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Old 08-15-2008, 04:50 PM   #1
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Blow-In Insulation: Seeking Tips-Techniques For DIY


I'm seeking any tips, techniques or advice on how to perform blow-in insulation.

It took me quite a bit of searching to find a tool rental place that rented blowers in Brooklyn, NY. Now I find a source for the insulation.

I know I have to make a hole in the walls between each stud, but I don't know how big the holes should be.

I know I should lift up any electrical wiring so I don't bury it in the blow-in.

On the top floor I have half the ceiling removed so access to the attic space won't be any problem. How far will the blower shoot? If it's at least 15' or so I'll be able to reach to both sides of the house from the middle by leaving some openings when I install a new ceiling.

Say when I replace the ceiling I leave some open spaces between joists a couple of feet long. How will I then insulate those spots when I close up the holes? Should I just glue some batt to them maybe?

The old ceiling joists are 2"x4" and hold up a plaster ceiling. How much weight in insulation can they hold? The other half of the house will have new ceiling joists and a sheetrock ceiling. Probably 1/2" or 5/8". Is 2 x4 joists good for that?

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Old 08-15-2008, 06:17 PM   #2
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Blow-In Insulation: Seeking Tips-Techniques For DIY


It sounds like you have alot of good questions, but before you go all out i would buy and read this book from start to finish: "Insulate and weatherize" by bruce hartley. It will answer many of your questions and you wont regret it. For cellulose you can pick up lots at your local home depot or lowes. Its easy to do the attic space normally (make sure you airseal all penetrations before!), its the walls that can be tricky to get done right. You will need a long fill tube which you can read about to snake into the 2 inch holes you will drill into the stud spaces and dense pack them with cellulose. You cant just use the big hose they rent to you to blow the walls or the insulation will settle. Take your time, do the research, read the book, and you will be good to go. Good luck.
http://www.amazon.com/Insulate-Weath.../dp/1561585548

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Old 08-15-2008, 09:21 PM   #3
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Blow-In Insulation: Seeking Tips-Techniques For DIY


The rental machine that you use to blow cellulose insulation will work well for insulating an attic, but is not the tool of choice for insulating existing wall cavities through a hole. It uses a hose about 4" diameter. Doing that requires more specialized equipment, and to my knowledge it isn't something you can rent.

I'd also be cautious about lifting wire up and out of the insulation. That could cause more harm than good, depending on the wire. If it is basic NM romex wire or armored cable, there's nothing wrong with having insulation over it.
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Old 08-16-2008, 02:05 AM   #4
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Blow-In Insulation: Seeking Tips-Techniques For DIY


Hi Jaw,
That book looks like a winner. I put it in my cart. Thanks.
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Old 08-16-2008, 02:10 AM   #5
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Blow-In Insulation: Seeking Tips-Techniques For DIY


> thekctermite: The rental machine that you use to blow cellulose insulation is not the tool of choice for insulating existing wall cavities through a hole. It uses a hose about 4" diameter. Doing that requires more specialized equipment, and to my knowledge it isn't something you can rent.

What is used for walls?

> armored cable, there's nothing wrong with having insulation over it.

It's BX. I thought I read somewhere on some website not to cover it. I didn't know why.
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Old 08-16-2008, 02:49 AM   #6
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Blow-In Insulation: Seeking Tips-Techniques For DIY


Yes you can use the same machine to insulate the walls--you just have to attach a 1 to 2 inch vinyl "fill tube" to the big hose and use that to dense pack the walls thru the 2 to 3 inch holes you will drill. I did my entire house with great results. Here is a link to where i got my 10 foot fill tube:
http://www.jrproductsinc.com/shop/pc...idproduct=1098
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Old 08-16-2008, 12:47 PM   #7
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Blow-In Insulation: Seeking Tips-Techniques For DIY


Thanks for the link, Jaw. Good site.

I guess there is some kind of reducer/adapter for the fill tube to main hose. I didn't see that but I'll keep looking around.

=Tom
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Old 08-16-2008, 08:02 PM   #8
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Blow-In Insulation: Seeking Tips-Techniques For DIY


Yeah at my local HD they give out the cone like adaptor which is from greenfiber makers of the cellulose they sell. I just then used an o ring clamp to attach the fill tube to the cone and then another from the cone to the main hose. All that stuff is outlined in the book very well but for some really really good step by step info i will direct you to some pdfs i found a while back. These are training manuals for people doing work here in ohio and i found it invaluable for where to find stuff and to how exactly to dense pack my walls.
http://www.karg.com/PDF%20files/Insu...ald%202003.pdf
http://www.karg.com/PDF%20files/Insu...d%20Biddle.pdf
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Old 08-17-2008, 10:06 AM   #9
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Blow-In Insulation: Seeking Tips-Techniques For DIY


Hi Jaw,

Thanks for those two links. Very informative and I just started reading them. I'll make sure I'm completely familiar with them and gather the all the hose and accessories I need and have the job all planned out before I rent the machine.

Regards,
Tom

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