Master Bedroom Built On Deck - Insulation - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum


Go Back   DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum > Home Improvement > Insulation

CLICK HERE AND JOIN OUR COMMUNITY TODAY...IT'S FREE!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 11-28-2011, 02:30 PM   #1
Newbie
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 28
Rewards Points: 25
Default

Master Bedroom built on Deck


Hi all,

New homeowner from Edmonton, Canada. Posting this here even though it is a bit multidisciplinary. Don't really know where to go with it.

It gets cold up here, regularly below -25C/-13F in the winter months. We have a large master bedroom that is an addition to the house, and it has three registers (not sure whether one is a return, would hope so) but is consistently 5 degrees colder than the rest of the house (at least). It hasn't even gotten very cold yet but it still is concerning me already.

I looked up the history and it turns out the master was originally part of a larger deck, then was covered into a 'sun room' and built. There is a crawl space underneath that we can see from our downstairs bathroom window (used to view backyard before addition). The crawl space has some fiberglass insulation against the exterior wall, but at the top it's just wood plank which I think is just the floor of the bedroom (no attached insulation). Note that all of the ventilation runs through the crawl space (which is basically outside temperature), they are covered with a aluminum foil looking material.

The builder's notes say that the walls were insulated at R20.There is no mention of the ceiling. We can't really go into the attic because there is some vermiculite blown over with cellulose. However, the inspector looked up there, he couldn't walk around but he could see fiberglass on the far end where the addition was.

There are three large windows in the room. One is a slider that opens to the deck and . They all are double paned with wood frames that have significant rot on them due to drapes covering them for years and causing moisture.

This is a bit of a novel, but hopefully it explains the situation. Does anyone have any advice or idea what might be the main source of issues, or have any tips for what we could do to improve the heat retention in the room?

What do you think we could do to improve the temperature in this room, or is it doomed to be much colder because it has three exterior walls and several windows?

Advertisement

BeMurda is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2011, 03:36 PM   #2
Exterior Construction
 
Windows on Wash's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Washington DC Metro Area (VA, MD, DC)
Posts: 7,089
Rewards Points: 3,244
Default

Master Bedroom built on Deck


They are treating the crawl as conditioned in this application by insulating the exterior wall.

In doing such, you don't need insulation on the underfloor if the insulation on the walls is correct.

Here is what I would do:
  • Remove existing fiberglass insulation on the wall. It is not anywhere near an R-20
  • Put down complete vapor barrier on the floor of the crawl (if dirt) and run it up the side walls and seal with foam or suitable mastic
  • Spray foam band joists with closed cell foam and put about 4-5 inches on them
  • Install rigid foam (poly iso) to the side walls to a thickness of about 4-5 inches. Use suitable adhesive and attach through furring strips
  • Open up some supply side air to warm the area up
Vermiculite is fine if you don't disturb it too much. If it is blown over with cellulose, it should be fine.

If you don't have 14-16" of insulation, you don't have enough.

Use cellulose instead of fiberglass.

Advertisement

Windows on Wash is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2011, 03:51 PM   #3
Newbie
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 28
Rewards Points: 25
Default

Master Bedroom built on Deck


Quote:
Originally Posted by Windows on Wash View Post
They are treating the crawl as conditioned in this application by insulating the exterior wall.

In doing such, you don't need insulation on the underfloor if the insulation on the walls is correct.

Here is what I would do:
  • Remove existing fiberglass insulation on the wall. It is not anywhere near an R-20
  • Put down complete vapor barrier on the floor of the crawl (if dirt) and run it up the side walls and seal with foam or suitable mastic
  • Spray foam band joists with closed cell foam and put about 4-5 inches on them
  • Install rigid foam (poly iso) to the side walls to a thickness of about 4-5 inches. Use suitable adhesive and attach through furring strips
  • Open up some supply side air to warm the area up
Vermiculite is fine if you don't disturb it too much. If it is blown over with cellulose, it should be fine.

If you don't have 14-16" of insulation, you don't have enough.

Use cellulose instead of fiberglass.
Thanks for the advice. What makes you certain that the insulation isn't R20? It certainly feels like a lot of heat loss could be coming from the windows.

I am hesitant about going in the attic but it might be necessary. The inspector's report says there is only about 4-6" of insulation in the house's attic generally.

Also, for clarification, were you talking about the crawl space throughout the list or was some of it in reference to the room?

Last edited by BeMurda; 11-28-2011 at 06:25 PM.
BeMurda is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2011, 09:37 PM   #4
Exterior Construction
 
Windows on Wash's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Washington DC Metro Area (VA, MD, DC)
Posts: 7,089
Rewards Points: 3,244
Default

Master Bedroom built on Deck


Quote:
Originally Posted by BeMurda View Post
Thanks for the advice. What makes you certain that the insulation isn't R20? It certainly feels like a lot of heat loss could be coming from the windows.

I am hesitant about going in the attic but it might be necessary. The inspector's report says there is only about 4-6" of insulation in the house's attic generally.

Also, for clarification, were you talking about the crawl space throughout the list or was some of it in reference to the room?
My point about that not nearly R-20 was referencing the fact that fiberglass does not perform anywhere near its intended R-Value at temperature extremes and not whether or not it was 6" thick.

The reality is that if it is an R-20, it is working closer to an R-10 at those temperatures.

4-6" is less than half of what you need up there. Think of the improvements in terms of total square footage. What is the square footage of your attic vs. how many square feet of window (a sealed double pane window at that) you have. Attic and crawl space repairs are going to much, much cheaper per improvement dollar as well.

The punch listing of what I would do was for the crawlspace.
Windows on Wash is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2011, 02:49 AM   #5
Newbie
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 28
Rewards Points: 25
Default

Master Bedroom built on Deck


Quote:
Originally Posted by Windows on Wash View Post
My point about that not nearly R-20 was referencing the fact that fiberglass does not perform anywhere near its intended R-Value at temperature extremes and not whether or not it was 6" thick.

The reality is that if it is an R-20, it is working closer to an R-10 at those temperatures.

4-6" is less than half of what you need up there. Think of the improvements in terms of total square footage. What is the square footage of your attic vs. how many square feet of window (a sealed double pane window at that) you have. Attic and crawl space repairs are going to much, much cheaper per improvement dollar as well.

The punch listing of what I would do was for the crawlspace.
An update:

I have the energy efficiency guy coming to look at the whole house on the 10th. However I did figure out what is completely strange and illogical about the crawl space being insulated and 'conditioned'. It's vented to the outdoors. According to the federal government, conditioned spaces should not be vented. It makes perfect sense, and the way it is now makes no sense; why bother insulating if you're going to open up a big hole to the outdoors? I think the solution is removing the external venting and adding heat supply, the latter as per your suggestion (other details as well).
BeMurda is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2011, 08:10 AM   #6
Member
 
ccarlisle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Posts: 1,889
Rewards Points: 1,000
Default

Master Bedroom built on Deck


In some places, 'venting' crawl space is season-dependent i.e. that the venting is closed off in winter and opened in summer, much like our cold-rooms up here are. So, sure it makes no sense that the crawl space is vented to the outside, when there is insulation on the inside and no heat source. So right now, your building "envelope" (that is, the part that you heat) runs along your master bedroom floor. Everything beyond that is "outside". And unless your mb floor is well insulated from underneath, it sure will be cold in that room.

So you have two options: insulate the underside of the mb floor really well - say like spray-foam it - and insulate the heating ducts too and consider the crawl space 'outside' OR insulate the walls of the crawl space, seal up the vent and consider the crawl space as part of your inside, conditioned living space.

It seems like the process of sealing up what was once a three-season deck and converted into a conditioned living space wasn't taken the whole way.
__________________
“The average American woman is about 25 pounds heavier than she was in 1960...Recognizing obesity as a disease will help change the way the medical community tackles this complex issue that affects approximately 1 in 3 Americans,”
ccarlisle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2011, 08:52 AM   #7
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Hartfield VA
Posts: 27,728
Rewards Points: 572
Default

Master Bedroom built on Deck


I also would never just rely on foam on the crawl space walls. Add what ever thickness insulation will fit in your bays under that room with the paper toward the conditioned surface (bedroom floor)
Let me make a guess on those sliders. There's a deck area right at the threshold not a small step down at least 4", or there's little over hang on the additions roof. What happens in water can splash back up, and will at some point get in under the threshold. I'd bet if you remove the flooring that's there and expose the sub floor there will at least be a stain if not rot by now.
It's almost never a good idea to do what they did by inslosing that room and inclosing that space. Reason being a deck is almost never built strong enough to support the walls and new roof unless it was designed for those loads in the first place.
I've seen people build the room right on the deck and never even took off the decking boards and the building was built slightly small then the deck it was covering so there was a ledge of old decking sticking out all around two sides. Since the walls and door were even with 1/2 the old deck the sheathing was rotted out 2' up the wall and the floor was also shot.
http://www.pima.org/contentpage/Cont...SubModuleID=90
What's the thickness of the wall studs? If there 6" then R20 is all they could fit in there. To change that you would have to remove all the sheetrock and hire someone to spray foam it or have to build the walls out, add extention jams to the windows and door jams so thicker insulation would fit uncompressed. (Not likly to happen)
Sliders all leak air, poor windows or even a poor insulation of any window will result in air leaking.
No insulation or foam around the door opens in the area between the rough framing and jams will leak air.
I've been under at least a 1000 homes in my life time and without question the one's that tryed to close up the crawl space instead of venting it were in the worst condition. Fungus on the floor joist and under side of the subfloor is very common. All from rizing moisture in the soil below.
It may work where it's dry and but not where it snow, rains a lot, or gets cold in the winter.
I'm mostly a remodler of 100 plus year old houses not a builder, so I get to see what happens long after the builder has left and I'm stuck trying to fix it.

Last edited by joecaption; 12-03-2011 at 09:13 AM.
joecaption is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2011, 09:46 AM   #8
Member
 
ccarlisle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Posts: 1,889
Rewards Points: 1,000
Default

Master Bedroom built on Deck


I doubt the OP could even find paper-faced insulation; we don't use it up here.
__________________
“The average American woman is about 25 pounds heavier than she was in 1960...Recognizing obesity as a disease will help change the way the medical community tackles this complex issue that affects approximately 1 in 3 Americans,”
ccarlisle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2011, 09:51 AM   #9
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Hartfield VA
Posts: 27,728
Rewards Points: 572
Default

Master Bedroom built on Deck


And why is that?
joecaption is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2011, 12:34 PM   #10
Member
 
ccarlisle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Posts: 1,889
Rewards Points: 1,000
Default

Master Bedroom built on Deck


Because of the greater differential in temperatures between the outdoors and the inside of the house, there is a greater 'push' from the vapour on the inside to get through the inside walls to the outside; thus, you need either a good vapour barrier with a perm rating of something around 1, or have almost none at all. Used to be a time when codes suggested - and they still do - to put 6mil plastic vapour barrier on top of the fibreglass batts. That's your set-up right there; and for years this was followed to the letter. No vapour sandwiches, please...on top of that you had to air seal as well, making the whole insulation proposal a chore in itself. Especially a retrofit.

So no facing on the batts; not the old tar-paper facing that some batts used to have and neither the newer plastics. But what with the new thinking on insulation in general in cold climates, and spray-foam insulation popularity, this method (fibreglass+6mil sheet vapour barrier+air sealing) has fallen into some disuse nowadays and newer construction goes right for the foam.

So, I honestly don't remember the last time I saw paper-faced fibreglass batts on sale anywhere in Canada, it's all the unfaced.

Advertisement

__________________
“The average American woman is about 25 pounds heavier than she was in 1960...Recognizing obesity as a disease will help change the way the medical community tackles this complex issue that affects approximately 1 in 3 Americans,”

Last edited by ccarlisle; 12-03-2011 at 12:55 PM.
ccarlisle is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
TREX decking extremely disappointing KHL General DIY Discussions 266 07-05-2013 12:26 PM
Adding Return Air Duct in Master Bedroom ajlewis1 HVAC 10 08-14-2011 05:33 PM
Moving a master bathroom into a spare bedroom Vancouverbc Plumbing 0 03-21-2011 01:50 PM
Building a new deck....and creative uses of granite scrap in outdoor living space Rhizzlebop Building & Construction 9 05-15-2009 12:17 PM
Having a Deck Built In Nashville (Davidson)Tennessee. What should I look for? cslinger Building & Construction 1 08-21-2006 11:44 PM




Top of Page | View New Posts