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Old 10-22-2011, 11:29 PM   #1
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Attic insulation and ventilation

I'm fixing up an old garage to make it into a building for all of my aquariums. It will be very warm and humid in the building. I live in eastern Washington state. Not seattle (think Idaho or Montana climate). My question is what should I do to the attic? Im assuming I need a vapor barrier on the ceiling. What kind of insulation is best? How much and what kind of attic ventilation will I need. I plan to run a dehumidifier in the building but this space will be kept constantly at 72-75 degrees. Right now there is no ceiling, no insulation, no soffets or vents of any kind so I am starting from scratch and want to do it right. Thanks


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Old 10-23-2011, 01:18 AM   #2
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First off, air seal like a madman; every conceivable crack or opening needs to be caulked, foamed, taped, whatever. Google the airtight drywall approach, too (ADA). Blow cellulose into the attic, as deep as you can afford or the sheet rock can support (depends on your spans). As for the vapor barrier, my gut says to avoid it, but that may be one for people who deal w/ high humidity inside, like pools, etc. Ventilation will surely help. I believe the rule for ventilation is 1 sf for every 100 to 150 sf of attic. Have plenty of ventilation, and keep the soffit vents close to the walls to minimize wind washing. Make sure you have at least 2" of air over the insulation near the eaves. If you pack the insulation in tight to the ceiling, you will be inviting icing, etc. If you just can not afford all the cellulose, use fiberglass batts (yuk!) and cover them w/ 3 or 4" of cellulose to prevent them from "leaking".


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Old 10-23-2011, 12:03 PM   #3
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I think you need to be more concerned with venting the room itself.
You are going to need a constant source of fresh air entering and taking out the humid air, venting this into the attic would not be a good idea either.

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