leaving those bays open, free from insulation, does seem to me to be a potential source of neat transfer from the rooms below to the roof. Its been about three-four years, and so far, so good. I did put the stryofoam baffles in each rafter bay, then filled underneath with insulation, but no soffit vents. The idea being the cold air intake is higher up from the rooms below, yet the baffle provides a slight air gap between roof and insulation. That was how the roofer suggested I improve existing insulation.

So, perhaps the place for intake venting of attic cut be higher on the roof than the soffit? Though, OHLL, a new roof might be needed to get that vent in there, so might not be best option right now.

insulation (by OHLL [OH]) Apr 11, 2024 11:48 AM

Scott - yes there is insulation above the 3rd floor living space. The knee walls come up about 4 feet, the walls then go underside the rafters for maybe 5 feet and then the third floor has a flat ceiling. I don't think the insulation above the flat ceiling goes all the way to the roof. I have to check but that should be easy enough since I put in recessed lights.

For the portion of the third floor walls that follows the rafters maybe I need to put in styrofoam baffles and make sure there is no insulation within the baffles. --172.59.xx.xx

insulation (by Robert,OntarioCanada [ON]) Apr 12, 2024 4:10 AM

The most important with insulation is to be completely air tight ;where in the house with fiber glass insulation there is mold in the insulation. Spray foam is air tight along with does not deteriorate like fiber glass insulation. Can buy a two can of DIY spray foam kits at most building supply stores where will need hazmat suite, face mask, safety glasses and gloves. If want more information then view some videos on You tube on how to DIY spray foam kits. Remove all the old insulation then can fill in the spaces. Attic or upper floors will always have the greatest heat loss then walls.

insulation (by Vee [OH]) Apr 14, 2024 7:17 AM

OH-LL poster you mentioned being near the Cleveland Ohio area, I wanted to mention the Greater Cleveland landlord group meets this Wednesday for dinner at Kumo Grill 1975 Snow Rd at 530 with a discussion to follow on treating interior and yard insects, hopefully getting news on the 2024 maintenance forms requirement handed down by building and housing court, last month we learned the lead clearance test and point of sale inspection has been suspended temporarily - took 4 years for us to get someone from the city to attend our meeting and share info with us. The fancy buffet cost 23bux plus drinks however they have a menu of entrees in the 10-12 range which many attendees enjoy while networking - there is a 5bux donation to the organizers of this event, handouts as usual., rear meeting room. If you talk with anothe member I have re-printed the last handout on the smoking rules tat includes the latest on MJ - new toner in my copier now.

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