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Old 06-06-2012, 03:45 PM   #1
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Uh oh, did I just make a huge mistake?


As I'm writing this I have some guys in my place just finishing up blowing in some cellulose insulation in my attic. We have been dealing with some thermal issues and one of the things discovered is that my attic was very light on insulation. To counter this an insulation company has been doing a bunch of stuff and the final part of the attic was blowing in the cellulose.

My house has a cedar shingle roof and over the past few years as the weather gets warmer we have noticed silverfish on the ceilings of the upper level and sporadically throughout the bathrooms on the upper level. My exterminator treats for them when he comes out in the spring but told me that due to the cedar shingle roof it won't be uncommon to see them as they love the moisture and that is why they are seen on the upper level.

After doing some (more) reading on cellulose as it was being blown on I saw some comments about how Silverfish love cellulose to feed on. I guess I'm asking if I just gave a home with Silverfish already present a huge food supply? Is this going to lead to an infestation?

I'm getting very concerned here as I don't really know what my options are now that the insulation has already been blown in. I'm so frustrated that I didn't realize this a week ago or even yesterday. Am I over-reacting here? I intend to call my exterminator for his thoughts but I figured I could post the question here to see people's thoughts. Thanks.

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Old 06-06-2012, 07:45 PM   #2
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You are going to have to get an exterminator in there to take care of the Silverfish, before they get any worst. Usually they gather where there is moisture, so most likely they have come up from below, and crawled along the main vent stack, and come out through cracks in the bath.

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Old 06-06-2012, 08:20 PM   #3
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Uh oh, did I just make a huge mistake?


Do you intend on keeping the cedar roof? Are the silverfish localized to one room or one side of the house?Do you have trees or taller buildings besides your home that creates excessive shade to one area or side of the roof?
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Old 06-06-2012, 08:22 PM   #4
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You are going to have to get an exterminator in there to take care of the Silverfish, before they get any worst. Usually they gather where there is moisture, so most likely they have come up from below, and crawled along the main vent stack, and come out through cracks in the bath.
My exterminator was up in the attic about 4-6 weeks ago treating for silverfish. Since he treated the number we see has decreased significantly but we still do see the occasional one in the bathroom. He said at my next quarterly service appointment he was going to do some caulking in the bathroom that should help reduce them getting through.

I asked him if what he is doing will help long term and he said there really isn't anything he could do to prevent them coming in as they get in through the cedar roof since they love it and there is a lot of moisture in it. He said that he'll pre-treat in the spring as they seem to come out as the air gets warmer (or I guess get killed off in the winter). But I should generally expect to see some each spring due to my roof.

My concern now is that I might have exacerbated the issue by adding the cellulose insulation. If my exterminator told me that I'll always have some level of silverfish each spring did I just set myself up for an even bigger problem?
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Old 06-06-2012, 08:24 PM   #5
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Do you intend on keeping the cedar roof? Are the silverfish localized to one room or one side of the house?Do you have trees or taller buildings besides your home that creates excessive shade to one area or side of the roof?
Yes I had been intending on keeping the roof. The home (and thus roof) is only about 4 years old as the home was newly constructed when we bought it. I'd hate to have to replace the roof completely.

I notice them more on the master bedroom/bathroom side of the house but I think that is because I spend more time there. We definitely see them to some extent on all sides of the upper level. I don't think that one side is excessively shaded vs. the other.
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Old 06-06-2012, 08:58 PM   #6
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Do you have an attic space? If so check to see if any type ducting is being exhausted into the attic space, bathroom exhaust,dryer etc.
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Old 06-06-2012, 09:10 PM   #7
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Do you have an attic space? If so check to see if any type ducting is being exhausted into the attic space, bathroom exhaust,dryer etc.
There is an attic space which is what was just filled with the blown in cellulose. I don't think the bathroom vents are being exhausted into the attics but I wouldn't really know how to check. One thing your post did make me think of though came from a recent report. There was a pipe going up to the attic which I'm pretty sure is from the humidifier of my upstairs furnace. I've included the picture from the report.

http://img856.imageshack.us/img856/3817/attic.jpg

Last edited by ks-man; 06-06-2012 at 09:17 PM.
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Old 06-06-2012, 09:18 PM   #8
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My line of thought has been , is there humidity being dumped into the attic from an inside source and also sometimes "wooden" roofs that are shaded most of the day or covered with organic mater (like leaves or pine needles) these areas never get a chance to dry out making these areas more prone to moss ,insects etc. So if these items are eliminated then I will need to do some more thinking
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Old 06-06-2012, 09:34 PM   #9
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Uh oh, did I just make a huge mistake?


Quote:
Originally Posted by IntexInspector View Post
My line of thought has been , is there humidity being dumped into the attic from an inside source and also sometimes "wooden" roofs that are shaded most of the day or covered with organic mater (like leaves or pine needles) these areas never get a chance to dry out making these areas more prone to moss ,insects etc. So if these items are eliminated then I will need to do some more thinking
From what I've been reading online it just seems that silverfish are simply drawn to cedar roofs. It seems to be well documented. I'm hoping that with regular treatment for silverfish the new insulation won't make the problem worse. We can live with the silverfish as they have been for the past few years and it would be a shame to have to rip off a pretty new expensive cedar roof. I just don't know if the cellulose is going to make the problem significantly worse than it has been up to now.
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Old 06-06-2012, 11:15 PM   #10
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One potential bright side is that the cellulose insulation used seems to have 12.8% boric acid according to the specs. Whether that is enough to act as an insecticide....who knows.
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Old 08-05-2012, 03:44 PM   #11
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The simplest and most effective method is to make some cards out of anything paper, coat it with a thin layer of honey and dump some borax on them (the honey will make the powder adhere) and place them anywhere the silverfish have been sighted. They are attracted to the honey and will consume the borax which also adheres to their legs . Death follows.
Professionels not necessary.

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