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Old 12-15-2012, 10:25 PM   #1
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Blown Insulation vs Blown Fiberglass


Hello Everyone. I own a four family apartment building in Missouri and I'm considering having insulation installed in the attic, first floor ceiling, and basement ceiling. The building was built in 1970.
The attic contains original R-9 (roughly) insulation. The first floor ceiling probably contains little to no insulation and I'm looking more for noise reduction. The basement double as garage parking for the tenants with existing unfinished drywall installed. There is no existing insulation underneath the drywall.
I've spoken to four different contractors and have received four similar but unique proposal bids. Three have proposed cellulose blown insulation. They would drill holes the size of door knobs throughout the existing ceilings and blow in the cellulose. One mentioned dense packing the cellulose.
Another contractor, whom one of my coworkers recommended and I consider trustworthy, suggested using blown fiberglass. Same technique as above. They would drill holes in the ceilings and blow in fiberglass. He said he prefers the fiberglass because it doesn't settle like cellulose. However, he said he would do whatever I like.
Does anyone have any advice? I feel like my head is spinning with these choices.

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Old 12-16-2012, 09:22 AM   #2
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Blown Insulation vs Blown Fiberglass


Cellulose, when installed properly, doesn't settle either.

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Old 12-17-2012, 12:34 AM   #3
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Blown Insulation vs Blown Fiberglass


either will work, but, as wow said, dense packed cellulose (over about 2.5 pcf) will not settle. hire whoever can guarantee that whatever they put in will be dense packed to specs. cellulose will not have fiberglass shards all over the house for 3 eons. (disclaimer: the shards comment is only my gut feeling and is not based on any science that i am aware of, but i can not see how you can blow fg into a hole, from which a lot of air has to escape, and not have fg shards air borne and settling everywhere.) i think the fg is better suited for new construction and windows open, etc, as well as the normal major cleaning before occupancy time. just my gut.
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Old 12-17-2012, 08:27 AM   #4
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Blown Insulation vs Blown Fiberglass


How important is it to seal the attic? Another company suggested I seal the attic for $1700 in addition to blowing insulation. As a landlord, I'm not sure if this is going to be cost effective for me.
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Old 12-17-2012, 08:45 AM   #5
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Blown Insulation vs Blown Fiberglass


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Originally Posted by DRILLINDK View Post
How important is it to seal the attic? Another company suggested I seal the attic for $1700 in addition to blowing insulation. As a landlord, I'm not sure if this is going to be cost effective for me.
that depends on how leaky it is now. but if there are leaks, and there usually is. sealing will make a LARGE difference. probably not so much in the comfort of the spaces. but in the comfort of the money in your wallet.

how about some picks of the attic. the price depends on a lot of things. but $1700 sounds kinda high.
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Old 12-17-2012, 09:01 AM   #6
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Blown Insulation vs Blown Fiberglass


Thank for the replies! The tenants pay for all utilities individually. I'm not concerned about saving myself money on heating and cooling bills. I'm just trying to improve the quality of the apartment. Eliminate air drafts, being cold in winter, hot in summer. The furnance pretty much run constantly when heating or cooling. Windows are next on the list to be replaced as well.

As far as between the first and second floor. I'm more concerned with eliminating the sounds. It sounds as if elephants are walking on the ceiling of the first floor from the second floor tenants walking around. I'm considering just putting up a new ceiling on top of the exisitng one with batts insulation and the noise reducing metal joises. I currnetly have 9 ft ceilings, so height isn't an issue. I would only have to drop a handful of lights down to the new ceiling level.
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Old 12-17-2012, 09:07 AM   #7
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Blown Insulation vs Blown Fiberglass


go up in the attic yourself and look for any holes. bring a can of spray foam with ya, just in case.


fixing up the existing ceiling will not do a heck of a lot. but if you build a second ceiling under the current one. that will do a great deal of sound dampening.
just be sure that the second ceiling is as completely isolated from the current ceiling as possible. but remember no matter what you do, it will still be possible or some sounds to leak through.
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Old 12-18-2012, 10:46 PM   #8
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Blown Insulation vs Blown Fiberglass


http://www.finehomebuilding.com/PDF/Free/021105092.pdf

http://www.ornl.gov/sci/buildings/20...s/80_Bibee.pdf

Gary

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