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Old 09-16-2010, 01:29 PM   #46
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So just remove it and do want I have to then put it back?

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Old 09-16-2010, 01:47 PM   #47
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So just remove it and do want I have to then put it back?
Dinggus, the only reason you are going to move it at all is to look and see if you have any potential leaks. It looks to me like it is loose insulation, so get yourself a mask and gloves on and just move it out of the way as you go up and down each cavity between the trusses up there.

You can tell after awhile where the leaks are likely to be. Around any intrusion into the ceiling and maybe around the perimeter. You should be able to see the drywall joints as well, good idea to make sure there are no leaks there too.

Once you get started it won't take you long.
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Old 09-16-2010, 02:23 PM   #48
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Okay. What kind of foam would I use to seal things? I seen some in a can at home depot just don't remember the name.
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Old 09-16-2010, 02:54 PM   #49
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I think the most common one where you are is Great Stuff. You could always ask when you're at the store if there is anything more suitable.
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Old 09-16-2010, 03:01 PM   #50
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First bill? It might be for more than 30 days, might have a hookup fee, might have a security deposit.... are you sure that's just one month's worth of juice?

First project... try to do as little as possible for one year to get the feel for the place before doing "discretionary" improvements. Meanwhile just fix what really must be fixed. That way if you find a problem in winter that did not show in summer or vice versa you haven't tied your money up in, say, kitchen updates you could survive without for a little while. You also have lots of time to mull over ideas.

To reduce the AC bill try to reduce the sun on the windows by providing shade OUTSIDE the glass. Consider awnings for a real improvmeent later.
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Old 09-16-2010, 03:13 PM   #51
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Yep. Keep what you have. When you're all done sealing everything up, you can spread it back out.

The foam I used is called "Great Stuff". It's in a red can.

Cocobolo mentioned sealing around a hot pipe, like a B vent from your furnace or a gas water heater. Great Stuff also makes foam for 'high heat'. I'm not sure of the purpose of that stuff. I set some of it on fire out in the back yard one time (I wondered if it really was fire resistant). It burned just as easily as the regular Great Stuff. I have pictures of it here on the forum somewhere. Maybe in the How-To forum in the 'How to Fireblock' thread.

A moderator here, AtlanticWBConstruction, told me to look at Home Depot in the department that sells wood stoves for caulk that is meant for high temperatures, like you'd get with a woodstove pipe.

Don't expect to find it in the paint department with the other caulks and adhesives. At the time, there were two other kinds of caulk in that department that were supposed to be for high heat, but after reading the information, they weren't very good.

You asked how much it cost. I'm not sure if you meant for sealing the attic or for insulating.

I know I used at least 15 cans of Great Stuff. You have to watch out for what you're getting. Home Depot and Lowe's, in my area, sell two different size cans. If I remember right, Home Depot had the better price, but you'll want to compare prices yourself in your area.

Other than that, it seemed like I was always running to Lowe's for something else I needed up there.

My attic needed more than sealing and insulating. I kept finding weird problems up there. So it may not be so expensive for you.

I believe I paid the insulation guy $925 to add 2 or 3 extra square vents onto the roof and add however many inches of insulation - 14 or 16".

With you having such warm summers, you'll want to have a high R-value. Go higher than what is recommended for your area.

Your cost may be different, depending on the size of your attic and how much you want to add.

Hurriken mentioned insulating the lid of the hatch. That is one of the most important things to do. Mine is made of plywood. I stacked 2 pieces of 2" extruded foam board (blue stuff) on top of it, a few layers of Reflectix and one layer of some R-13 fiberglass insulation I had around the house. Im not sure if it's enough, but it's much better than it was. The insulation guy said he would have added the two layers of foam only.

Another really important thing about the hatch, is the gasket that the lid rests on when the attic is closed. Mine had a gasket on it, but it wasn't in perfect shape and there was a gap in it at one of the corners.

A new gasket is very cheap and well worth the couple minutes it takes to put it in. You'll find them in the same aisle as the rest of the weather proofing products.

On another note: Thank you for serving our country!

Barb
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Old 09-16-2010, 03:24 PM   #52
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First bill? It might be for more than 30 days, might have a hookup fee, might have a security deposit.... are you sure that's just one month's worth of juice?
You can contact your power company and ask them how much the bills for that house were up to (maybe more) 1 year past.

With the little bit of insulation you have up there now, you're definitely going to save money by sealing and insulating. It's better to start saving right off the bat than to waste money on your electric bill until you get around to it.

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Old 09-16-2010, 03:49 PM   #53
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My house is around 1400sqft. I'll grab a few cans of Great Foam and if I run out, just mark the area so I can come back to it when I get more.

Also, I'll go pick up a few cans of Great Stuff. A 16oz at Home Depot its $3.98 and a 12oz at Lowes its $3.88.

http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1...atalogId=10053
^^^ This stuff for cracks?

http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1...atalogId=10053
^^^ This stuff for pipes (PVC, eletrical, etc)?

Last edited by Dinggus; 09-16-2010 at 08:34 PM.
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Old 09-17-2010, 05:28 PM   #54
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I think you're on the right track there. The second Great Stuff product - the fireblock - looks like it is to prevent (or slow down) the spread of fire.

You should find out if it would work around a hot exhaust pipe.

Do you have a gas furnace? Or gas water heater? Or is it all electric heat and hot water?

If it's all electric, then you probably wouldn't have a B vent, which is the kind that gets warm. However, the B vent is double walled and does not get that hot. Still and all, I would make sure any foam you use around something like that will tolerate high heat.
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Old 09-17-2010, 10:22 PM   #55
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The water heater is electric heat and hot water (I believe). Friend and I will be going into the attic tomorrow.
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Old 09-17-2010, 10:29 PM   #56
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The water heater is electric heat and hot water (I believe). Friend and I will be going into the attic tomorrow.
Sounds like no B vent, so no hot pipes to worry about.

If you can take a couple of pieces of plywood up with you tomorrow, say about 26-28" x 12-18", you can lay those on the trusses to make it easier to work. Best if you have two each - one for your knees the other for your toes to land on.
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Old 09-17-2010, 10:32 PM   #57
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Okay, thanks! We'll also need gloves and masks, right?
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Old 09-17-2010, 10:40 PM   #58
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Okay, thanks! We'll also need gloves and masks, right?
You betcha!
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Old 09-18-2010, 01:18 AM   #59
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If you have an extra $20, get some knee pads. The crawling is tough on the knees and I find I can go faster with them.
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Old 09-18-2010, 01:37 AM   #60
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Okay, I'll just use the Army issued ones.

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